San Salvador to Visit Channel Islands Harbor

A full-scale replica of the first European vessel to explore California’s coast will sail into the Channel Islands Harbor in late August. Interested visitors will have the opportunity to book an onboard tour or schedule a 3-hour day sail.

As part of its 2019 Pacific Heritage Tour, the San Salvador will be at the Channel Islands Harbor from Aug. 30 – Sept. 4, docked near the Channel Islands Maritime Museum. During its visit, interested visitors can take a dockside tour or book a 3-hour day sail. The last time the San Salvador visited the Channel Islands Harbor was Sept. 2016.

From Aug. 30 – Sept. 2, 2019, the public has the opportunity to book a visit and take a tour of the ship. Tickets cost $14 for adults, $10 for children under 10 years old, seniors over 62 years old, Maritime Museum members, and military family members. Active military and children under 3 years old can schedule a tour for free.

On Sept. 3 and 4, 2019 the San Salvador will be offering 3-hour day sails. Tickets range from $49-$99. These 3 hour Sailing Adventures are for people who love history, and sailing. Very few people have sailed aboard Galleons of the sixteenth century and these day sails will offer the public a chance to be aboard the magnificent galleon, San Salvador.


For questions about the tours or sailing adventure, please call or text (760) 518-1380

About the San Salvador

The San Salvador, under the command of Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, arrived at the port we now call San Diego on September 28, 1542, before proceeding further north in search of new trade routes. She was the first recorded European vessel to sail along California, and survey its coastline. Her expeditionaries established a generally friendly first contact with the indigenous peoples of that coast. The San Salvador must be considered the founding ship of San Diego and of the State of California. As such, she functions as an “origin symbol” ship for San Diego and the West Coast in much the same way as the Mayflower is the origin symbol ship of New England. Her story represents the beginning of a common heritage for the peoples of California, both past and present.

Recognizing the iconic nature of the San Salvador and her profound importance for the history and cultures of the West Coast of North America, the Maritime Museum of San Diego has embarked on an ambitious project – the construction of an historically accurate replica.

The Maritime Museum of San Diego’s construction of the San Salvador is based on painstaking research in the fields of Early Modern Spanish and Portuguese maritime history, and maritime archeology. Experts have scoured volumes of historical narratives, examined all the available images of early-sixteenth-century sailing vessels, and surveyed the remains of contemporary shipwrecks. They believe that the new San Salvador will be a highly accurate representation of the vessel that arrived at San Diego in 1542. To execute this vision, the Maritime Museum has engaged a group of skilled professional boat builders, who are assisted by scores of regular volunteers.

Editor’s Note: this story was published on Aug. 9, 2019.

1 Comment

  1. […] flagship galleon.  This tallship was brought to the Harbor by the Maritime Museum, and she will be docked beside the Museum until September 4, and open for public tours.  Our Maritime Museum does a wonderful job of bringing […]