Site Museum in an unusual place: the submarine Abtao

  • Submarine Museum Abtao

    Site Museum in an unusual place: the submarine Abtao

Museums are located in very different places: in historic or modern buildings, outdoors or in a submarine. To discover a very special museum, the visitor leaves the city towards the port of Callao.

There lies Abtao, the old submarine of the Peruvian Navy. For 48 years he served the Navy and made 5003 dives behind it, before it was discarded in 1998 and 2004 to become a museum. This makes it the first floating museum in South America.

Nowadays, the Abtao Museum plays a special role, since it clearly distinguishes itself thematically and with its location from the other museums in Lima and its surroundings. In addition, visitors from all types of areas of interest will find an entertaining destination: whether you are interested in the history of Peru or the Navy, simply knowledgeable about technology or traveling with children, the visit to Abtao will be remembered for a long time.

What is there to discover?

The submarine Abtao lies like a huge whale in the port of Callao. Anyway, gray heaviness is the first thing visitors see before entering the museum through an entrance hatch. Inside, they expect some surprises. In addition to the command bridge, the officers’ room and the crew cabins with bunk beds, the instruments, the torpedoes and the different cameras and departments that can be entered, a special system of vibration and sound is installed in the submarine that subverts the water and the authentic one in use.

Information about the history of submarines in Peru provides a video at the beginning of the tour. A guide explains how the submarine and instruments work, and the life-size figures recreate individual scenes of underwater life: there is a cook in the kitchen with prepared food, a man in the ritual of morning grooming, an officer. The highlight of the visit is undoubtedly the final submarine combat mission, which is accompanied by various effects. If you wish, you can use the canyon on deck, or simply enjoy the view of the port of Callao from the submarine. It is a completely different world to immerse yourself as a visitor of this special museum. Fascinating about the way people lived on that ship for days and weeks: the Abtao is 80 meters long, 9 meters wide and weighs 1,500 tons. However, the welfare of the visitors is taken care of in such a small space: a maximum of 30 people can participate in a guided tour of the Abtau site museum at the same time; for groups a reservation is necessary.