Pirate & Treasure Museum
An incredible adventure for kids and adults of all ages, the Pirate & Treasure Museum offers visitors a chance to journey back to the era of the Golden Age of Piracy. This unique museum showcases one of the largest collections of rare pirate artifacts in the world including Captain Thomas Tews 17th Century Treasure Chest and the Journal of Captain Kidds Final Voyage in 1699.
In 2005, Pat Croce, an author, sports team executive and entrepreneur, opened a pirate museum in Key West, Florida that included many artifacts from his personal collection. The history buff has been collecting pirate memorabilia since he was a young boy. Some of the artifacts are over 300-years-old. Five years later, he announced that the museum was relocating to St. Augustine. It reopened across from the Castillo de San Marcos in December 2010 occupying the former location of Teepee Town and the Christmas Store. It displays one of the largest and most authentic collections of historic pirate artifacts under a single roof. Pirates such as Sir Francis Drake and Robert Searles who frequented the nations oldest city and the Spanish fort, the Castillo de San Marcos, played a major role in the history of pirates and Colonial America. The St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum offers an exciting and educational museum experience that transports you and your family back in time over 300 years to Port Royal, Jamaica, at the height of the Golden Age of Piracy.
Rare Artifacts & Interactive Exhibits Are Draw To Pirates Museum St Augustine
Youll find pirate festivals in Tampa and pirate wannabes in Key West, but no Florida city has seen more actual pirates than St. Augustine.
Francis Drake sacked and burned the place in 1586 a century later it was pirate Robert Searles turn. Pirates were back in 1683 and 1686.
Finally, the Spanish built a fort the magnificent Castillo de San Marcos, now a national historic site partly to keep out the plundering pirates.
With all that pirate history, then, it makes sense that a St. Augustine pirates museum would be a tourist destination.
The St. Augustine Pirate and Treasure Museum appeals to history lovers and kids, and if you fall into one of those categories, you might choose it from among the several dozen attractions vying for your tourist dollars.
Two things you should know about the St. Augustine Pirate Museum:
The last room is devoted to Hollywood pirates and at its center, displayed with as much reverence as if it belonged to Blackbeard himself, is the sword used by Johnny Depp in the first Pirates of the Caribbean movie.
The St. Augustine Pirate Museum is a passion project of Pat Croce, a self-made millionaire entrepreneur who has collected pirate artifacts his whole life and funded the 2011 expedition that successfully found the wreck of a ship sailed by Sir Francis Drake.
The museum started in Key West 25 years ago and moved to St. Augustine, opening in 2010.
Pirate And Treasure Museum
St. Augustine, Florida
St. Augustine is the USA’s Ground Zero for pirates. The city has been plundered, twice, by cutlass-swinging buccaneers , a unique past that’s celebrated nowadays with the city’s annual Sack of St. Augustine in March, Drake’s Raid in June, and Pirate Gathering in November.
Modern-day buccaneer fires the electronic cannon.
Pat Croce, a millionaire businessman, knew of St. Augustine’s pirate past and moved his Pirate Museum to the city in late 2010 . Pat became obsessed with pirates as a kid when he saw the Errol Flynn film Captain Blood on TV. He has a pirate parrot tattooed on his shoulder, and a skull and crossbones tattooed on one of his teeth. “I took action on my passion,” he told us, referring to his museum and not his tattoos. “I want people to know pirates, feel pirates, smell pirates.”
We’ll get to the smell part in a minute.
The museum is easy to spot from the street: its flagpole flies not the Stars and Stripes, but the Jolly Roger. Visitors are given a “treasure map” and told that a dozen artifacts lie hidden in the museum’s various galleries. If you can find and identify all twelve , you get a “pirate stamp” on your map and, conceptually at least, become a pirate. We saw visitors — childless adults as well as children — examining every nook and cranny in the museum just so they could get that stamp.
All hands on deck. Pirate smell display to the right, interactive knot station to the left.
Eye surgery in pirate town.
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Visit The St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum
Journey back in time to the golden age of piracy and view the worlds largest collection of authentic pirate artifacts at the St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum!
St Augustine is known as the Ancient City, and rightfully so. Founded by Spanish explorers in 1565, its the oldest, continuously occupied settlement in the continental United States.
Pirates were extremely active in the St Augustine area during the 17th century. So much so that the Spanish built the imposing Castillo de San Marcos to protect the city from them. How appropriate is it, then, that the St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum is directly adjacent to this ancient fortification?
Entrepreneur, sports team owner, author, and TV personality Pat Croce founded St Augustines Pirate Museum. Pat began collecting authentic pirate artifacts as a child and has traveled the world in search for them. His collection is considered one of the largest in the world and includes objects over three hundred years old.
Luckily , he decided to share his considerable hoard of pirates treasure with the rest of us. Go see it at the St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum!
What Is There To Do
Arrr me harties, you might be in the oldest city in the USA, but you are also about to have a swashbuckling adventure at the St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum!
This super fun museum for families offers an exciting and educational experience that will transport you and your family back in time over 300 years to Port Royal, Jamaica, at the height of the Golden Age of Piracy.
Who said history can’t be fun!
The whole experience is super hands on for the kids. They can touch a real centuries-old treasure chest and lift a gold bar, or fire a REAL cannon on the Gun Deck!
Have you ever seen the world’s oldest wanted poster? You can here! You can also enjoy a show, or meet rogues at Rogues Tavern.
Don’t miss the exhibits too, including the permanent Red Sea Pirates artifacts that date back as far as the 17th and 18th centuries – pretty cool!
Those high waves of the seven seas are calling for those little ones wanting that sense of adventure, mixed in with some fascinating history right in front of your eyes, and a lot of fun!
Arrrr me harties, it’s pirate time in St. Augustine at the Pirate & Treasure Museum! Arrrrr
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Pirates Museum St Augustine
12 S Castillo Dr, St. Augustine
Admission: If you buy your tickets online: $18 adults $10 ages 5 to 12. You can buy a combo ticket with the adjacent sister attraction, the Colonial Quarter Living History Museum.
St. Augustine pirate museum coupon: Check the brochure racks and free tourist guides for coupons good for $1 off on tickets. Try this link for a $2 off coupon.
Note to parents: Some of material covered might frighten younger and sensitive children.
Plenty Of Food & Drink
And dont worry about being marooned theres plenty of food and drink downtown. The Spanish Bakery & Café echoes the theme of Spanish Colonial life, with rustic-looking picnic tables under a cedar tree right outside the Spanish-style structure. Empanadas, picadillo, soups, sandwiches and salads are made daily finish your meal with a treat from the bakery.
More sweet treats are available at Crucial Coffee, a quaint cabin in the heart of downtown with a garden patio and plenty of seating. Pastries complement a menu of gourmet coffees, teas, espressos, cappuccinos and more.
Or for something a bit stronger, head to Meehan’s Irish Pub, offering a great view of the St. Augustine Bayfront, live music and, of course, the very best pub fare and drinks.
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Inside The St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum
The St Augustine Pirate Museum is located at 12 South Castillo Drive in St. Augustine. The museum is directly across the road from Castillo de San Marcos and just under an hours drive from the door of our Jacksonville-area hotel, The Club Continental.
The museum is home to more than 800 authentic pirate artifacts and 300 years of pirating history. Things like Captain Kidds journal, one of only two surviving Jolly Roger flags, Blackbeards blunderbuss and gold pieces from the wreck of his warship Queen Annes Revenge, and Thomas Tews treasure chest, the only authentic pirate treasure chest known to exist. Youll also learn the history of some of the more infamous pirates and the swashbuckling world they lived in.
The museums flowing floor plan leads through 48 individual, interactive, and immersive exhibits, many of which feature audio-animatronics. In fact, Disney Imagineers designed the Blackbeards Ship exhibit!
Visitors can stroll a 17th century cobblestone street in Port Royal, fire a cannon, and pilot a pirate ship. You can even experience what it was like to be below decks during a pitched sea battle.
The St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum is a good fit for young and old a like. Kids will thrill at the adventure and interactive fun. Older visitors will enjoy viewing all the rare artifacts and learning the rich history. Theres even a fun scavenger hunt for the kids !
Trusted Tours And Attractions:
Trusted Tours and Attractions offers discount tickets to the St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum. The company offers special discount rates to children, adults, senior citizens and military personnel. The tickets must be purchased online on the Trusted Tours and Attractions website to receive the discount.
The museum itself also offers child, senior and military rates but the Trusted Tours and Attractions discount is cheaper.
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How To Use It
- All times are given in local time
- Present the e-voucher on your phone to gain admission
- Opening Time:
- See calendar
- Departure time varies based on hotel pick-up point
- Address: 12 S. Castillo Dr. St. Augustine, FL 32084. Meeting points throughout the tourism corridors of Orlando, Lake Buena Vista, and Kissimmee including the Disney and Universal areas. Please arrive at your meeting location at least 5 to 10 minutes prior to the departure time. Wait outside the meeting point as the Guides will not go into lobbies or stores to look for guests.
Welcome To The St Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum
Our museum features over 800 real pirate artifacts, including the only treasure chest known to have belonged to an actual pirate – as well as one of only three original Jolly Roger flags left in the world! With fun for all ages, bring your buccaneers to embark on a valiant quest to find 12 hidden artifacts with the museum’s treasure hunt. There is plenty to do and see inside The St. Augustine Pirate & Treasure Museum!
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Things To Do Near St Augustine
- St. Augustine Castillo de San Marcos: This national monument across the street from the Pirate Museum is the #1 thing to do in the area.
- The 120-year-old St. Augustine Alligator Farm has one of the best bird rookeries in the state for viewing and photographing birds in spring and early summer. Year-roun, the gators and crocs are fun to see too.
- Anastasia State Park is a coastal treasure for camping and its beaches.
- Fort Matanzas, 14 miles south, is a smaller Spanish fort built 50 years after the Castillo de San Marcos. Its a great stop because you take a small boat to the fort past spectacular scenery. And its free.
- Princess Place Preserve, a nearby county park with an 1888 hunting lodge once owned by a princess. Good hiking and camping. Free.
Note: I visited the Pirate & Treasure Museum with a complementary pass with a group of travel writers, but these opinions are my own.
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St Augustine With Pirate And Treasure Museum
- Spend the day in the oldest town in the U.S.
- Discover the secrets of the Golden Age of Piracy
- See authentic pirate artifacts and shipwreck treasures
- Roundtrip Transportation to St. Augustine
- Admission to Pirate and Treasure Museum
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St Augustine Go Pass:
City Pass Adventures offers a St. Augustine Go Pass that gives you admission to the St. Augustine history museum and three attractions of your choosing for one flat fee. The pass also gives you unlimited use of the Old Town Trolley and the St. Augustine Beach Bus with hop-on and hop-off privileges at all the stops.
The attractions available with the pass include:
Oldest Store Museum Experience