Did You Know You Can Tour A U. S. Navy Submarine Near Kittery?
If you are a history geek, especially if you love military history, you are going to want to plan a trip to tour the USS Albacore in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The same goes if you have kids because, let's face it, kids really love machines... Trucks, excavators, planes, trains, and SUBMARINES!
About USS Albacore
According to Wikipedia, USS Albacore (AGSS-569) was built in the early 1950s in Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. She was commissioned on December 6th, 1953. For the next twenty years she acted as a test vessel for the United States Navy. Improvements tested on her helped the navy transform her subs from the clunky looking boats of World War 2 into the sleek boats the navy operates today.
She was decommissioned in 1973. Eventually, she was purchased by a non-profit organization in Portsmouth. In the mid-1980s, she was drydocked and turned into a museum that can be enjoyed by navy veterans and all history-lovers.
There are several parts to the park. There is a visitors center that includes a room filled with models, other submarine memorabilia, and a TV showing submarine documentaries. There's also a gift shop that sells everything from books, to shot glasses, to models, and more.
You can tour the submarine itself. Due to the cramped quarters, it is easier to tour the boat right after opening or on a mid-week day. It is a lot quieter then, so you can really stop to take it all in.
There is also a Memorial Garden that pays homage to those who died in the silent service.
Depending on how much you love history, and the attention span of your kids, a trip to the park can take anywhere from an hour to half a day.
Currently, the park is open seven days a week, from 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM. Get more details about planning your visit at the Albacore Park website.