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HOT: Polly Woodside, South Wharf

HOT: Polly Woodside, South Wharf

Did you know that there is a pirate ship in Melbourne’s CBD?

polly woodside

Polly Woodside is actually a National Trust listed 19th-century tall ship that’s docked at South Wharf.

But every child I know who’s seen it calls it the ‘pirate ship’.

polly woodside

And guess what? Baby buccaneers can even indulge their pirate fantasies on the first Sunday of every month with Pirate Sundays at Polly Woodside.

polly woodside pirate sundays

From 10am to 3pm there is a packed calendar of activities, from pirate craft and tattoos…

polly woodside pirate sundays

polly woodside pirate sundays

…to walking the plank and treasure hunts.

polly woodside pirate sundays

The actors are incredibly good-humoured, quick-witted and are generally very skillful at directing and engaging the crowd of little people. I find their jokes funny too!

polly woodside pirate sundays

When it’s not Pirate Sundays you can still tour the ship with a guide.

polly woodside pirate sundays

You can visit the sleeping quarters, ring the bell (there’s no donger!) and see below decks.

polly woodside pirate sundays

There’s also a gallery and museum with more detailed info within the main building. There you can look for the six embossed stamps that are hidden amongst the historical information.

polly woodside

Polly Woodside is a great way to bring history alive by teaching kids what life would have been like for a sailor on a cargo ship.

polly woodside

It’s also close to many South Wharf and Crown restaurants such as The Boatbuilders Yard and The General Assembly  and DFO South Wharf shopping. There’s car parking nearby or it’s accessible via public transport, making it an easy and fun day out for the family.

polly woodside

Polly Woodside also hosts Children’s Birthday parties and school excursions.

Ahoy Me Matey!

Click here for the more of the best museums in Melbourne for kids

HOT tips:

  • Close to Melbourne Convention and Exhibition centre and DFO shopping;
  • Walk from Southern Cross station or take any tram going down Clarendon St.
  • Nearest carpark is  DFO for $12 per hour of $6 per hour if you buy something from the shopping centre. A cheaper option is the Melbourne Convention Centre carpark which you can prebook via Wilson Parking for cheaper rates.
  • On non-Pirate Sundays openings there is storytime every Saturday and Sunday at 10.15am (ages 0-5) and children’s crew calls run at 10.30am, 11.30am, 12.30pm, 1.30pm & 2.30pm;
  • Allow around 1.5- 2 hrs for your experience. We arrive at 10am and leave around 11:30am for lunch nearby.
  • You cannot bring a pram on board as there are steps and stairs.
  • Toilets are inside the entrance building;
  • There’s no food at Polly Woodside but you can bring a picnic or eat nearby such as The Boatbuilders Yard and The General Assembly.

Joyce Watts

Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned entrepreneur. She combines her love for kids, food, travel and bikes into several passion projects.

She owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au; develops and produces bike-related creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com; and writes another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne with (non-kid related) reviews about things to do and places to go in Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

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