Museums & Art

Manitowoc’s museums celebrate our rich maritime history, showcase our arts, and share with visitors the overall history of the region and beyond. 

Inside the historic Rahr-Vilas mansion, the Rahr-West Art Museum boasts a collection of works by Georgia O’Keeffe, Andy Warhol, Pablo Picasso and more. This stop on the Wisconsin Art Destinations trail features a series of annual exhibits, as well as unique exhibits each year. With so many exhibits in rotation, the Rahr-West is a perfect stop year-round. Because it’s a city-owned facility, admission is free! 

The Wisconsin Maritime Museum features extensive exhibits that share the history of manitowoc on Lake Michigan, as well as the maritime history of the entire state. In late 2022, Manitowoc was designated an American World War II Heritage City by the National Park Service because of the contributions made by Manitowoc’s businesses and citizens during the war. Manitowoc’s WWII heritage can still be explored today at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum and through its annual events, like Subfest. While at the museum, you can step directly into WWII history as you board and tour the docked USS Cobia submarine. 

For the history buffs, a visit to the Manitowoc County Historical Society is a must! There, history comes to life. Over 25 historic Manitowoc County buildings and 60 acres make up the Pinecrest Historical Village. Each year, many events, workshops and special series are presented to allow hands-on learning about Manitowoc area history. 

Hands-on education is also a feature at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center. There you can visit the birthing barn for a chance to witness a calf’s birth or walk through 10,000 square feet of interactive, educational exhibits that showcase the origins of our food, modern technology that keeps food safe and more! 


Play detective as you guide your friends and family out of an escape room at What the Lock.

Family Fun

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