NOAA’s Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary offices, and visitor center, the Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center are located at:
500 W. Fletcher
Alpena, Michigan 49707
Office Hours: M-F, 8:30 am to 5:00 pm, Closed on Federal Holidays
The visitor center is FREE and open all year
Summer hours: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm, Monday through Sunday
Summer hours start on Saturday of Memorial Day weekend
Extended evening hours in July & August - open until 7:00 pm
Winter hours: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm, Monday through Saturday, 12 noon - 5:00 pm Sunday
Winter hours start the second Monday in October
The Visitor Center exhibits are occasionally closed for special events, be sure and check our website calendar for the latest announcements.
The Visitor Center is also closed on: January 1, (New Year's Day), November 26(Thanksgiving Day), December 24 (Christmas Eve), December 25 (Christmas Day), andJanuary 31 (New Year's Eve).
Get Directions to the sanctuary visitor center, located in the pleasant lake front community of Alpena, Sanctuary of the Great Lakes!
Sanctuary staff work to actively promote uses of sanctuary resources that are compatible with sanctuary resource protection; in fact, all National Marine Sanctuaries promote multiple uses.
Access to sanctuary shipwrecks is not restricted. The range of depth of the shipwrecks appeals to a variety of diver skill levels and also provides recreational opportunities for non-divers.
Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center Brochure
Explore Your Sanctuary Brochure
Michigan Sea Grant Coastal Tourism Fact Sheets - Plan Your Tour!
The sanctuary hosts programs and events throughout the year. Check ourcalendar to see what’s coming up! Or request a special program for your group:
Group Visit Form
Annual Thunder Bay International Film Festival
Annual Great Lakes Regional MATE ROV Competition
Annual Thunder Bay Maritime Festival
Michigan Historical Museum System