In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue.
Now, the Pinta and the Niña have returned to the New World, making a stop in Camden.
“We are traveling museums,” says Captain Stephen Sanger. “We travel to about 30-40 places per year and we display our ships and people can walk aboard for self guided tours.”
The crew aboard these near-perfect replicas of Christopher Columbus’s esteemed vessels hopes to show what life was like at sea more than five centuries ago.
“This gives people a reason to realize what it was actually like back then how big the boats were and how kind of crazy they were to leave Spain and go all this way to find a new place,” tells Jamie Sanger, who has been traveling on the ships for the past three years.
“They went out into the unknown in 1492,” adds his brother, Stephen. “These are the style of ships used and these are what we call space shuttles of the 1400s.”
Their father, Captain Morgan Sanger actually built these ships himself in Brazil.
“It’s just such a pleasure to sail to ports and have people accept you and appreciate what we’ve done and meet new people and its a great travel experience,” explains the eldest Sanger. “I have had experiences that most people never get traveling by sea.”
The Sangers love life at sea on these historic ships.
“You meet so many people and that’s the best part,” says Jamie. “You make friends on board ship with the new crew and you make friends traveling around the world.”
The ships have sailed to 48 states and have reached more than 1.5 million students, giving them an unforgettable history lesson.
“One of the things I’ve always noticed is after 21 years, the students that come back to see us… ‘I remember you guys 10, 15, 20 years ago, talking about this’ and they never forget being on board these ships.”
The ships are docked at the Camden Public Landing and will be accessible to the public starting tomorrow, June 25, until their departure on July 1.
The ships are open every day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tickets are $8 per adult, $7 for seniors, and $6 for students.
For more information, visit thenina.com.