Salem, Massachusetts Cruise Port, 2023, 2024 and 2025 Cruises to Salem, Massachusetts | The Cruise Web

Salem, Massachusetts Cruise Port

There is possibly no other city that has wedged itself into popular culture as vividly as the cruise port of Salem, Massachusetts. Famous for the 1692 witch trials, multiple attractions here refer back to those dark days, such as Witch House, a home that once belonged to a trial judge, and the neighborhood known as Witchcraft Heights. Located in the eastern United States near the Atlantic Ocean and on Massachusetts' North Shore, Salem is a wealth of history, even without its witch-studded backdrop. Settled by European fishermen in 1626 who traveled the Naumkeag River looking for a place to put down roots, the town was dubbed "Salem," a form of the Hebrew "peace" (shalom). With the arrival of the Puritans (who sought religious freedom for themselves but not that of others), witchcraft allegations propelled the town into notoriety. Here are some of our favorite experiences when cruising to Salem, Massachusetts:
  • The oldest continuously operating museum in the U.S. is the Peabody Essex Museum, with an incredible collection of art and artefacts. The museum focuses on American maritime trade and whaling, the historic homes of Salem, and global offerings, such as a rebuilt Qing-era Chinese house.
  • Salem is also famous for its author son Nathaniel Hawthorne, and his House of the Seven Gables is based on a real place. It’s one of the oldest intact 17th-centry wooden mansions in New England. The house is fascinating, whether or not you've read the book – especially for its secret passageway.
  • With all the witch-related things to see, one of the most poignant is the Salem Witch Trials Memorial. Made up of 20 granite benches which surround an area near the Old Burying Point, they’re inscribed with the name of the accused, along with why and when they were executed.
  • Ship lovers will want to see the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, which gives tours of the historic custom house, built in 1819, along with two colonial residences. The highlight is the full-scale replica of the 1805 ship called Friendship: the largest wooden Coast Guard-certified vessel built in New England in more than a century.

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