Back in November, we saw an article that replicas of the Pinta and Nina would be docking in Mobile, AL. Since we often visit Amy and Tyler there, we wanted to check them out while there. We had traveled down for the annual University of Mobile Christmas Spectacular so the timing worked out for our visit. Both ships were docked at Gulf Quest in Mobile.
We were able to go aboard each ship, and were amazed at how small they were. The Nina is an exact replica, but the Pinta was actually built larger than the real ship. The Pinta was built 15 feet longer and 8 feet wider than the original. They were both so small that we couldn’t believe that people sailed the seven seas on boats so small. We couldn’t imagine waves crashing over and around ships of this size. We expected there to be more room on each ship for living quarters but that wasn’t the case.
When asked if they were going to build the Santa Maria they said that they were not and that it was Columbus’ least favorite of the 3 ships. They said that with the size of it, it would not be able to travel the rivers and into some of the port stops.
These replicas only travel on rivers, and you can even sign up with sail with them! We talked to one crew member and you sign up for months at a time. We were also surprised at the wood as it appeared to be black or charred, but this was by design.
We’d recommend seeing them both if they are in your area anytime soon! It’s a small fee to tour and only takes a little bit of time to explore them both. We were able to imagine we were real discovers on an adventure!