The Maritime Museum, though part of the same complex of buildings as the mostly overrated Jerónimos Monastery, is not overrated. Underrated in fact. It’s great, but you should know it’s huge and they approach Portugal’s extensive maritime history from many, many different angles: Age of Exploration, Naval, Commercial, Leisure and on and on ad infinitum. So while we probably only looked at maybe 1/4 of the displays they were excellent and well worth the time.
Where else will you get to see teeny models of amazing galleons and frigates and all sorts of ships that I don’t know the names of? Or the little altar that Vasco da Gama took with him to India? Or astrolabes? Astrolabes might be the coolest things of all time. Except astronomical globes. Those really are the coolest things of all time. You can see all of those things plus votive images sailors commissioned to protect themselves, or honor past disasters. They were poignant and lovely.
But the big show at the Maritime Museum are probably the actual boats they have on display. Lovely royal barges and fishing boats and even a seaplane! (Unfortunately my photos from the museum are a little weak; I think I had photography fatigue by that point…)
The Maritime Museum wins!