MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) – News 5’s Caroline Carithers was in Downtown Mobile taking tours of the Niña and Pinta ships which are docked just outside of the GulfQuest Maritime Museum.

David Zenk and Eric Gissendanner, who are first mates on the Niña and Pinta respectively, spend several months out of the year touring the eastern United States primarily giving tours to schools and the public of these two historic ships.

The Columbus ships were built to commemorate and celebrate the 500th anniversary of Columbus’ first voyage. Zenk explains that they “talk about the explorations of the world led by Columbus, the caravel (the type of ship), and the experiences of the crew and Columbus during those voyages.”

Gissendanner expresses, “My favorite part is having people explore what it was like 500 years ago. What people expect is not what they see when they hop on board here.”

Alana Frost, the education coordinator at GulfQuest, says that the ships blend well with the mission of GulfQuest. “We have noticed a lot more traffic and interest in the museum when the ships are docked here.”

The ships will be docked until December 2 and is a great way to spend some family time over the holiday and see two pieces of living history right here in Mobile! If you show your receipt of the ship tour to the GulfQuest museum, you get 1/2 off admission to the museum until December 31.

GulfQuest is also hosting a free event on December 15 where local author John Sledge will be talking about his book about the Gulf of Mexico.

For a behind-the-scenes tour of the Niña, check out the video below.