The Vasa Museum has become a natural part of Stockholm's skyline. Its masts rising high above Djurgården have become a beacon guiding curious tourists and Stockholmers alike. Vasa has not always been housed in such splendour. From her salvaging in 1961 until 1988 Vasa's home was a 27-year long temporary one at the Wasavarvet Museum.
In 1981 a pan-Nordic competition to select the architect for the permanent Vasa Museum was held and 384 designs were submitted. The winners were the Swedish architects Marianne Dahlbäck and Göran Månsson with their design “Ask”. Construction began on 2 November 1987 when Prince Bertil inaugurated the building and laid the foundation stone in a dry dock from 1878.
Vasa's last journey
Soon the ship was hidden from the general public for almost a year. In September 1988, while still in place at the Wasavarvet Museum, the ship was built into a protective shell in preparation for her journey to the new museum – a voyage on the water.
In December 1988 Vasa made her final voyage. Resting on a pontoon she was transported in her protective shell to her new home.
The ship was now standing in a water-filled dry dock inside the new Vasa Museum. And slowly the water was drained from the dry dock and the protective shell removed from Vasa.
Opening of the new museum
During the summer of 1989 the museum, then still a construction site, was opened and nearly a quarter of a million visitors could see the partially uncovered ship.
King Carl XVI Gustaf inaugurated the museum on 15 June 1990 and since then millions of visitors from all over the world have made their way here.
With over a million visitors a year we reconstructed the museum. The museum reopened 1 May 2013, with a new exhibition hall, entrance hall and and brand new shop.
In 2019 the Vasa Museum welcomed over 1.5 million visitors - the most visited year in the museum's entire history.