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“The BEST (free) nautical attraction in Newport - calling all Seadogs!”

IYRS School of Technology & Trades
Ranked #61 of 119 things to do in Newport
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Attraction details
Owner description: Home of the oldest American yacht in existence and school where students restore classic yachts.
Reviewed 23 August 2016

On a recent trip to Newport we stumbled across this outstanding, and interesting, attraction. Essentially this is a working, endangered-skills training school, training students in the art of yacht restoration. In addition, their campus (i.e. working workshop/yacht shed) is freely open to the public for a look see, where one can view on-going work on a number of projects. Many classic wooden yachts in evidence, and their must-see flagship restoration project - the Coronet.

The Coronet is a large (131-foot) schooner famous for winning a $10,000 challenge transatlantic race. Further, she circumnavigated the globe in 1888 and became the first yacht to round Cape Horn from East to West. For many years she was moored in Portland, Maine and took part in US Bicentennial celebrations. She now belongs to the IYRS school/museum and is undergoing a long term (i.e. >10 yr), full restoration. The story boards and exhibition are full of interesting tidbits of history and anecdotes and make for a wonderful and nostalgic trip down the maritime historical road. The collection of original saloon fixtures and fittings is strewn topsides and alongsides (so to speak), in line for restoration, including the original piano! Also, many of the original yacht fittings, rigging etc.

This is a wonderful visit for anyone wanting to experience old world boat building and restoration, with many of the original woodworking and boat building skills in evidence, although many now undertaken with the advantage of modern tools where it makes sense to do so. I get the feeling this could be a special visit for grandparents and grandchildren. Probably good to allow up to an hour - but could be done in half easily. The IYRS is located towards the one (non downtown) end of Thames street, but it's within walking distance of the main Newport Thames street vibe and attractions.

2  Thank SeadogCapeTown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3 - 7 of 26 reviews

Reviewed 15 August 2016

Free to observe, open during all-weather and right on Thames Street. What's not to love? Stop in at the school admission office for quick overview and they will send your around the back for a self-guided tour (basically walk around the viewing areas) of the main workshops. You can view the students at work on projects from a catwalk up one flight of stairs. You can also visit the temporary building behind the workshop area that is housing the re-furbishing project of the Coronet. You could do this visit in as little as 10 minutes or stay for as long as you want!

1  Thank peggiesfarm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 July 2016

We had the opportunity to visit IYRS recently. I think the school could do a better job of educating the public by offering an organized tour manned by students. I would have paid a small fee for an informed tour. Ship building is a lost art and it would be adventagous to educate the public to the schools work.

While we did go see the Corronet - again, it would have been helpful to have someone on staff give a brief overview of the important work being done to restore the vessel.

2  Thank bonnielegof
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 June 2016

You can go up to the second floor balcony and watch the tradesmen working on repairing boats. Quite an interesting experience.

Thank FancyNancy650
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 22 September 2015

Nice to see the trade of building and maintaining boats is still being taught to the next generation. The self guided visit is nice and there is the opportunity to watch the progress.

1  Thank KN2026
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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