Replicas of Christopher Columbus’ ships of discovery, the Nina and the Pinta, have visited Guntersville’s City Harbor previously to rave review. They’re set to return Aug. 16-Sept. 2, according to the ships’ published itinerary.

They will be in Florence starting July 17, then work their way up the Tennessee River through north Alabama.

According to the Columbus Foundation, the Nina was built completely by hand and without the use of power tools. Archaeology magazine called the ship “the most historically correct Columbus replica ever built.” In 2005, the Pinta, also a caravel, was launched in Brazil. The original Pinta was the first ship to sight land in the New World. Historians consider the caravel the Space Shuttle of the fifteenth century.

Both ships tour together as a new and enhanced “sailing museum” for the purpose of educating the public and school children on the caravel, a Portuguese ship used by Columbus and many early explorers to discover the world. Before him, the Old World and the New remained separate and distinct continents and ever since their fates have been bound together for better or for worse.

While in port, the general public is invited to visit the ships for a walk-aboard, self-guided tour. Admission charges are $8.50 for adults, $7.50 for seniors, and $6.50 for students 5 — 16. Children 4 and under are free. The ships are open every day from 9 a.m. until 6 p.m. No reservations necessary.

Teachers or organizations wishing to schedule a 30 minute guided tour with a crew member should call 1-787-672-2152 or email ninapintatour@gmail.com . Minimum tour size is 15. The charge is $5 per person.

For more information, visit the ships’ website at www.ninapinta.org.

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