Once little more than a fishing village, Maryport’s heyday began towards the end of the eighteenth century when the local coal and iron industries were taking off. By 1777, the town had many grand Georgian buildings and three shipyards. It’s a quieter place now though: the harbour’s still there, and a few fishing boats come and go, but the most attractive feature of the waterside area is the modern marina, a great place to wander around on a sunny summer’s day.
The main tourist attractions in the town are the Senhouse Roman Museum and the Lake District Coast Aquarium. There is also a small maritime museum at the bottom end of Senhouse Street, overlooking the River Ellen.