From the 18th century till today

Good stories are worth to be told, particularly the story of the East Indiaman Götheborg. The Swedish East India Company, one of Sweden’s most successful brands in history, was founded in the year of 1731. The Trade Company traded with China and completed a total of 132 voyages with 37 ships until it ceased in 1813. In 1993 the Swedish East India Company was re-established in order to revive, manage, operate, and develop the art of Swedish shipbuilding and seamanship.

Just over 175 years later, the story of the Company and the ship are being retold. It is a greatly dramatic story, mainly due to the wrecking of Götheborg that occurred outside the harbour of Gothenburg in 1745. Twenty-one years would pass between the first dives to the wreck in 1984 and the maiden voyage to China. These years were filled with courage, determination, and commitment from people with big hearts and who believed in the grand dream. The dream became a reality and a story worth telling.

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1731 - 1813

The Swedish East India Company

Did you know that the Swedish East India Company, founded in 1731, was one of Sweden’s most successful companies in history? The Company made the small country of Sweden part of a big world through the profitable trading trips with the East Indiamen to China. The city of Gothenburg flourished into a prosperous commercial centre.



The Original Ship

The East Indiaman, later named “Götheborg” was built at Terra Nova, which was one of the four major shipyards in Stockholm in the 18th century. She was launched in 1738 and went through three adventurous voyages to China before it’s wrecking outside the Fortress of Älvsborg.

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The Swedish Maritime Archaeology Society in Gothenburg carried out the first dives to the wreck in December 1984, which gave birth to the fantastic idea of building a reconstruction of the East Indiaman Götheborg in a full-sized replica. The dives took place in July of each year between 1986 and 1992. 200 volunteers carried out most of the work.



Building the ship

Constructing a full-sized replica of an 18th century ship without any original drawings in hand is pretty much condemned to fail. Adding to the fact that solely 18th century tools, building methods and materials were used. Luckily, however, some crazy dreams grow wings and take flight.




On October 2, 2005 it was finally time to leave the homeport of Gothenburg and sail its maiden voyage to China. Wherever in the world The East Indiaman Götheborg would lay it would attract attention. The success became bigger than anyone had ever dared to hope for. The Ship has completed a total of nine expeditions during a period of ten years; thousands of people have sailed the East Indiaman on its voyages, and more than a million visitors have been aboard to experience the ship.




The East Indiaman is a part of the rich range of culture and experiences of Västra Götaland and the City of Gothenburg. Starting from the year 2017 and onwards, it will become a new historical visitor destination in Gothenburg, and will be located in the new Quay of Masthuggen, “Nya Masthuggskajen”. Surrounding the East Indiaman, an experience centre will be created on a newly built peninsula as a part of the rich cultural range within its neighbouring area. The setting genuine and suiting as it used to be a place where masts were cut and where sailing boats were rigged before sailing out across the world.