The Mayflower II is expected to arrive in Plymouth on August 10.

By Cailey Rizzo
July 20, 2020
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After an $11 million renovation, the Mayflower II will return home to Massachusetts — and you might be able to catch a glimpse of the trip.

The 64-year-old replica of the Pilgrims’ 17th-century ship will be towed in a two-week voyage along the Mystic River from New London, Conn. to Plymouth, Mass. in honor of the 400th anniversary of the early settlers' arrival. The trip began on Monday in an effort to test the vessel for seaworthiness.

John Greim/Getty

Expected to arrive in Plymouth on August 10 — although the date could change based on tide and weather conditions, according to a press release from Plimoth Plantation — history buffs may be able to catch it in action with the help of the MarineTraffic app or website. Members of the public who journey to the Mystic River to see the ship are asked to be mindful of local regulations, wear a face mask, and practice social distancing.

“Our goal is to keep the crew as isolated as possible,” Kate Sheehan, a spokesperson for Plimoth Plantation, told The Associated Press. “So the public will not be able to board the ship at any point during the journey. We’re just being very, very careful about the crew’s exposure.”

The ship will remain docked at Pilgrim Memorial State Park through the end of the year.

The Mayflower II was originally scheduled to depart from Connecticut’s Mystic Seaport Museum in April, which was delayed due to COVID-19. It would have stopped in several southern New England ports before arriving home to Plymouth in May.

The ship began construction in Brixham, England in July 1955 and was intended as a gift for the people of America from the people of England following World War II. It arrived in Plymouth on June 13, 1957, and has since been visited by millions.

The ship began its restoration efforts in 2014, spending part of the year in Mystic, Conn. Although the ship’s keel was saved, about 75 percent of the vessel is new. The renovated ship features new modern additions like a state-of-the-art fire suppression system.