For an intriguing historical perspective, head for the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes on the lakeshore just west of downtown. Top-notch displays make the history of navigation on the Great Lakes come alive. Changing exhibits highlight special aspects of life on the Great Lakes, for example, shipwrecks (including the tragedy of the Edmund Fitzgerald), the era of steam, the Canadian Navy during WWII, the life aboard a Great Lakes freighter.
Just in front of the museum, walk up the gangway of the 1959 Alexander Henry, a 3,000-ton Coast Guard icebreaker. What a treat it is to scramble all over the ship, exploring the gallery, engine room, and bridge.