• Imagining History

The Titanic – Ship Facts for Kids

Updated: Apr 22

The Titanic was a luxury ship that famously hit an iceberg and sank on its first ever voyage, despite being marketed as being “unsinkable”. Now you can impress your family, friends and teachers with these fascinating facts and figures about this enormous ship.


The Titanic under construction in Belfast, Ireland

Who owned the Titanic?

A shipping company called the White Star Line.

Titanic almost ready for launch at the Harland and Wolff shipyard.
When and where was Titanic built?

Construction began on this mammoth ship at the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast, Ireland in 1909.


How long did it take to build the Titanic?

It took just over 2 years and over 15,000 men to build such an enormous vessel.


When was Titanic ready for launch?

The Titanic was launched into the ocean from the shipyard on 31st May 1911. Less than a year later, she was plunging her way to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.


Did You Know?:

The Titanic had two sister vessels called the Olympic and the Britannic. The Olympic was built at the Harland and Wolff shipyard alongside the Titanic, the Britannic was built later. Despite being designed as a luxury passenger liner like the Titanic, the Britannic went on to be used as a hospital ship during the First World War and was sunk by a mine in 1916. The Olympic survived her stint as an armed transport ship for soldiers during the war and continued to carry passengers across the Atlantic until she was scrapped in 1935.

A scale image of the size of Titanic (in blue) against the Queen Mary 2 (the only Ocean Liner still in service), an Airbus A380 (the world's largest passenger airliner), a bus, a car and a person. Courtesy of Yzmo.

How big was the Titanic?
The rudder of Titanic's sister ship, the Olympic. For scale, check out the tiny man at the bottom!

She was 269 metres long, 28 metres wide and 53 metres tall (including the funnels). That’s the same length as 2 and a half football pitches. Even the ship’s propellers were enormous – the largest had a span of 7 metres.


How heavy was the Titanic?

Alone, the Titanic weighed a hefty 46,300 tonnes. And with the added weight of passengers, crew, their luggage and coal to fuel the engines, she weighed a whopping 52,000 tonnes. That’s the same weight as five Eiffel Towers stuck together!


How fast could the Titanic travel?

The Titanic could travel at a speed of 23 knots (approximately 26 miles per hour). That’s just a little faster than Usain Bolt can run.


Did You Know?:

Shockingly, the Titanic was actually considered to be one of the safest ships ever built at the time. So the White Star Line can hardly be blamed for claiming their ship to be unsinkable. She had a clever compartment system that split her hull into 16 sections. If one of these compartments became flooded, watertight steel doors would seal the section, preventing water from flooding into the rest of the ship. The Titanic could stay afloat if up to 4 compartments were flooded. Sadly, the way that the iceberg scraped along the side of the ship meant that more than 4 compartments were flooded and the ship was lost to the ocean.

Diagram showing Titanic's watertight compartments (letters A-P)
How many funnels did the Titanic have?

The Titanic had 4 funnels. But only 3 of them were functional. The fourth funnel was added to make Titanic look bigger and better than the other ships built at that time, which often only had 3 funnels or less.


Check out what life was like on board Titanic, the ship of dreams in our next blog.

Tags: