Its position where the estuaries of the River Stour and the River Orwell meet the North Sea have made it an important port for centuries, and it is now a busy ferry and container port for Holland, Germany and Scandinavia.
St. Nicholas Church, with a tower and spire visible from far out at sea, was built in 1821.
The Guildhall has an 18th century council chamber.
The High Lighthouse was built in 1818, and the Low Lighthouse, painted by John Constable, now features a museum, while on the green there is a unique naval treadwheel crane from the 18th century.
There is a circular Redoubt Fort, built in 1808 against the possibility of a French attack. It has walls 8 feet thick.
The Electric Palace, dating from 1911, is Britain`s oldest cinema.
Dovercourt is Harwich`s seaside resort.
Samuel Pepys was Member of Parliament for Harwich in the 1670s.
Among those born at Harwich are Christopher Jones, Master of the "Mayflower"; and Christopher Newport, who sailed with Raleigh.
Harwich has made at least two appearances in song. "For you dream you are crossing the Channel, and tossing about in a steamer from Harwich" (Gilbert and Sullivan, "Iolanthe"), and "I was not prepared for marriage, I would catch a boat from Harwich, but I don`t speak any D-u-c-h Dutch" (Newley and Bricusse, "Stop the World - I Want to Get Off").
Blue Badge Guide Colin Crosby is available to lead Guided Walks around Harwich for groups.