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Southsea Castle, Portsmouth

4.2
#4 of 14 in Historic Sites in Portsmouth
Southsea Castle served England’s rulers, beginning with Henry VIII, variously as a fortress, prison, vantage point, or simply a place to sleep while inspecting Portsmouth’s defenses. Watching from this castle, Henry VIII saw his prized vessel the Mary Rose sink. Take a look around yourself, as admission is free, and make sure to see the tunnel for moat defense. Get a feel for the long history of this fort only decommissioned from active military service in 1960. Use our Portsmouth tour planning tool to arrange your visit to Southsea Castle and other attractions in Portsmouth.
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Southsea Castle Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
471 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • Very insightful with regards to its history and Henry VIII also Mary rose. Lots for youngsters to do. Couldn't go in tunnel or see whole castle due to private function.  more »
  • Small castle/fortification. Good for young visitors, but they won't be able to see the view across the harbour without help. Family and dog friendly. The tea room is busy,caters for different dietary ...  more »
  • Can't really complain as this was free but there was a private function on so couldn't go to the cafe. Everything seemed a bit tired and worn and the displays weren't very interesting. Fun to climb ar...  more »
Google
  • We visited the frankly fantastic restaurant here and were not disappointed. The entire booking process for our group of 12 was easy and well organised. On arrival we were greeted and seated with no fuss and meals turned up exactly as ordered. The food is excellent, simple, tasty and with a touch of class. A nice touch was the chef coming to see us to check all was well. Price was the biggest (and smallest) surprise of the evening. Very reasonable for the standard of food. We would definitely recommend it.
  • 'Forts and guns' go with the territory. This one is well looked after. Not very big but well worth it. Entrance is free; donations welcome. Shop and a cafe. Great venue for happy occasions.
  • A place to discover for free, enjoy a really fresh fish and chips lunch at the little courtyard cafe. Visit the local brewery and buy some local brew to take home. Free to visit dressing up room and sit on a throne for photos. Go up the stairs and see the ramparts and lighthouse. Dog friendly.
  • It is a great archaeological and historical site, but in my opinion shouldn't be used as a champagne bar and catered party place. I really enjoyed the historic atmosphere and maybe a reading sanctuary is much more appropriate
  • Great place for a quick visit. Loads of history and interesting facts about the castle from medieval to Victorian times. Its free entrance and has limited exhibits but staff are helpful and has a great little cafe.

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Where to stay in Portsmouth

From top-quality luxury brands to boutique hotels and cozy B&Bs, lodging in Portsmouth is available to suit most travelers' needs and tastes.  To have easy access to the city major routes and main attractions, consider booking your rooms near Portsmouth's historical naval dockyard. Hotels in this area offer stylish rooms, excellent food, ample parking, and a wide range of recreational facilities, including spas, pools, and fitness centers. A range of trendy shops and restaurants are within walking distance, as are the ferry terminals to France and the Channel Islands.
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