Portsmouth  - Southsea Coast Guide 

Portsmouth is the home of the Royal Navy and has been since Henry VII established the first dockyard in the town. The city occupies the Portsea Island peninsula, which overlooks a naturally defensible harbour and these advantages were not lost on the Romans or Saxons, who both established harbours here.

                                                    Spinnaker Tower Portsmouth     Spinnaker Tower Portsmouth                      


For details of Portsmouth Hotels and Holidays, Guest Houses, Cottages  and to visit Attractions.  Go to Portsmouth Hotels Guest Houses and Cottages

It was Henry VIII who really established the town as the home of the Navy. During his reign he increased the size of the fleet by ten times so that at the end of his reign the fleet consisted of 60 ships. 

Many great navy ships were built here among them the Mary Rose and HMS Victory which Nelson commanded during his great battle at Trafalgar. Having served her country well, she is now one of the country’s top heritage attractions as over 350,000 people visit her in No. 2 Dry Dock, Portsmouth Naval Base.



As a major naval base Portsmouth became a target during World War II and much of the town was flattened. The modern town is unremarkable and tourists usually concentrate on the waterfront area which has much to offer. The town is currently in the process of building a landmark tower that will be 170 metres high and in the shape of a sail. The £25m project will be one of the the highest viewing platform in the UK when opened in mid-2005.

Numerous car ferries operate from Portsmouth to France, Spain and the Channel Islands. There are numerous operators including, Brittany Ferries, Condor Ferries and LD Lines. Wightlink connects to the isle of Wight. 




       HMS Warrior Portsmouth      Portsmouth Spinnaker Tower       Portsmouth old town 

                            HMS Warrior                                                     Spinnaker Tower                                         Portsmouth old town 


Southsea is the traditional seaside resort part of Portsmouth and has a four mile long promenade and plenty of beach space. There's fun and fascination at some of the resort's leading attractions and the chance to relax on the beaches. There are also two piers which offer even more entertainment and wonderful sea views. 

Places to visit in Portsmouth 

Spinnaker Tower - Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth Hampshire PO1 3TT Telephone: (0)23 9285 7520

Portsmouth Historic Dockyard - Home of HMS Victory, the Mary Rose & HMS Warrior 1860, plus the Royal Navy Museum and Action Stations. Visitor Centre, Victory Gate, HM Naval Base, Portsmouth PO1 3LJ. Telephone: 023 9283 9766. For more details visit: Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

The Broadwalk Port Solent - For bars, shops and restaurants

Portsmouth Cathedral - High Street, Portsmouth 

Gunwharf Quays - around 90 shops cafes and leisure facilities. 

Visit Portsmouth site - for more information. www.visitportsmouth.co.uk/ 

Southsea Castle - Commissioned by Henry VIII and completed in 1544 to defend the harbour. Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, PO5 3PA. Phone: 023 9284 1625 

Blue Reef Aquarium - British and tropical fish with an underwater tunnel, sharks and sting rays. Clarence Esplanade, Southsea PO5 3PB, Phone: 023 9287 5222 

Spitbank Fort - The only sea fort open to the public in the UK. Located in the Solent and and now an exclusive resort/ hotel. Phone: Reservations: 0330 333 7 222 

Map of the Portsmouth area 

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Other sections of the guide you might also enjoy - see below.


Cliff and coast walkingWhether your idea of an ideal activity is sunbathing or you prefer something more strenuous, the  chances are that you will be able to pursue this at the coast. There is a wide selection of activities that can be found on our coastline - these range from a gentle stroll to the next bay, to swimming and snorkelling, to more energetic activities such as sailing, surfing, windsurfing and kite sailing. See Activities section.


Attractions - see listings pages

national lobster hatchery padstowA huge selection of attractions are available within the coastal area and this section will have details of many of them. From piers and harbours to fun fairs and roller coasters, the listings will have details of what's available in your chosen area. For details of attractions look in the resort pages. 

 The National Lobster Hatchery - Padstow

Beach PubPubs, restaurants and shopping guide

The listings section will also have details of pubs, restaurants, nightclubs and shops available in the locality. Restaurants and shops coming soon.....

                                                                                                                                            The Beach Pub - Exmouth


We will bring you feature  articles  about the coastline and  news items about life in the coastal area. contributions to this section are welcome.

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