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Southsea Castle

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Address: Clarence Esplanade | Southsea, Portsmouth PO5 3PA, England
Phone Number: +44 23 9282 6722
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Description: Built in 1544, the Castle was part of a series of fortifications...
Built in 1544, the Castle was part of a series of fortifications constructed by Henry VIII around England's coasts to protect the country from invaders. Barely was the work completed when Henry VIII's flagship, the Mary Rose, tragically sank in front of the Castle. During the English Civil War, nearly a century later, the Castle was captured for the only time in its history, by Parliamentarian forces. Over the centuries, Southsea Castle's defences were strengthened so that it could continue to protect Portsmouth. In the 19th Century a tunnel was built to defend the Castle moat. Visitors can still enter the tunnel and see how the Castle would have been defended against invaders. The Castle has had many other uses besides defence. For a while it was a military prison. A lighthouse was built in the 1820s, and is still in use by shipping today. In 1960 the Castle left military service. It was acquired by Portsmouth City Council, which restored the Castle to its 19th century appearance.
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Will definitely drop in a again.

Visited as walking up the Esplanade. What a lovely little place and free! You don't need to allow much time but should definitely have a nose around. Next time we will probably... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed August 28, 2015
Babapapa2
,
Shirrell Heath, United Kingdom
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298 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Shirrell Heath, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 28, 2015 NEW

Visited as walking up the Esplanade. What a lovely little place and free! You don't need to allow much time but should definitely have a nose around. Next time we will probably try the cafe for a bite to eat.

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Greater Manchester, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 NEW

Fantastic and free!. Steeped in history, with great views over the Solent . This is one not to miss when visiting Southaea or Portsmouth.

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Ipswich, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2015 NEW

During a long walk along Southsea prom we came across the castle. We couldn't believe this was a free entry attraction! There is a lot of history attached to this castle with very good artefacts to read and look at. You are able to climb up to the top of the castle and the views are amazing , especially if... More 

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uk
Level Contributor
10 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2015 NEW

Southsea Castle was beautiful with stunning views, it seeped in history and the way the have incorporated some new with the old is truly lovely.

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Southsea, England, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
74 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2015 NEW

Wonderful little cafe tucked away inside. It's free entry to the Castle where little ones can enjoy the tunnels, battlements and cannon. There are lovely views across the Common and the Solent.

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Piraeus Region, Greece
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 attraction reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2015 NEW

The castle looks so impressive, with its stong thick walls, and has a very nice view. You can have long relaxing walks by the seafront, and arround the castle. My favorite hours is at late evening to early night, when the fog comes, and you can hear the fog hornes.

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Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2015 NEW

Not a big castle, but big on its history. There's a tea room and small gift shop and outside seating. The only thing there isn't, is a bike rack to keep one's cycle safe, but no-one objects when using a bench to lock it to, to keep it safe. It's free to amble round, and there's a donation bucket near... More 

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Farnborough, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
220 reviews
144 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 264 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2015 via mobile

What a good little attraction Southsea castle is, and its free!! Standing picturesquely you can explore this interesting castle, walk up the top and around. The views are brilliant. Theirs also a shop within the courtyard down below. The tunnel is really interesting(film location in 'tommy') with its maze of paths though some of it is gated off.

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Bentham, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2015

A must see whilst in portsmouth This site is very interesting with lots of displays and things to look at The sheer width of the walls and the site took away my breath !

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Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
55 reviews
53 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2015

This is where King Henry VIII watched the Mary Rose sink!! It's certainly not the most impressive castle in the world but it's worth a visit. Cannons, cannonballs and a fake Henry...what more could you want?

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  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?