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Southsea Castle

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Address: Clarence Esplanade | Southsea, Portsmouth PO5 3PA, England
Phone Number: +44 23 9282 6722
Website
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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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 103
    Excellent
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    Very good
  • 32
    Average
  • 7
    Poor
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    Terrible
Give it a go cost nothing !

Excellent this place has upped its game, now free entry, walk the walls and look out over the Solent or Southsea. Nice selection of some historic cannons inside, a new franchise... read more

4 of 5 starsReviewed May 27, 2015
Yonmons
,
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
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257 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
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English first
Twyford, England, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
19 attraction reviews
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 28, 2015 NEW

Free to get in - lovely Cafe, Friendly Staff, History....even for a quick look - give yourselves a hour and imagine yourself in the times of King Henry XIII

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Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
101 reviews 101 reviews
22 attraction reviews
58 helpful votes 58 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 27, 2015 NEW

Excellent this place has upped its game, now free entry, walk the walls and look out over the Solent or Southsea. Nice selection of some historic cannons inside, a new franchise cafe has recently opened. An hour max will do it, but well worth it.

Was this review helpful? Yes
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
31 attraction reviews
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2015 NEW

Beautiful and stunning location that is free to visit. Explore first hand the castle King Henry VIII build to defend The Solent and to protect the port of Portsmouth. Great walls to climb and explore - also has a fantastic number of cannons and guns. Onsite there is a fantastic cafe that serves fabulous lunches and refreshments. Wonderful staff on... More 

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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
5 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2015 NEW

An unplanned visit to this castle resulted in my friend and I massively overstaying our parking ticket (but, fortunately without accumulating a penalty) and having a really interesting and enjoyable couple of hours wandering around. Parking spaces are plentiful and nearby (pay and display) and entry is free (which makes a pleasant change). Just next to the parking area are... More 

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Basingstoke, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2015 NEW

Worth a look at this castle that was built in 15oo by Henry VIII. Free entry and interesting bits of information all around, near the D day museum also

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Uffington, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
17 attraction reviews
66 helpful votes 66 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 24, 2015 NEW

Southsea Castle is a very interesting visit. Close to the D-Day Museum with handy nearby car parking (pay and display-bring correct change) There is a good video running in a side room and a few very interesting exhibits supplemented with some good information through-out the main tower. The views form the ramparts are fab but they could do with a... More 

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London, United Kingdom
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
6 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2015 NEW

A castle on the seafront. Stunning views of the sea and isle of wight. Free entry. A good attraction if you like seeing old structures.

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Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
9 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2015 NEW

Great place to visit with or without children. Enjoy a drink and see the views! Lots of steps, so not good for the infirm!

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London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
77 reviews 77 reviews
24 attraction reviews
61 helpful votes 61 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2015

Very interesting, plenty of information on exhibits, also guides are on hand to give help where needed. A few waxworks, very lifelike. There are stairs to climb, did not appear to have wheelchair or baby buggies, but not sure on that. Tea room very pleasant, good lunchtime menu. it does seem a bit pricy in my opinion. There is an... More 

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Chalford
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 19, 2015

Great restaurant, a hidden gem! We had coffee and cake after our tour, so good we went back in the evening when it was transformed into a bijou restaurant. The food was delicious, service charming and the music just right.

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Questions & Answers

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Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?