Southsea Castle
Southsea Castle
4
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
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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Top ways to experience Southsea Castle and nearby attractions

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles639 reviews
Excellent
249
Very good
278
Average
90
Poor
15
Terrible
7

visitorwithsense
Ivybridge, UK82 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2024 • Couples
Nice place to visit and allow dogs but only into the courtyard. Dogs not allowed on the “ramparts”. Why is this. It’s a simple wide walk giving views of the Solent and Martello towers.
I think this rule is stupid and without reason. It needs reversing
Written 5 May 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Cherriesfan99
Cheltenham, UK2,176 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2024 • Couples
Far more compact than we imagined, but still an attractive building, and significantly, an important part of King Henry'VIII series of coastal fortifcations. Being built in 1544, it was a statement of England's ( and Henry Tudors) determination to go his own way in many aspects, and consquently the South Coast was attacked just a year later, but repelled.
Short, squat and a deadly (for the time) gun platform, which controlled access to Portsmouth fledging naval port.
Definately worth seeing.
Written 7 April 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Elliott G
4 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2024 • Solo
Lovely place for a walk, has nice atmosphere and good scenery, would be good to take pictures or just get away with the dog.
Written 16 February 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

tezpil
Portsmouth, UK4,736 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2023 • Family
Here for a wedding, great photo opportunities, nice chapel but quite small and good marquee facilities for reception. Do it all in one venue and enjoy the day.
Written 16 January 2024
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

tushar_pai
Milton Keynes, UK3,846 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022 • Family
Strolling around the Southsea promenade you are bound to see this small castle with its broad approach lined with flowers and a massive water fountain at the front.

The castle is quite tiny and there is no much to explore. It is used as a wedding venue and a lot of the castle was covered by marquees. The views from the top are underwhelming.

The cafe is the highlight serving up good coffee that can be had in the courtyard on a nice day sheltered from the winds.

Considering that it is free entry, it was a good place to spend some time at. I wouldn’t take the effort to visit it specifically.
Written 1 November 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jessica P
2 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2023 • Family
Southsea Castle is a beautiful place steeped with history and used to be such a good place to have a little look around. When I was a kid there was a fair amount to see and it was educational... I was so disappointed to see it's basically just a wedding venue, now. There are 2 small rooms that have minimal bits in and then upstairs it's just 2 rooms used for weddings. Completely disappointed. The tunnels aren't even open anymore, instead they do tours a couple of times a week. It's a shame that something that used to be so good, is now so poor.
Written 24 October 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Andy
37 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2023 • Couples
Very pleasantly surprised. The museum in the castle was very informative and in fact I found it clarified a few items from my visit to the historic Dockyard. Being free to enter you cannot get better value for money
Written 28 June 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Marion M
Nyon District, Switzerland571 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2023
Unfortunately the area is closed until April but we walked around and got a good idea of what it would have looked like. Good fun to see the place that Henry 8th watched the Mary Rose from
Written 21 February 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

craneage
Fareham, UK36 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2023 • Friends
Visited the cafe on a really wet and windy day for breakfast with friends. All food was amazing and service was 1st class the waitress couldn't do more for us. Will definitely visit in the summer for a cocktail or 2 as the outside terrace looked beautiful.
Written 15 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

FIL M
London, UK551 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022
We were only able to enjoy the castle from the exterior due to a private function/event that was taking place. It is rather beautiful from the outside as well as looking out to sea.
Written 19 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Southsea Castle - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024) - Tripadvisor

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