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Southsea Castle

Clarence Esplanade | Southsea, Portsmouth PO5 3PA, England
+44 23 9282 6722
Review Highlights
Fantastic views

The Southsea Castle is a great place for scenic views. There is a lighthouse, a cafe, and brewery... read more

Reviewed 4 days ago
via mobile
Well worth a visit, free entry

Just on the sea front/promenade at Southsea. Impressive location to command approaches to... read more

Reviewed 6 days ago
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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.
  • Excellent40%
  • Very good43%
  • Average14%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“henry viii” (45 reviews)
“free entry” (38 reviews)
Clarence Esplanade | Southsea, Portsmouth PO5 3PA, England

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Reviews (495)
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1 - 10 of 476 reviews

Reviewed 4 days ago via mobile

The Southsea Castle is a great place for scenic views. There is a lighthouse, a cafe, and brewery located on the grounds. We visited in November. They were doing renovations but I thought it was still worth a visit. I am sure it’s even better...More

Thank RamonaL34
Reviewed 6 days ago

Just on the sea front/promenade at Southsea. Impressive location to command approaches to Portsmouth dockyard. Several exhibits and well restored. Displays vary so check before going.

Thank francophile47
Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Not sure what the opening hours were but all I can say is that it was closed at 11am Sunday morning. Nice to see it from the outside though as an interesting part of History.

Thank Lisa1232
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Was surprised by what was in the castle grounds. Never really thought to pop on in. Was attracted by the micro brewery and saw there was a great restaurant/cafe, mini museum about the castle, little gift shop.

Thank Betty_Boo80
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We had a light lunch in the Castle restaurant, the food was very good, the prices are reasonable, and the staff are very friendly. Highly recommended

Thank Peter L
Reviewed 1 November 2017

If you love history this is a must.The staff were friendly and welcoming.and my son and I truly enjoyed our visit.

Thank Michael B
Reviewed 18 October 2017

loved our visit to Shouthsea Castle and in the evening they have a fantastic restaurant with spectacular food. Also they run a champagne bar in the summer months when the castle is lit up and they have bands playing

Thank uktanny
Reviewed 16 October 2017

The restaurant in here is one of the best you’ll find in the city. It’s hidden away and I hate that I’m writing this review to reveal how fantastic it is. We frequent the restaurant regularly for tea and breakfast. The food is outstanding every...More

Thank Raychel C
Reviewed 15 October 2017

Southsea Castle is in a gteat location tight on the sea front-in fact on rough days the sea comes over the wall and floods into the grass moat! Very important in Henry Tudor times with some interesting parts inside. Nice area to walk around,with grassy...More

Thank Chris L
Reviewed 13 October 2017

Brilliant place to walk around and it was all FREE. Amazing views and very easy to park nearby. Also so many other places of interest nearby.

Thank 13CHIPPY13
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Questions & Answers
8 February 2015|
AnswerShow all 7 answers
Response from Andrew W | Property representative |
Hello, Southsea Castle is not open to the public at the moment, but is normally open Tuesday - Sunday, and Bank Holiday Mondays, 10.00am - 5.00pm, April - October. The Castle is closed on Mondays (except for Bank Holidays... More