Southsea Castle

Portsmouth

Type:Castle / Fort

Southsea Castle, Clarence Esplanade, Southsea, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO5 3PA

Tel: +44 023 9284 1625

Southsea Castle under a blue sky

About

Built in 1544, Southsea 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 stood inside only to watch his flagship, the Mary Rose, tragically sink. 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 (subject to opening, by appointment or by prior arrangement) and see how the Castle would have been defended against invaders. Artillery, gun platforms and panoramic views from the top of the keep overlook the Isle of Wight and Solent.

The Castle is open March to October free of charge, with a fabulous cafe offer, great shop and microbrewery. The Castle's Cafe also offers a Champagne bar every Friday evening (in season). 

Please note that on the occassion of a wedding at Southsea Castle, certain parts may be inaccessable to members of the public. To check if there is an event or wedding taking place in the castle, please use the contact details provided.

Book Tickets

Guide Prices

Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
Free admissionFree

Facilities

Accessibility

  • Facilities for Visually Impaired Visitors - Audio visual display available
  • Guide Dogs Permitted
  • Toilets for Disabled Visitors - Available in nearby D-Day museum car park

Catering

  • Cafe
  • On-Site cafe/restaurant
  • Picnic Site - on communal parkland

Establishment Features

  • Conference facilities
  • Event Venue
  • Groups welcome
  • Toilets

Group Travel

  • Out of Hours Visits

Parking & Transport

  • Coach parking - Adjacent at the D-Day Museum
  • On site parking - Adjacent at the D-Day Museum
  • On site parking close by
  • Railway station within 5 miles

Provider Preferences

  • In town/city centre

Specialist Features

  • Educational Groups
  • Family Fun

Tours and Demonstrations

  • Educational Visits Accepted - Most suitable for Key Stages 1, 2 and 3. 'Tudor Experience' sessions available.

TripAdvisor

Map & Directions

Public Transport Directions

Nearest stations are Portsmouth & Southsea or Portsmouth Harbour.

Opening Times

Winter Closing - November to March (1 Nov 2022 - 29 Mar 2023)
DayTimes
Monday - SundayClosed*
Summer Opening (30 Mar 2023 - 31 Oct 2023)
DayTimes
MondayClosed
Tuesday - Sunday10:00 - 17:00
Bank Holiday10:00 - 17:00
Dates and times marked with a '*' are provisional and may be subject to change

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