Historic Dockyard Tour in Portsmouth, Portsmouth (Self Guided)

Naval life has played a crucial role in the development and in the existence of the city. Most of the events that the area experienced are connected to its exit to the sea. This tour is aimed to reflect them in the region's museums and other monuments that will help you discover the beautiful sea history and present port life of the city. Take the tour and explore these beautiful events in the history and present life of the port region of Portsmouth.
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Historic Dockyard Tour in Portsmouth Map

Guide Name: Historic Dockyard Tour in Portsmouth
Guide Location: England » Portsmouth (See other walking tours in Portsmouth)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 11
Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.2 km
Author: Lilly
1
Victory Gate

1) Victory Gate

The Victory Gate is the main entrance of the Portsmouth historic dockyard. The gate dates back to the beginning of the 18th century. The right part of the gate, as you pass through it, has a sign that is meant to commemorate the visit of Queen Anne in the year 1711. And even if it has survived World War II, it has still lost 2 parts, namely its arch and lantern.
2
HMS Warrior

2) HMS Warrior (must see)

HMS Warrior was the first armour-plated, iron-hulled warship, built for the Royal Navy in response to the first ironclad warship, the French Gloire, launched a year earlier. When completed in October 1861, Warrior was the largest, fastest, most heavily armed and most heavily armoured warship the world had seen. She was almost twice the size of Gloire and thoroughly outclassed the French ship in speed, armour, and gunnery. Warrior did not introduce any radical new technology, but for the first time combined steam engines, rifled breech-loading guns, iron construction, iron armour, and the propeller in one ship, and all built to an unprecedented scale.

Her construction started a competition between guns and armour that did not end until air power made battleships obsolete in the Second World War. Warrior became an early example of the trend towards rapid battleship obsolescence and was withdrawn as a fighting unit in May 1883. Listed as part of the National Historic Fleet, Core Collection, she is now a museum ship in Portsmouth.

Warrior had a similar area of sail to contemporary line-of-battle ships, but her larger size meant she was slower in ordinary weather and had to use steam to keep up. However, her iron construction and the stability it imparted to the ship meant she could carry more sail in a strong wind and was then as fast as the rest. Her longer, finer hull gave her great power in a seaway, so that she could take the windward position sailing against wooden rivals in bad weather.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
3
Action Stations

3) Action Stations

The Action Stations is an interplay gallery aimed to make its visitors experience what it feels like to command a Royal Marines War Ship or fly a helicopter.Visitors can try their hand at displays or climbing walls, activities that were necessary in the senior service, and become acquainted with marine technology.
4
Mast Pond

4) Mast Pond

The Mast Pond was dug in the year 1665. It was formed and built up by soldiers and Dutch prisoners of the period. The main aim of the Mast Pond was to keep the ships that were recovered from war damage on its waters. Today it still performs this function, and it is now the home of reconstructed ships that are financed by the Portsmouth dockyard Historical Trust.
5
Dockyard Apprentice

5) Dockyard Apprentice (must see)

Considering that the Dockyard Apprentice is today an exhibition place, it was once the world's greatest boat-building industry center. This impressive industrial complex of the 18th and 19th centuries once had 20,000 employers. Visit the place and get the chance to feel how was it to be a part of this great dreadnought-producing center.
6
Nauticalia

6) Nauticalia

The Nauticalia shop is specialized namely in the selling of sea-related souvenirs, presents and artifacts. The range of the things is indeed very large, diverse and one of the most interesting to be found in the area.
7
Semaphore Tower

7) Semaphore Tower

The Semaphore Tower was unfortunately seriously damaged by a fire at the beginning at the 20th century, yet today it was rebuilt and it now includes the resited Lion gate. The greatest reason for doing reconstruction was to accentuate the building's architectural historic importance for attracting tourists. The building's main aim is to be the Head Office of the Naval Base Commander and Queen's Harbour Master.
8
Royal Naval Museum

8) Royal Naval Museum (must see)

The Royal Naval Museum has 4 exhibition galleries to visit. It exibits such such artifacts as Nelson's Life Mask taken from his face at he beginning of the 19th century. One will also find the famous Enigma Machine, the very one that played a decisive role in the Battle of the Atlantic in 2nd World War. Of course it is interesting to learn about sea artifacts and guns that were used in battle at the time.
9
M33 - Batlle Ship

9) M33 - Batlle Ship

HMS M33 is an M29-class monitor of the Royal Navy. She saw active service in the Mediterranean during World War I and in Russia during the Allied Intervention in 1919. She was used subsequently as a mine-laying training ship, fuelling hulk, boom defence workshop and floating office, being renamed HMS Minerva and Hulk C23 during her long life. She passed to Hampshire County Council in the 1980s and as one of only two surviving Royal Navy World War I ships, was restored to original condition and is now located at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

M33 was built as part of the rapid ship construction campaign following the outbreak of World War I. Ordered in March 1915, she was launched in May and commissioned in June; an impressive shipbuilding feat especially considering that numerous other ships of her type were being built in the same period.

Armed with a pair of 6-inch (152 mm) guns and having a shallow draught, M33 was designed for coastal bombardment. Commanded by Lieutenant Commander Preston-Thomas, her first active operation was the support of the British landings at Suvla during the Battle of Gallipoli in August 1915. She remained stationed at Gallipoli until the evacuation in January, 1916. For the remainder of the war she served in the Mediterranean and was involved in the seizure of the Greek fleet at Salamis Bay on 1 September 1916.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
10
HMS Victory

10) HMS Victory (must see)

HMS Victory is a 104-gun first-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy, laid down in 1759 and launched in 1765. She is most famous as Lord Nelson's flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. She was also Keppel's flagship at Ushant, Howe's flagship at Cape Spartel and Jervis's flagship at Cape St Vincent. After 1824 she served as a harbour ship. In 1922 she was moved to a dry dock at Portsmouth, and preserved as a museum ship. She continues to be flagship of the Second Sea Lord and is the oldest naval ship still in commission.

The outline plans for the Victory arrived in June 1759 and were based on HMS Royal George which had been launched at Woolwich Dockyard in 1756. The naval architect chosen to design the ship was Sir Thomas Slade who, at the time, was the appointed Surveyor of the Navy. She was designed to carry at least 100 guns and was established with that number of guns; in practice, her armament varied from 104 to 106 guns and carronades. Victory attracts around 350,000 visitors per year in her role as a museum ship.

"(The above description is based on Wikipedia under Creative Common License)"
Sight description based on wikipedia
11
Mary Rose Museum

11) Mary Rose Museum (must see)

The Mary Rose Museum is a historical museum located at Historical Dockyards in Portsmouth in the United Kingdom run by the Mary Rose Trust. The museum is dedicated to the 16th century Tudor navy warship Mary Rose as well as the historical context in which she was active. The museum opened in 1984 and displays artefacts from the ship as well as the ship itself in a dedicated ship hall while it has been undergoing conservation. The Mary Rose was a carrack-type warship of the English Tudor navy of King Henry VIII. After serving for 33 years in several wars against France, Scotland and Brittany, and being substantially rebuilt in 1536, she saw her last action July 19, 1545. While leading the attack on the galleys of a French invasion fleet, she sank in the Solent, the straits north of the Isle of Wight.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Portsmouth, England

Create Your Own Walk in Portsmouth

Create Your Own Walk in Portsmouth

Creating your own self-guided walk in Portsmouth is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
City Orientation Walk

City Orientation Walk

One of England's most notable naval bases and ports, the city of Portsmouth is closely associated with sea. Still, despite its seafaring background, Portsmouth has quite a bit to offer its guests on the dry land as well. Follow this orientation walk to familiarize yourself with some interesting facts about historic and contemporary Portsmouth manifested in various sights and landmarks.

Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.9 km
Worship Places Tour in Portsmouth

Worship Places Tour in Portsmouth

The old church life in Portsmouth is not one of the richest, yet it is most closely connected to the local history and culture. Their history and origins are either connected to real historical events with true personages, or are based on old local legends. In taking the tour you will not only get acquainted with these events and stories but you will also enjoy fine sightseeing of these historical...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.9 km
Portsmouth Cultural Tour

Portsmouth Cultural Tour

Portsmouth is a city with rich history and preserved traditions, so its cultural life presents a point of interest for tourists from all over the world. Different museums and galleries will show you the city from different points of view, and the following tour will help you to feel as if you are a part of its cultural life.

Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.1 km

Tips for Exploring City on Foot at Your Own Pace

Whether you are in Portsmouth for a quick stopover or have a few days to see the city in more detail, exploring it on foot, at your own pace, is definitely the way to go. Here are some tips for you to save money, see the best Portsmouth has to offer, take good care of your feet while walking, and keep your mobile device – your ultimate "work horse" on this trip - well fed and safe.

Taking Care of Your Feet


To ensure ultimate satisfaction from a day of walking around the city as big as Portsmouth, it is imperative to take good care of your feet so as to avoid unpleasant things like blisters, cold or overheated soles, itchy, irritated or otherwise damaged (cracked) skin, etc. Luckily, these days there is no shortage of remedies to address (and, ideally, to prevent) these and other potential problems with feet. Among them: Compression Socks, Rechargeable Battery-Powered Thermo Socks for Cold Weather, Foot Repair Cream, Deodorant Powder, Shoes UV Sterilizer, and many more that you may wish to find a place in your travel kit for.

Travel Gadgets for Your Mobile Device


Your mobile phone or tablet will be your work horse on a self-guided walk. They offer tour map, guide you from one attraction to another, and provide informative background for the sights you wish to visit. Therefore it is absolutely essential to plan against unexpected power outages in the wrong place at the wrong time, much as to ensure the safety of your device.

For these and other contingencies, here's the list of useful appliances: Portable Charger/External Battery Pack, Worldwide Travel Charger Adapter, Power Converter for International Travel Adapter, and Mobile Device Leash.