Situated on England’s south coast, if there are any aquaphobes in your touring party, you can perhaps already see them uttering profanities and expletives under their breath. Rest assured, you can have a jolly good time in Southampton without even sighting the coast, such is the heterogeneity of the city. The largest city within Hampshire (253,651 occupants), it is seeded in a rich history with its 13th century stone walls a sterling illustration of that. From the city’s Premier League football team (1st division) to the historic sights to the artistic expressions, there’s plenty to sink your teeth into!
The Mayflower Theatre
Positioned in close proximity to Southampton Central station, the Grade II listed, 2000-seater and not to mention, 90-year-old Mayflower Theatre has played host to some top West End productions.
From ‘West Side Story’ to ‘Les Misérables’ to ‘Hairspray’ you would be surprised to learn that the theatre is not just restricted to dramas and musicals but has also lured distinguished musical acts such as the Rolling Stones and Kate Bush. If you want to keep it light and have a no thinking day, you could browse the programme for comedies, with humourists such as Ricky Gervais and Jimmy Carr also having graced the theatre with their presence in the past.
If none of the above float your boat, then possibly immersive theatre would? You may check the website for events that involve live actors.
The City Walls
In case the memo was lost somewhere, Southampton is very old, dating as far back as the stone age, with the City Walls having surfaced in the 13th century. This hallowed edifice is the third longest unbroken stretch of city wall in Britain!
So get discovering! Wander along its centuries-old walkways, arches and turrets that are strewn across the Old Town. What’s more is that they’re absolutely free to explore and have information boards every so often to ensure that you can be your own guide.
If you like your outings to be pre-planned, you may download this guide that will make certain you have an structured exploration with all the information you possibly need right on your fingertips.
St. Mary’s Stadium
Home to Premier League club Southampton FC, St. Mary’s Stadium has a generous capacity of 32,689 and is packed to the rafters on most matchdays. Hence, if you happen to be in Southampton during a game day and seek to get a dose of fabled English football, St. Mary’s surely won’t disappoint.
A word of caution though, set just east of Southampton’s city centre, in the docks area (less than a mile from High Street), the location is rather unappealing, with a mixture of docks and light industry forming your surroundings. Thus, eating and drinking would best be done in the city centre.
If you would like to bare witness to the dressing room, the players tunnel and the warm-up room then you can book a guided stadium tour that will last 90 mins and set you back £15. The particulars to make the aforementioned happen are: Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call +44 (0) 845 688 9370
Forming part of Britain’s National Historic Fleet, SS Shieldhall is the largest surviving, functional steamship of her kind in Britain at present and serves as a sea going tribute to British maritime legacy.
Originally put together in 1954, this remarkable vessel has been reconditioned to its former glory and serves as an example of great ships that plied the world’s oceans between the 1870’s and 1960’s.
Located at Berth 110, Southampton. In addition to sightseeing and educational outings, Shieldhall is also available for private charter or for hire as a venue. For bookings and more info, click here.
A few other noteworthy sights: Tudor House and Garden, Caskaway Tasting Rooms, Ocean Village and Netley Abbey