Attractions and Places to Visit in Southampton

From fabulous art exhibitions at the City Art Gallery, discovering the city’s history at SeaCity Museum or Tudor House and Garden to seeing chart topping bands at Southampton O2 Guildhall, whatever your mood, Southampton has an attraction or activity to delight your senses.

The port of Southampton lies on a peninsula between the mouths of the Rivers Test and Itchen and boasts one of the world's largest natural harbors. Until the 1930s, it was England's busiest port for transatlantic passenger travel, and giant liners like the Queen Mary were built in local shipyards. Hundreds of thousands of emigrants departed the country on ships sailing from here, including the Titanic. It's still a busy port and is a fun place to watch large cruise and cargo ships come and go, especially from the excellent Hythe Ferry service that runs regularly across the Solent, the 20-mile-wide strait that separates the Isle of Wight from the mainland.

Excellent shopping facilities are both in and around the city, one of the best being Westquay, and the city also hosts many cultural events, such as the Southampton International Film Festival. Other popular things to do in Southampton include exploring the New Forest and the Isle of Wight, and nature lovers will also appreciate the city's many green spaces and parks, including the 326-acre Southampton Common. Another area of countryside to visit is nearby Itchen Valley Country Park, a beautiful 440-acre property offering great hiking and biking.

Netley Abbey

Netley Abbey

The magnificent ruins of Netley Abbey, founded in 1239, have inspired many English writers, poets, and artists over the years, most notably the painter John Constable.
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SeaCity Museum

SeaCity Museum

This innovative, state-of-the-art museum focuses on Southampton and its connection with the sea, including the city’s Titanic heritage and the stories of the people who have travelled in and out of the city through the ages.
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Tudor House and Garden

Tudor House and Garden

Encompassing over 900 years of history on one site, Southampton’s most important historic building, the Tudor House, has recently been restored with great new displays and facilities in the delightful setting of Southampton’s Old Town.
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Solent Sky

Solent Sky

Solent Sky uses a fantastic collection of models and photographs, as well as 19 magnificent flying machines, to tell the story of Southampton's aviation heritage.
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Southampton City Art Gallery

Southampton City Art Gallery

The gallery is internationally renowned for its permanent collection, spanning eight centuries, which tell the story of western art from the Renaissance to the present day. The core of the collection is twentieth century and contemporary British art.
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SS Shieldhall

SS Shieldhall

Part of Britain's National Historic Fleet, SS Shieldhall is the largest surviving working steamship of her type in Europe. Built in 1954 as one of the Clyde sludge boats, this impressive vessel has been fully restored.
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