It is also the birthplace of Glyn Jones, one of its lesser known sons, who left this coastal idyll in pursuit of fame and glory in the Metropolis (where, as everyone outside London believes, the streets are paved with gold). Upon the completion of a major road project, the road between London and Portsmouth has reduced travelling time and made Portsmouth an easy day trip from London.
In a day’s tour to Portsmouth we would travel to Gunwharf Quay and head to the Spinnaker Tower for coffee. At 170m tall, the Emirates Spinnaker Tower offers spectacular views across the south coast from its Sky Deck. Venture across the glass Sky Walk to watch boats bobbing about beneath your feet or get hands-on and navigate a course around the harbour on the rib boat simulator.
Admiral Lord Nelson’s flagship, HMS Victory (the world’s oldest commissioned warship and the most famous in British naval history) and HMS Warrior (the world’s first iron-hulled, armoured warship, launched in 1860) are on display at the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, which is situated within a working naval base. The Dockyard is also home to the remains of the Mary Rose, King Henry VIII’s flagship, which sank off the coast of Portsmouth in 1545 and was raised from the seabed in 1982. The Mary Rose Museum has undergone the last stage of its restoration and 2016 sees it open its doors once again.
After lunch we head to Portsmouth’s D-Day Museum which tells the story of a pivotal event in the history of World War II – landings by Allied troops in Northern France on 6 June 1944. The museum’s centrepiece is the magnificent Overlord Embroidery which, at 83m long and taking five years to complete, is the largest work of its kind in the world.
It was commissioned as a tribute to the sacrifice and heroism of those who took part in the invasion. A dramatic presentation uses archive film to relive memories of the wartime years.
Prices are based from a start point in central London. Pick up point – Your guide will meet you at an agreed meeting place, usually at your hotel or apartment. If you are interested in a tour; please send your details and we will be in touch shortly.
“We could have saved a few bucks and taken a few trains to get to Windsor Castle, but we had the ease of Glyn driving us, telling us about the things we would see that day. We saw Windsor, Hampton Court, and, as a bonus, stopped by Abbey Road so he could take pictures of the four of us walking at the crosswalk. An excellent day, and excellent value. He was so good we paid for his lunch AND tipped him:-)”