Best Things to Do in Southampton
Southampton is a popular port city located in Hampshire, on the south coast of England with a population of around 250,000 people.
This city is a popular place to live and home students from all around the world who attend The University of Southampton, which is ranked in the top 100 universities in the world. Southampton is also where thousands of people embark on cruises around the world, the port is one of the busiest in the country.
If you are keen to plan a city break in the UK then Southampton is a great option. There are some fantastic tourist attractions, museums, galleries and also lots of great day trips you can do nearby. And now as more and more of us are taking staycations, it's exciting to explore new places.
If you are visiting Southampton and would like to stay longer than a day, then there are lots of places to stay in the city centre and surrounding areas. We recommend booking a hotel in Eastleigh, Southampton which is a popular location for exploring the city and places nearby.
Now check out our list of the top places to visit in Southampton.
1. SeaCity Museum
Based at the heart of Southampton, SeaCity Museum tells the story of the people of the city, their fascinating lives and historic connections with Titanic.
2. Solent Sky Museum
Have you got an interest in activation? A visit to the Solent Sky Museum is highly recommended. This museum showcases the history of aviation in Southampton and you can see lots of old planes.
3. Southampton City Art Gallery
The Southampton City Art Gallery is an art gallery in in the Civic Centre on Commercial Road. The gallery opened in 1939 with much of the initial funding from the gallery coming from two bequests one from Robert Chipperfield and another from Frederick William Smith.
4. Ocean Village
Ocean Village is really spectacular marina full of some of the most expensive yachts and ships in the country. You can wander round the village, get photos of the boats and visit one of the many cafes, shops and restaurants.
5. Riverside Park
Looking to relax and escape the busy city centre life? Head to Riverside Park for a relaxing break with open spaces, sports pitches, a skate park, three children play areas and a pretty riverside walk.
6. Town Walls
Southampton is a very historic city and the old town walls that run throughout are just over a mile in length. If you would like to walk the walls a popular place to start is Bargate. On the route you can check out old medieval wine vaults and churches and see amazing views over the ocean.
7. St Mary's Stadium
St Mary's Stadium is home to Southampton Football Club, one of the top teams in the UK. The stadium has a capacity of 32,384 and is currently the largest football stadium outside London in South England. Watching a live game here is highly recommended to soak up the atmosphere and traditional match day experience of a Premier league football club.
8. New Forest National Park
The New Forest is an excellent place to visit if you are keen to escape the city and immerse yourself in nature. You can experience ancient woodland, beautiful heathland, get close to animals like wild horses, see pretty villages and a stunning 40-mile coast.
9. The Isle of White
The Isle of Wight is an island located near Southampton just off the south coast of England. Thousands of tourists visit every year to enjoy it’s beaches and seafront promenades such as sandy Shanklin Beach and south-facing Ventnor Beach. You can also see dinosaur remains and fossils or head to the popular Needles attraction, with 3 huge, white chalk rocks, guarded by a 19th-century lighthouse.
Southampton is connected to the Isle of Wight via the port of East Cowes. On average, there are 19 crossings each day between Southampton and the Isle of Wight, which are operated by Red Funnel. Crossings from Southampton to East Cowes usually take around 1 hour.
10. Beach Day in Bournemouth
Keen to spend the day on the beach? Travel around 45 minutes down the coast and enjoy the beautiful beach in Bournemouth. This often gets voted one of the best places to see in the UK and with one of the most beautiful beaches which stretches for more than 7 miles.
More places to consider checking out if you have more time include:
- Manor Farm Country Park
- Southampton Common
- Sir Harold Hillier Gardens
- SS Shieldhall
- Medieval Merchant's House
- Southampton Boat Show