Including places to go in Portsmouth
These are the best top attractions in Portsmouth for families. Portsmouth is in East Hampshire, just 25 minutes from central Southampton and 40 minutes from New Forest.
Portsmouth have loads of family-friendly attractions that will keep you amused regardless of the weather!
If you are looking for free things in Portsmouth then make sure you look at our post here.
For things to do in Hampshire have a look at:
What to do at Southsea Sea Front
The Full Guide to Things to do in Portsmouth
The Best Free Things to do in Portsmouth
Things to do ideas
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Portsmouth seafront tourist attractions
Southsea Sea Front is a great if your family wants to go scootering or for a bike ride on a flat surface. All the paths are flat and there are so many ways you can go!
Walk along the seafront a bit more and you’ll come to the lighthouse and Henry 8th Fort that the kids can walk around. The fields on this side are hilly but they are great to stand atop to watch the incoming ships come in.
Opposite the Seafront there is a huge green field that hosts a great playground as well as a great space for picnics and games.
Wherever you park along the seafront you have to pay but they do have toilets on either end of the piers and plenty of places to sit down if the kids get tired.
This stony beach covers 1.5 miles of the seafront. It’s a great place to visit on a sunny day. Bring your swimming trunks and go for a dip.
Portsmouth Historic Dockyard
Portsmouth Historic Dockyard is right on the Portsmouth seafront, just along from Gunwharf Quays. It’s a full day of fun and adventure for the whole family. The dockyard features HMS Warrior, HMS Victory, the Mary Rose museum, and everything you need to know about Lord Nelson.
We’ve been lucky enough to visit when a huge Royal Navy ship was in so keep a lookout as the dock is still actively used as a naval base.
Blue Reef Aquarium
Take a deep dive into our oceans and enjoy what they have to offer. See the sharks swimming over your head, see the rays and enjoy their stunning view of the seafront.
What we love the most is that they have a little splash park running outside in the summer months which is great as it overlooks the beach and they have a little cafe that has sweet treats and drinks. With it being right on the seafront you can pair it with going to the beach or one of the many piers along the seafront.
Emirates Spinnaker Tower
The Spinnaker Tower gives you great views of Portsmouth harbour and the South Coast. The Spinnaker Tower is based in Gunwharf Quays which is an outside shopping center that has some great cafes, restaurants, and shopping outlets.
Going up the tower normally takes about an hour and is great when paired with shopping at Gunwharf or boat spotting along the seafront.
Southsea Castle is based right on the seafront. While it does cost to go in, running around the outside of the fort is great fun for all the family. It’s on a big hill with loads of green space, perfect for a picnic and a fun afternoon by the seafront.
If you do decide to go in then be prepared to be amazed. Built by King Henry VIII in 1544, this was a fort that was made to protect the country! Walk around the keep and learn about what life was like to live in the castle. The ramparts give you the best views of the common and that’s where the cannons are housed. The tunnels were our favourite though as you can really imagine what it was like to have to run up and down them while under attack.
Clarence Pier is one of the largest amusement parks on the coast. The pier has everything from amusements, rides and activities to keep the whole family amused. They also have an indoor adventure playground that is open all year round.
What we love the most is that Clarence Pier is that it’s based on a ticket system so you buy as many tickets as you need.
They have loads of street food style options for the whole family including ice creams and sweets.
We love Canoe Lake! Canoe Lake has its own car park which is chargeable. The lake itself is huge which can be used as a little boating lake or as a dipping pond.
There is loads of grass to run around on and they have takeaway cafes which are great in the summer months. The playgrounds are great for younger kids too.
Southsea Model Village
This is a great little model village overlooking the seafront. Right next to Canoe Lake, Southsea Model Village gives you everything you need for a fun day out.
South Parade Pier
Kidz Island South Parade is perfect for younger kids who love fairground rides. The funfair is based on a band system and means that you can ride as many times as you like.
They also have classic arcades and have loads of options for food including fish and chips and ice cream.
Portsmouth city tourist attractions
These are the best places to go in Portsmouth with kids. Explore as many of these as you can as they are all great days out.
Porchester Castle is in Church Lane in Portchester. There are two small car parks that do get busy in the summer months so go early if you can. The castle is surrounded by the sea and it’s a great place to spot incoming boats. Inside the castle grounds, which are free to enter, are two huge fields. This is a great place to find hidden stones (they have a great Facebook page here) and let your kids run off some steam. Their cafe is great and they do have public toilets on site.
To go inside the castle there is a charge but it’s so worth it. Built-in the late 11th century, Porchester Castle can give you an insight into it’s Saxon history.
This is one of our favourite days out! They have a huge car park which is easy to find. It’s free to enter the museum. It’s a fully interactive museum that is great for the whole family. Make sure that you visit the tunnels as they are great fun to explore on even a rainy day.
Charles Dickins Museum
This museum is great for all Dickins fans. They offer loads of family events including a self-guided trail around the house.
Funland Hayling Island
Funland Hayling Island is great for all ages. Getting to the funfair early is a must as it does get busy in the summer and in the school holidays.
Parking for all day costs £2.50 and it’s cash only. Funland Hayling Island is a ticket and band system. They have loads of rides for all ages.
They have a whole section for the smaller kids including a classic carousel, small log flume, dinosaur ride and an elephant ride that goes up and down. The older kid area includes a mine roller coaster, log flume, twister and helter skelter.
Little Woodham is a 17th-century village that’s surrounded by woodland. You get to meet all the villagers who you would expect to see in a 17th-century village including a seamstress, cooks, blacksmith, and farmers. There is a charge to enter the village but they do take card. Parking is free and the toilets are near the car park. Take a packed lunch as they have a little tuck shop but that’s it when it comes to food and drink.
Titchfield Haven Country Park
This little country park is has parking on-site with a small cafe and toilets. Enjoy the long grass, the lake, and the tall trees that are great to spot wildlife.
The Alver Valley Country Park
Full of lovely wildflowers and sweeping trees, this country park has a great playground. Take a walk and see how much of the local wildlife you can see. It is a bit stony but great for walks with the whole family. Take your bikes and enjoy a ride through the forest or take a walk along the river for a great day out.
Staunton Country Park
Staunton Country Park has loads to offer the family of different ages. They have a working farm, beautiful gardens, and glasshouses that are a real sight to see. Parking is close but there is a short walk to the entrance. This is an all-day activity that is great for the whole family.
Queen Elizabeth Country Park
This country park lies within the South Downs National Park. It offers loads of family fun into loads of walks, cycle paths and playgrounds. Car parking charges do apply. Make sure you take a picnic and some fun games to play on the grass.
Ok, so Port Solent isn’t really a lake but it’s part of the waterfront that offers fun for the whole family. They have shops, cafes, and a walk along the front to see how many boats you can spot. It’s pushchair friendly and a great way to enjoy the seafront.
Home to loads of wildlife and birds, Baffins Pond also has a playground and green land. Bring a picnic and your bikes to really have a fun day out. There is parking on-site and it’s flat, so great for pushchairs too.
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This open grassland is great for a family day out. With reed beds and wild birds, this is a great place for kids who love animals. Bring a picnic in the warmer months and enjoy this flat landscape.
You can find Great Salterns at Burrfields Road, Portsmouth, PO3 5HH.
If you enjoyed this post and would like some more ideas on things to do in Hampshire then head over to the Things To Do section here on Things To Do In Hampshire With Kids where you’ll find over 50 day out ideas in Hampshire that the whole family will enjoy. You could also pop over and follow our Facebook page here or our Hampshire days out Pinterest boards for lots more ideas on what you can do as a family in Hampshire; Days Out For The Kids in Hampshire and Cheap and Free Days Out in Hampshire.
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