There is loads of family fun to be found across the city but Southampton is also a great base for exploring Hampshire and the south coast.
Fifteen miles west of Southampton is the New Forest, a national park of open heath, ancient woodlands and plenty of family attractions. Here you’ll find the world-famous Beaulieu home of the National Motor Museum, Palace House and World of Top Gear. A short journey down the road and you’ll discover Bucklers Hard Maritime Museum on the banks of the Beaulieu River. The New Forest is also home to the New Forest Wildlife Park offering a lovely family day out with plenty to see from Otters to Wolves!
Take a Red Funnel ferry or the Red Jet to the Isle of Wight for a day visit or relaxing break. The stunning island destination is a short distance from Southampton with unspoilt scenery and a wealth of family attractions including Dinosaur Isle, Britain’s first purpose built dinosaur museum and visitor attraction.
To the east, approximately 25 miles from Southampton lies the historic waterside city of Portsmouth, home of Fort Nelson. Strategically positioned on Portsdown Hill Fort Nelson is a historic monument and home to the Royal Armouries National Collection of Artillery.
Travelling up the M3 you come to the historic city of Winchester and home to the Winchester Cathedral one of the largest cathedrals in Europe. Just on the outskirts of Winchester you’ll find Marwell Zoo where you can get close to wonders of the natural world, and for a more adult day out and for Gin-lovers the Bombay Sapphire Distillery in Whitchurch is a must!
Described as the beautiful breathing space between the cities of Southampton and Portsmouth, and less than ten miles east of Southampton, the Hamble Valley is a picturesque area of coast and countryside with waterside villages along the River Hamble.