As the summer months approach, and the sunny weather (hopefully) holding strong, the search for entertainment to while away the warm days becomes a topic of keen discussion. All of our Bargate team members live in Hampshire, so we’ve got a pretty good steer as to the best experiences, the best days out – for young and old alike – to keep you occupied this summer. Here’s just a small selection of our favourites…
The Mary Rose Museum, Portsmouth
Located in the Historic Dockyards of Portsmouth, the museum for the flagship of King Henry VIII re-opened in 2013. A modern technological marvel, the new museum was constructed entirely around the hull of the 16th century ship in-situ, to enable the preservation of the ship’s remains during the build process. The museum today showcases the ship’s hull and all of the remaining artefacts in context, offering an unparalleled insight into one of the defining examples of British naval history.
Bombay Sapphire Distillery, Laverstoke
Amongst the leafy outskirts of Whitchurch, the former Laverstoke papermill has been lovingly restored as the distillery for one of the most renowned spirit manufacturers in the world. The faithful renovation of the original buildings is juxtaposed by the iconic, Wonka-esque botanical glasshouses that form the centrepiece of a thoroughly entertaining journey through the history of Bombay Sapphire and its production process (and yes – you do get a chance to sample the product!).
Paulton’s Park, Romsey
This one’s most definitely for the kids – the UK’s highest rated theme park aimed at children, Paulton Park features a feast of family attractions – including the wildly popular Peppa Pig World – with new rides and features added regularly. Whether visiting for just one day or a short break, the park’s surroundings in Romsey offer a great selection of attractions for adults, too.
Jane Austen’s House Museum, Chawton
Discover the inspiration behind some of the most famous novels in English literature, at the former residence of author Jane Austen, now converted into a charming museum that chronicles her life and works. Chawton itself offers even more, as the nearby Chawton House was owned by the author’s brother and was a regular haunt, now housing the Centre for the Study of Early Women’s Writing, in her honour.
South Downs Way, from Winchester
Last – but most certainly not least – comes one that might just take longer than a single day, but from which you can savour some of the finest sights and sounds to be found in the entire region. Starting from the cathedral city of Winchester, and undulating for over 100 miles through the Hampshire countryside, you’ll pass through such highlights as Cheesefoot Head, The Long Man of Wilmington, and famous cliffs at Beachy Head before its end at Eastbourne. Whether walking or cycling, the South Downs Way provides a stern challenge and an exhilarating experience.