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Trip PlannerEurope  /  UK  /  England  /  Hampshire  /  Portsmouth

Portsmouth

4.1
Military Museums · Specialty Museums · Observation Decks
Portsmouth is a port city and unitary authority in the ceremonial English county of Hampshire and is located south-west of London and south-east of Southampton. Portsmouth is mainly built upon on Portsea Island and is the United Kingdom's only island city. Portsmouth's population reached 205,400 in the most recent (2011) UK Census. The city forms part of the metropolitan South Hampshire built-up area, which also covers the city of Southampton and the towns of Havant, Waterlooville, Eastleigh, Fareham, and Gosport.The city's history can be traced to Roman times. A significant naval port for centuries, Portsmouth has the world's oldest dry dock and was England's first line of defence during the French invasion in 1545. Special Palmerston Forts were built in 1859 in anticipation of another invasion from continental Europe. By the early-19th century, Portsmouth was the most heavily fortified city in the world, and was considered "the world's greatest naval port" at the height of the British Empire throughout Pax Britannica. The world's first mass production line was set up in the city, making it the most industrialised site in the world. During the Second World War, the city was a pivotal embarkation point for the D-Day landings and was bombed extensively in the Portsmouth Blitz, which resulted in the deaths of 930 people. In 1982, a large proportion of the task force dispatched to liberate the Falkland Islands deployed from the city's naval base. Her Majesty's Yacht Britannia left the city to oversee the transfer of Hong Kong in 1997, which marked for many the end of the empire.
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Where to stay in Portsmouth

From top-quality luxury brands to boutique hotels and cozy B&Bs, lodging in Portsmouth is available to suit most travelers' needs and tastes.  To have easy access to the city major routes and main attractions, consider booking your rooms near Portsmouth's historical naval dockyard. Hotels in this area offer stylish rooms, excellent food, ample parking, and a wide range of recreational facilities, including spas, pools, and fitness centers. A range of trendy shops and restaurants are within walking distance, as are the ferry terminals to France and the Channel Islands.
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