Top Family Attractions in Portsmouth, England

Posted on: April 28th, 2014 Posted by

 

portsmouth

 

Famous for being the UK’s only island city and for being a significant port over the centuries, Portsmouth is a fascinating destination for a short family break or day out. Located on the south coast and 64 miles from London, the city is easily accessible by public transport or by car, and has a great range of things to see and do. In this week’s blog, we have selected just a few of Portsmouth’s top attractions for families and kids.

 

clown fish on reef

 

Blue Reef Aquarium

A great choice for those days when the weather is not at its best, Blue Reef Aquarium is one of Portmouth’s leading family attractions. The award-winning aquarium has a diverse array of underwater creatures in 50 amazing exhibits which will delight youngsters and grown-ups alike. Highlights include sharks, otters and a vibrant coral reef, as well as a tank of native species found on the British coast. The aquarium is not only fun but educational too, with demonstrations and feeding displays on a daily basis.

 

spinnaker tower

 

Spinnaker Tower

The iconic Spinnaker Tower is located on Gunwharf Quay and offers visitors to Portsmouth the chance to see the city from great heights! A masterpiece of architecture and design, the impressive tower reaches 170 metres into the sky and provides unbeatable views over the city and beyond. Visitors to the tower don’t have to worry about a long march to the top either – the first two observation decks are accessible by lift, which is ideal if you have small children with you. Highlights include the fun I-View Interpretation system which helps visitors to spot local landmarks and the Sky Walk – a 7m glass floor located at 100 meters above sea level.

 

portsmouth dockyard

 

Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

Learn about the history of Portsmouth and its significance as a naval port at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. This large attraction has so much to offer that it is a day-out in itself and visitors should allow plenty of time to make sure that they fit in everything they want to see and do. The dockyard incorporates seven exhibits, including the HMS Alliance, where you can try a real periscope, and the recently opened Mary Rose Museum, where visitors can watch the ongoing restoration of an authentic Tudor ship.

 

boats

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Miniport

Miniport has two locations – one at Portsmouth Historical Dockyard and the other at Gunwharf Quays. Offering a unique and memorable family boating experience, visitors can hire a choice of quirky, specially-designed electric-powered miniature crafts, including a replica ferry, destroyer and life-boat. Each boat can be “crewed” by up to five, and needs no previous experience to pilot – its a safe and fun way to get out on the water and try a new skill!

 

 

Have you visited any of Portsmouth’s attractions?Tell us about your favourite. Or perhaps you are planning a trip to the city later this year – what will you do during your visit?

 

 

A Visit To Perth, Scotland – What to See & Do

Posted on: April 22nd, 2014 Posted by

 

Perth on river tay

 

With a history that stretches back to the prehistoric period, and a central location that is ideal as a base for exploring the Perthshire region, Perth is a great choice for couples and families looking for a different vacation destination. The bustling and friendly city sits on the banks of the River Tay and is an important cultural and economic centre, with lots to see and do. In this blog, we take a look at some of our favourite attractions in the Scottish city.

 

scone palace

 

Scone Palace

Perth’s most prestigious attraction is Scone Palace, the ancient crowning place of 42 kings of Scotland. With a rich history full of fascinating twists and turn, this historic house offers a unique way to learn about the Scottish history. Visitors can tour selected rooms of the main house, where antique furnishings, porcelain, art and heirlooms are on display, as well as the extensive grounds and gardens. The Palace also has several kids play areas, including a maze, and a souvenir shop which also offers a wide selection of locally sourced foods.

 

rhododendron

 

Branklyn Garden

Owned by The National Trust for Scotland, Branklyn Garden is a surprising haven filled with beautiful and unusual plant varieties from across the globe. Open daily throughout spring, summer and autumn, the garden is spread over two acres on Kinnoul Hill, with excellent views over Perth, and can be easily accessed on foot or bicycle, by car or bus. Highlights include blue Himalayan poppies, a magnificent rhododendron collection and the National Collection of Mylnefield Lilies. The Gardens have a small shop selling gifts and plants, with a pleasant outdoor area where visitors can enjoy a refreshments and coffee.

 

scottish bridge

 

Fair Maid’s House

If you are looking for something a little different to do on your visit to Perth, be sure not to miss out on Fair Maid’s House. Run by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society and housed within the oldest secular building in Perth, this attraction is free to enter (although donations are appreciated). The exhibits focus on geography and geology, using superb audio-visual technology to present a whole array of fascinating facts. Highlights include a 3 billion year old rock and the Explorers Room.

 

Are you planning a visit to Perth or have you already spent time in the city? Tell us which attractions you hope to see there, or which most impressed you – we’d love to hear your thoughts.

 

 

New Zealand Food Specialities

Posted on: April 15th, 2014 Posted by

 

new zealand

 

New Zealand’s cuisine is distinguished by a blend of European, Asia and Polynesia flavours in unique dishes which are made from local, seasonal ingredients. In this week’s blog, we take a look at the history of the nation’s cuisine, from traditional Maori cookery to the influences of other nationalities, and discover the food specialities that any traveller to New Zealand must be sure to try. Read the rest of this entry »

A Quick Guide to Menorca

Posted on: April 7th, 2014 Posted by

 

The most northerly, and second smallest of the Balearic Islands is Menorca, less well known than its sisters Majorca and Ibiza, but equally appealing for holiday-makers seeking out some spring and summer sun. Measuring around 47km in length and 19km at its widest point, Menorca has over 200km of coast-line, and its name comes from the word “minor”. In this blog, we guide you through what there is to see, the best local food and what to buy during a stay on the island. Read the rest of this entry »