Museums in Hampshire
Historic sites and museums in Hampshire have something for all ages, with plenty to keep the family entertained.
If you like aircraft, ships, outer space, local history, literature, castles, Roman villas or Iron Age forts it's all here in Hampshire.
Travel back in time at Milestones, Hampshire's Living History Museum in Basingstoke, where costumed actors help bring the streets of old to life and you can peruse the shops of yesteryear.
In the stunning Peninsula Barracks in Winchester you’ll find Winchester's Military Museums. This is an outstanding collection of five of the British Army's finest regiments including the Gurkha Museum and Horse Power - the Museum of the King's Royal Hussars.
Get ready for big bangs at Explosion! Museum of Naval Firepower at Gosport. In this award-winning, hands-on museum you can see the exciting big guns, torpedoes and missiles that have played such an important part in UK heritage.
If Mr Darcy gets your pulse racing, visit Jane Austen’s House Museum at Chawton, and stand behind the small table where the famous novelist wrote her popular works.
Some of Jane Austen’s clothes and jewellery are also on display and you can walk in the garden which she found so peaceful and inspiring.
For more museums in Hampshire, try the Royal Navy Submarine Museum at Gosport.
Here you can go on board Britain’s only surviving World War II ocean-going submarine and hear submariners’ compelling stories about life beneath the waves.
Visit Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and see Henry VIII’s flagship the Mary Rose, Nelson’s battleship the HMS Victory and Queen Victoria’s HMS Warrior 1860.
At the SeaCity museum in Southampton, find out how the Titanic disaster affected the lives of 500 families in the city.
Experience the sights and sounds of Southampton’s port in 1912, when it was home to 23 steamship companies such as White Star Line and Union Castle.
If you love cars old and new, visit the National Motor Museum at Beaulieu.
At Beaulieu you can find out about the history of motoring, from modern rally cars and F1 Grand Prix to Top Gear, James Bond and Del Boy’s Reliant Regal.
The family will also enjoy Palace House, the home of the Montagu family, historic Beaulieu Abbey and numerous other attractions such as a monorail ride and mini driving circuit for children.
Family Friendly Hampshire Museums
Once more on the literary trail, you can visit Selborne to see the historic house and garden which was home to naturalist and writer Gilbert White.
Here you’ll also find an exhibition devoted to explorer Frank Oates, otherwise known as Capt Lawrence Oates of Antarctic fame.
For a different Hampshire museums experience, why not travel by steam or heritage diesel train on the Watercress Line through the beautiful Hampshire countryside.
One of Hampshire's jewels in the crown is Winchester's 13th century Great Hall and the greatest symbol of medieval mythology, 'The Round Table of King Arthur'.
Winchester Cathedral boasts the longest nave in Europe, an ancient library and an atmospheric Norman crypt which houses the Sound II statue by Antony Gormley.
The medieval Hospital of St Cross in Winchester is a hidden gem nestling in the water meadows alongside the River Itchen, while tranquil Netley Abbey near Southampton has the extensive ruins of a 13th century Cistercian abbey.
If you would like any further tourism recommendations during your stay in Hampshire then there are a variety of different Tourist Information Centres you can visit anytime where our friendly staff will be more than happy to help you out.
Some of the things you can expect from our Tourist Information Centres include:
- A guide to the best things to do including visitor attractions and places to visit
- Useful accommodation and booking advice for hotels, B&Bs, holiday cottages and camping and caravan sites
- A what's on guide including information on the latest events and festivals
- Food and drink recommendations including restaurants, pubs and farmers' markets to visit
- Advice on walking, cycling, golf, fishing and horse riding locations
- Heritage information including guides to our stately homes, gardens and landmarks
- Advice and background information on different towns and villages in the region
- Transport, travel advice and information
- A wide range of maps, guides, books and brochures
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Visit Portsmouth Historic Dockyard for a truly memorable family day out!
Have a look for the heron stalking its prey and the brent geese coming into land after their 3000 km flight from the arctic. You can also learn about Portsmouth's geology and take a look at the Victorian Museum exhibition.
The displays are designed to allow visitors a view of the natural world as...
Sensitive restoration has returned this house to its mid 14th century appearence steeped in atmosphere. It is easy to imagine the life of John Fortin, a wine trader, and his family who lived here c1290.
Church built in 1212. Destroyed by fire bombs on 10 January 1941, but the chancel survived. King Charles II married there in 1662.
Three historic buildings, a tearoom and period garden.
The D-Day Museum was opened in 1984 to commemorate the 40th anniversary of D-Day. Its centrepiece is the magnificent Overlord Embroidery, a tribute to the sacrifice and heroism of those who took part in the operation.
A unique 18th Century village where warships for Nelson's Navy were built. Maritime museum, historic 18th Century cottages, riverside walk, SS Persia Exhibition, St Mary's Chapel and optional river cruise.
Visit the remains of the largest known Roman Villa in the area.
Built in 1544, the Castle was part of a series of fortifications constructed by Henry VIII around England's coasts to protect the country from invaders. FREE ENTRY.
Small terraced house of 1805 in which the famous novelist was born and lived for a short time. Restored and furnished to illustrate middle-class taste of the time.