When the pandemic hit, I started exploring a lot more of what the UK had to offer, rather than flying abroad for holidays. I discovered some beautiful cities such as York and promised to keep this up after my move to London.
So, when city life got a bit too much recently and I really needed to destress, I decided to visit the South Coast of England. My first port of call was Portsmouth, as I knew it had lots to offer in terms of shopping and cafes to work in but also beautiful beaches that are perfect for relaxing walks.
I booked a tiny room in an Airbnb hosted by the loveliest lady and took a train down with only a few days notice. I currently work remotely which meant I could book something so spontaneously. Leading up to the trip, I was a bit anxious whether it made sense to just go and work from the coast for a few days, but it was honestly such a good decision. I had a beautiful time with lots of sunshine and fresh air, met lovely people and finally relaxed a bit. I highly recommend taking a break from everyday life every so often in order to reflect, calm your mind and just realise that your world isn’t confined to the city you live in.
My favourite places in Portsmouth
The Historic Dockyard
This part of Portsmouth is right by the centre and starts with the HMS Warrior followed by a wide range of museums, a harbour tour, a dockyard, action stations and more. You need to book tickets to go inside where the museums are but it is well worth it. It also makes for beautiful pictures, especially at golden hour 🙂
This may have been my favourite area of Portsmouth. I just walked along the beach for ages, enjoyed the Pier and got some tea. The Pier makes for a cute photo backdrop as well! Overall, it was just super peaceful with stunning views.
Not that many people visit this area but it had some of the best views over the harbour and coastline. You can climb up the old city walls to get the view shown in the picture and walk along them for a good while. There are also lots of small, independent arts and crafts shops there with beautiful pieces for sale.
If you can’t tell by my many pictures of the Spinnaker Tower, it was easily my favourite photo subject in Portsmouth. I’m not even sure why, it just looked super impressive in person. I didn’t go up but I’ve heard it’s worth it if you enjoy seeing the coastal cities and British coastline in general. Gunwharf Quays is a lovely area in general, the outlet centre makes for great shopping and it’s always really nicely decorated. There are also tons of food places with lovely views of the water.
I definitely recommend visiting Portsmouth as a staycation (or even vacation if you’re not from the UK). It was so different from London and I loved the switch-up in my routine.
What was your last staycation? Where in the UK should I visit next?
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