Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

I'm the captain!
Wow, hasn't it been a blog-tastic week! Yesterday we travelled down to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard for a day out.  I had obtained a half-price family annual pass through the great deals that Eagle Radio offer for the summer holidays.  What's even better about this ticket, is it allows 2 adults and 3 children to visit - perfect for our family.

We got the train down as Southwest Trains were also offering some fab deals and the youngest two love going on the train. What could be bettter?  A nice hour's journey down and we arrived.

We queued up to change our voucher into a ticket and away we went. HMS Victory being our first stop.  The girls were very excited to see this ship although they did, at first, think it would take them out to sea so wondered why it was held up 'with wood'.  I haven't been on this ship since I was a child and now it seemed even more cramped and the steps even steeper. Can you imagine having to run up and down them and around the ship when it was out to sea...out to sea in rough seas....out to sea in rough seas in battle...you get my drift.  I feel seasick just thinking about it ;-)

Who stole the top of the mast?

Having had a good explore of Victory, we decided to get a bit of lunch as we'd arrived around 11.30am here and tummies were rumbling.  We went out of the dockyard to a fish and chip shop and sat at the seafront (well, boat yard where someone started a diesel generator up - ummm..goes well with lunch) and ate our food.  The girls were having fun waving their arms around saying the seagulls were going to eat their fish.  They were wrong - it was daddy who got in their first!

HMS Warrior
Back into the Dockyard we went and on to HMS Warrior.  This trip lasted about 5 minutes before the shout for toilets went up.  Away we went.  Having sorted everyone out, we decided to go into the Museum of the Royal Navy before heading back to Warrior.  We opted for the Naval History side rather than the Nelson side as I have been shown around here before and remembered about the interactive areas and the dressing up part.

Teenagers will sleep anywhere!
J found the interactive screens first. A few didn't seem to work (mainly ones with the big, push buttons) but the tablet sized ones were great. She was choosing a crew and supplies for a trip. She had fun picking alcohol only to take and seeing her crew were all drunk so didn't go into battle, or water and juices only finding they mutinied.  I had a go too - naturally I won the battle. The two youngest then had a go as well and enjoyed pressing the buttons.

The youngest two were fascinated with the swords, lances and canons.  They spent the rest of the time there trying to kill each other and everyone else that came along saying "BOOM!  Canonball. You're dead" or "Argh...I've spiked you. You have a to die now" pretending they had a lance or sword...*cough* oops.

The fancy dress part came next and they were straight in.  A lovely lady from the museum came up to tell us more about each piece they were putting on and helping them get dressed (I'm sure hubby and J were now having a go at pretending to shoot everyone as they were nowhere to be seen).  The girls loved putting the clothes on and when hubby and J arrived a few minutes later, we got a photo of us all. Hubby went for the captain's hat but as I said to him "there's only one captain of this family - and it's me!" ;-)  Great photo the lady took for us.

The girls then spent about another 20 minutes trying on different outfits.  They absolutely loved this area and I think could have stayed all day.

We headed off finally back to HMS Warrior to finish up the tour.

A barrel of monkeys

Amazing to see the pistons going round at the bottom.  So smooth.

As we arrived, we'd seen a wedding party heading off the ship and the staff were now preparing it for the reception.  What a lovely idea.

Having had a good look around, we headed back to the station and hopped on a train back home.

The girls have had a super day out and so have we. If you can get to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, I recommend you do. It's worth it.

Next time we'll be off to Explosion and the Submarine museum but the queue and timings for the boat weren't quite right for us today.


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