Plenty around Portsmouth for kids to go potty about. Kick off at The Peter Ashley Activity Centres, home to karate, mountain-biking, horse-riding, bouldering and much more. Or let off more steam in the Queen Elizabeth Country Park and refuel on locally sourced snacks at the Beechwood Café.
Young Federers can hone their backhand passing shots at the pay-and-play Southsea Tennis Club. Warm up on the ten-minute walk. Keep the bat-and-ball theme going at Canoe Lake Leisure, home to six floodlit all-weather tennis courts and eight tournament-grade grass courts.
Start your engines at Teamsport, the indoor go-karting experience in Gosport, with its challenging bends and white-knuckle straights. Stay with the indoor fun, with soft-play areas such as Monkey Bizness in Gosport and Horizon at Waterlooville. Or bounce yourself crazy at Flip Out Trampolines.
Enjoy a little five-a-side footie at Goals in Portsmouth (hey, you’ve enough for four teams), or climb the walls at Rock-Up Indoor Climbing in Whiteley or at Red Spider Indoor Bouldering. There’s outdoor action on offer at Purbrook Activity Centre, and the largest standalone planetarium in the UK at Winchester Science Centre.
At Southshore, you’re in the heart of the action. Take a five-minute dawdle down to the seafront. Pop out to the castle, an artillery fort built by Henry VIII, to the retro Clarence Pier amusement park, to Gunwharf Quays shopping centre, or to the buzzing bars and shopping streets of Southsea.
Also walkable are the Emirates Spinnaker Tower: whether you’re taking in the panoramic views, skipping across the glass floor, eating, drinking or even abseiling, a top-of-the-world feeling is guaranteed. Or head to Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard to see HMS Victory or discover a working naval base from the water.
Dive into more history at the D-Day Story, eight minutes away on foot and offering personal accounts of people who were there and brought to life with stunning audio-visual presentations. Or book a red seat and grab a slice of culture at Portsmouth’s Kings Theatre.
Hire kayaks and paddleboards at The Paddle Club. Replenish lost energy with coffees, cakes and savouries from Salt café. Learn how to ride powerboats, jet-skis or motor cruises with Portsmouth Marine Training. Charter a yacht with Sunsail. Or get an art fix at Hot Walls or Aspex galleries.
Hen parties are all about relaxing during the day and raving at night. Or maybe just more relaxing. You can do all that in and around Portsmouth. Kick off at the Portsmouth Marriott for a full menu of on-site spa treatments, including facials, fitness classes, waxing, eye treatments, manicures and massages.
Bag some clay pigeons at Spitfire Shoot. Zorb on land or water at Leisure Matters. Refuel with afternoon tea at Langstone Quays and munch your way through warm fruit scones with clotted cream and strawberry preserve, banana cake, lemon drizzle cake, tartlets and mozzarella crostinis.
Mix, muddle and mash your own cocktail masterclass and make a perfect fresh-and-fruity Mojito or Espresso Martini at All Bar One in Portsmouth. Book a cookery class at Limewood or Chewton Glen. Or take a Treasure Trail around Gosport or Portsmouth.
Pick from a number of fiendishly difficult room escapes with other World Escapes in Portsmouth. Catch the sunset with a cocktail on a Portsmouth Harbour cruise. Head to the bright lights to sink cocktails at The Lyberry, or throw some shapes at Pryzm or Popworld.