Located on the south west coast of England, and dubbed Britain’s Ocean City, Plymouth offers a rich mixture of history, culture, shopping and dazzling ocean views. With a multitude of landmarks and popular attractions on the doorstep, this waterfront city has something for everyone.
Remnants of a rich military past remain at the heart of Plymouth. The city is famously known as the sailing place for Sir Francis Drake’s defeat of the Spanish Armada, and the Mayflower Steps are where the Pilgrim Fathers set sail for the New World in 1620. The area has been a significant naval base since the royal dockyard was established in 1690, and many other naval landmarks are scattered across the city. The Royal William Yard was established here in the mid 19th century, and is the largest collection of Grade 1 listed military buildings in Europe.
Another icon of historic interest is Smeaton’s Tower on Plymouth Hoe. Built originally in 1759 and later moved to its current location in the 1880’s, the lighthouse stands 72 feet tall and offers breathtaking views of Plymouth Sound. For a more in depth look at Plymouth’s fascinating history, visit the City Museum and Art gallery.
Despite its strong historical ties, Plymouth is by no means stuck in the past. With ongoing waterfront regeneration, the city is today becoming a cosmopolitan destination, full of entertainment and culture. The Theatre Royal plays host to a number of large scale productions, whilst the Pavilion offers live gigs and shows.
The Barbican is a great destination for shopping by day and al fresco dining by night. Set along cobbled streets with stunning waterfront views, the development houses a number of charming and unique shops from jewellers to antiques dealers and chocolatiers. The Blackfriar’s Distillery is also located here: famously home to Plymouth Gin.
Back in the city centre a vibrant shopping scene merges high street brands with independent boutiques with both undercover malls and quaint tree-lined streets.
The city is also home to the UK’s largest aquarium, the National Marine Aquarium. This fascinating underwater world offers fun for all the family. Other nearby attractions include the Dartmoor Zoo and Dartmoor National Park, just a short drive away.
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