With glorious parks, Southampton blooms with life at this time of year. Indeed, there is much to enjoy in and around this south coast city famous for the Titanic.
Southampton’s green spaces – ranked third among UK cities – are perhaps its most endearing feature. There are over 50 parks, with one of the loveliest being opposite the Lewis School of English, right in the city centre. Daffodils, azaleas, wisteria and roses each take centre stage as the season progresses.
Your springtime walk might continue through the Old Town, where you can explore some of the best-preserved medieval town walls in England, many of which border the buzzing streets of the main shopping areas, or the charming Tudor House Museum that charts 800 years of history.
Alternatively, you might follow the Titanic trail and step back in time to 1912, when the legendary cruise liner left Southampton on her tragic maiden voyage. Top tip: visit the excellent SeaCity Museum and then have a traditional afternoon tea at the Grand Café, once part of an elegant hotel where many first-class passengers stayed before boarding the ship. You may even see today’s modern cruise ships on your walk – Southampton remains the UK’s ‘cruise capital’.
Just a 15-minute train ride will take you to the beautiful cathedral city of Winchester or the New Forest National Park, ideal for walks and cycling. The latter is famous for its free-roaming ponies, and spring of course brings adorable baby foals! Elsewhere in the surrounding countryside, the Cuckoo Fair at Downton – with its traditional maypole dancing – and the Watercress Festival and steam train at New Alresford give a charming taste of rural England in spring. For longer day trips, London, Bath, Oxford, Stonehenge and the Isle of Wight are all within 60-90 minutes.
Whether you’re visiting on adult or junior programme (such as its popular Culture Week), Lewis School will help you discover the natural and cultural delights of Southampton and its surroundings, whatever the time of year.