Chantel Stevenson of Pegasus Finance, specialists in motorhome and caravan finance, shares her view on the best staycation spots in Portsmouth.

The revival of the Great British staycation means that, once again, holidaymakers in search of sun, sea and sand are taking a look at somewhere closer to home. Each year, jetting off to far-away lands is becoming less appealing - and it’s not hard to see why when you consider the outstanding natural beauty and fantastic attractions right on our doorstep!

Situated on the south coast, the island city of Portsmouth offers everything from a rich naval history to contemporary arts and stunning panoramas stretching across the entire waterfront. With the summer in full swing, it's an ideal time to explore Portsmouth’s great outdoors. Today, we’re bringing you a handpicked selection of the best local holiday parks and campsites - as well as the low-down on the top things to see and do on your next visit.

Where to stay

Harbourside Park

What could be better than waking up to waterfront views across Langstone Harbour - a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest? Watch the boats sail past from the comfort of your own holiday lodge, or play a round of golf at the nearby Great Salterns course. Just five minutes from ‘the great waterfront city’, Harbourside Park is a real luxury to return to after an action-packed day spent exploring Portsmouth.

Southsea Leisure Park

Sleep under the stars with a stay at Southsea Leisure Park. Located at the easternmost point of the island, this park is literally a stone's throw from the beach, offering views across the Solent. Southsea Leisure Park, which features an adventure park for the children and an on-site bar for the adults, is certainly fun for all the family! Whether you’re looking to soak in a hot tub at a luxury lodge, camp under the stars, or pitch-up in your own touring caravan, you’re sure to find an accommodation option that suits. A visit to the Tenth Hole pitch and putt is a must, followed by a stop off at its tearooms for the best cake in town!

Fishery Creek Touring Park

Just 12 miles from Portsmouth, Fishery Creek can be found across the water on Hayling Island. This idyllic Hampshire camping spot is situated on the tidal creek of Chichester Harbour, boasting views of the area’s outstanding natural beauty. Just a short stroll from the award-winning Blue Flag beach, and with access to launch small watercraft from the harbour, this seaside resort is all about celebrating the stunning coastline.

Top five things to do in and around Portsmouth

1. Scale the Spinnaker Tower

Soaring 170 meters above the Portsmouth skyline, the Spinnaker Tower has become emblematic of the entire city. Since its completion in 2005, this landmark towers above even the likes of the London Eye, Blackpool Tower and Big Ben. The iconic structure provides the perfect platform to see one of the most captivating panoramas in the UK, offering views on good days of up to 23 miles. The tower's design was chosen by the people of Portsmouth to highlight the city's nautical past. It's more than just a viewing platform, though, as the Spinnaker Tower has gone on to host live radio broadcasts, acoustic sets, comedy gigs and even BBC’s Stargazing Live.

2. Take in some history at Southsea Castle

It's said that King Henry VIII watched the sinking of his iconic warship, the Mary Rose, from within the walls of Southsea Castle - a great, imposing fortification that he helped design. Fast forward nearly a century to the English Civil War and the castle saw live action once again, as it was captured by Parliamentarian forces. Now the castle is a popular tourist attraction; the ideal spot to immerse yourself in history and heritage. Enter the tunnels for yourself, or climb to the top of the keep for panoramic views of the Isle of Wight and Solent.

3. Visit Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

Nestled within a working Naval Base, the historic Portsmouth Dockyard is the home to a wide collection of historic ships and museums. Here, visitors are able to explore the Royal Navy’s illustrious past, present and future. If the Royal Marine museum, HMS Victory and the 1860 HMS Warrior don’t provide enough to see and do, why not take a boat trip around the Solent forts on a harbour tour? Portsmouth Dockyard harbours an abundance of sailing heritage and its engaging exhibitions are fun for all the family.

4. Dip your toes in at Southsea Beach

For an authentic British seaside holiday experience, a trip to Southsea’s shingle beach is a must. This picturesque coastline offers a whole host of things to do all year round. From skimming stones on the seafront to the bright lights of Clarence Pier - there’s plenty to see and do. If the sun fails to shine, Southsea’s Blue Reef Aquarium offers plenty of shelter and rainy-day entertainment.

5. Hop across to the Isle of Wight

The 10-minute hovercraft journey from Southsea to Ryde makes the Isle of Wight a perfect choice for an island-hopping day trip. From award winning beaches to rugged clifftop scenery and ancient forests - the Isle of Wight is a nature-lover’s paradise. Whether you want to spend the day at the beach or explore one of the many charming market towns and villages, it’s well worth the trip. Just don’t forget your sun-cream for this island-escape - the Isle of Wight’s micro-climate means it hosts the warmest weather in Britain!

As if the history, culture and serene surroundings weren’t enough - the island city of Portsmouth boasts everything you’ll need for an afternoon of retail therapy. With over 90 famous brands on offer at Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth really does have it all.

What are you waiting for? Join the Great British staycation and Visit Portsmouth this summer!

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