Image of Boathouse 4

Book Tickets Online



After a major refurbishment, Boathouse 4 has reopened and is now home to the International Boatbuilding College. Assisted by Portsmouth and Highbury colleges, this venture helps train a new generation of students in the techniques of traditional boatbuilding and other related skills, which are still very much required today to build and conserve wooden boats.

Overlooking the boat building college is a naval exhibition that provides visitors with the opportunity to discover the fascinating world of small boats - which were the backbone of the Royal Navy. Ships such as HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and The Mary Rose would not have seen the success they did had it not have been for the small craft ferrying their food supplies and troops from the docks.

This exciting new exhibition in Boathouse 4 tells the story of small craft, from wooden cutters that ferried Lord Nelson to and from his flagship, to powerful motorboats that helped win WW1. The exhibition features a range of innovative interactive exhibits which bring these small craft to life!

Take a seat in the activity boat and see if you can row in time with the other sailors. Test your strength on 'lift yourself’ and learn about how different weight distributions can make lifting even the heaviest of boats the easiest of tasks. Enter the boat theatre and learn the heroic exploits of the Coastal Forces and daring missions of the WW2 motor boats. For those visitors feeling extra courageous, you can put your wits to the test by scaling the amazing ‘Mast & Rigging’ experience to see if you've got what it takes to make it to the top of the crow’s nest! (small extra fee applies)

This mezzanine floor area, overlooking the college trainees busy at work, offers visitors of all ages the opportunity to explore the UK’s largest collection of small Royal Naval craft and find out about their role at the sharp end of naval operations.

Book Tickets

Guide Prices

Ticket TypeTicket Tariff
Free admissionFree

Boathouse 4 is free to enter.



  • Accessible Lift
  • All Areas Accessible to Disabled Visitors
  • Guide Dogs Permitted
  • Parking Areas for Disabled Visitors
  • Wheelchair user accessible


  • On-Site cafe/restaurant
  • Picnic Site

Establishment Features

  • Event Venue
  • Open all year round
  • Open New Year
  • Toilets

Parking & Transport

  • Parking (charge)

Provider Preferences

  • Indoor Attraction
  • No Smoking Attraction

Specialist Features

  • Family Fun
  • Marketed Towards Children
  • Marketed Towards Families
  • Marketed Towards Senior Citizens
  • Marketed towards student/youth

Tours and Demonstrations

  • Demonstrations Given
  • Educational Visits Accepted
  • Guided Tours Available for Groups


Map & Directions

Boathouse 4


Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, College Road, H M Naval Base, Portsmouth, Hants, PO1 3LJ
Close window

Call direct on:

Tel023 9289 3338

Opening Times

Winter Opening Hours (1 Nov 2023 - 31 Mar 2024)
Monday - Sunday10:00 - 17:00*
Summer Opening Hours (1 Apr 2024 - 31 Oct 2024)
Monday - Sunday10:00 - 17:30*
Dates and times marked with a '*' are provisional and may be subject to change

What's Nearby

  1. Portsmouth Historic Dockyard is the UK’s premier destination for naval history.

    0.02 miles away
  2. Boathouse 4 runs Falklands Landing Craft F8 trips around Portsmouth Harbour.

    0.03 miles away
  3. No.6 Cinema is Portsmouth's premier independent cinema, showing some arthouse gems and…

    0.05 miles away
  1. Take a free walking tour around historic Old Portsmouth - focusing on the lives, loves…

    0.07 miles away
  2. Visit the local haunts of Portsmouth to get a new perspective of the city and discover…

    0.08 miles away
  3. Have fun discovering Portsmouth with two self-guided, heritage walks with an optional…

    0.09 miles away
  4. The Gosport Ferry is the quickest way to get between Portsmouth and Gosport - all the…

    0.15 miles away
  5. Baby Squids Portsmouth offers swimming lessons to children from birth up to four years…

    0.16 miles away
  6. Experience The Mary Rose as never before at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

    0.18 miles away
  7. Vue Portsmouth is a modern 14 screen multiplex situated in the Gunwharf Quays complex,…

    0.18 miles away
  8. Spitbank Fort is an exclusive venue on the south coast, and is its own private island for…

    0.23 miles away
  9. Be ready for an entertaining, guided bike tour of the city of Portsmouth.

    0.23 miles away
  10. Groundlings is a unique Georgian Theatre that hosts a rich and varied programme of events…

    0.25 miles away
  11. ​​​​​​​​Experience the view from the stunning 170-metre icon of the South Coast.

    0.25 miles away
  12. The new look casino features a private bar which offers live performances seven days a…

    0.26 miles away
Previous Next


Family at Portsmouth Historic DockyardPortsmouth Historic Dockyard, PortsmouthPortsmouth Historic Dockyard is the UK’s premier destination for naval history.

Don't Miss