The Mary Rose and Portsmouth's Maritime History

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  • Overview
  • Itinerary
  • What's Included
  • Dates
  • Travel Editions

Special Event highlights:

  • Two talks by Christopher Dobbs, Head of Interpretation for the Mary Rose Trust
  • A private viewing of the extensive and fascinating artefacts at the new Mary Rose Museum
  • A day discovering Portsmouth's maritime history at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and Southsea Castle

On his ascent to the throne in 1509, and faced with ever-present threats from France and Scotland, Henry VIII begun to build up his navy. Mary Rose was to become the pride of Henry's fleet, but after 34 years of service in 1545, she sank in the Solent whilst leading to attack on a French invasion fleet. Here she lay undisturbed until her rediscovery in 1971 and then excavation and salvage in 1982, a milstone in the field of maritime archaeology which uncovered a wonderfully preserved Tudor time capsule. 

On May 31st 2013 the brand new Mary Rose Museum opened in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. The museum tells the story of Henry VIII's flagship and displays the many priceless and fascinating objects found in and around the wreck. You will: enjoy two talks about the Mary Rose; spend a day exploring Portsmouth Historic Dockyard before returning for a private evening at the Mary Rose Museum; visit Southsea Castle where Henry witnessed Mary Rose founder and Fort Nelson, home to the Royal Armouries national collection of artillery.  


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More Info

Please note that all our UK tours start and finish at the relevant hotel. 

You can normally check in from 3pm onwards but hotels will always be happy to store your luggage if you arrive earlier in the day. 

For full details of how to get to the hotel, directions and the nearest train station, please click on the hotel website or call our office for details. These will also be sent automatically with your confirmation.

The welcome reception and first evening dinner / talk will commence at about 7pm - full details will be sent with your joining instructions about 10 days prior to the arrival date. 

On the final day, return to the hotel is usualy at about 4-5 pm. It is difficult to advise accurate timings as this can vary from one day to another due to traffic conditions, the size and mobility of the group or other factors. But we normally aim to finish no later than 5pm to allow clients a reasonable amount of time to get home. 

If you have a problem with your room please alert your tour manager and/or hotel management as soon as possible to either rectify the problem or change your room. It is often possible to resolve a problem very quickly if we are made aware of it - impossible to do so after the event.

PLEASE NOTE: transport to and from the hotel venue is NOT included 

Travel Editions recommends a luggage delivery service called thebaggageman, where your suitcase can be picked up from your home before departure and delivered straight to your hotel; therefore removing the worry about carrying your cases onto and off the trains. Please click here for more information and we have arranged a 10% discount exclusive to Travel Editions clients off the thebaggageman service. Tel: 01844 264890.

On departure, please ensure that you have paid for any extras such as drinks, telephone calls etc 

Please note your ticket to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard is only valid for a one day visit. 

Places of Interest

Full details can be found in the detailed itinerary of this UK short break

Click here to go to the detailed itinerary


Marriott Portsmouth 
The four-star Marriott Portsmouth is located near to Port Solent Marina and a short drive away from the historic dockyards and Spinnaker Tower. Facilities at the hotel include a restaurant, bar and lounge, fitness centre, indoor swimming pool and comfortable bedrooms with private en-suite bathroom, TV, telephone, air-conditioning, minibar, hairdryer and tea/coffee making facilities. Complimentary car parking is available at the hotel. 

Marriott Portsmouth Hotel Website

  • Europe
  • United Kingdom
  • Gallipoli
  • Portsmouth
  • England
Tour Types
  • Seniors
  • History
  • UK Breaks
  • 50 plus

Day 1: Arrive independently at the Marriott Portsmouth Hotel from 15.00. This evening there will be a welcome reception and private dinner with wine followed by a talk by Christopher Dobbs, Head of Interpretation for the Mary Rose Trust, 'Diving on the Mary Rose'. On October 11 1982, the Mary Rose was finally raised to the surface after 17 years of search, survey and excavation. Christopher Dobbs, a maritime archaeologist and professional diver was on the team that worked on the excavation and salvage of this historic ship between 1979 and 1982. Christopher's lecture will illustrate what it was like to find objects inside the wreck during the excavations and to be one of the divers under the water as the ship was raised from the seabed.

Day 2: Today you will have time to explore the museums and ships of Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. The historic dockyard plays host to Admiral Lord Nelson's HMS Victory and the Trafalgar Experience, the Victorian iron-clad HMS Warrior, the National Museum of the Royal Navy, and HMS M33 a gunboat that fought in the Gallipoli campaign of 1915-16. Returning to the hotel in the afternoon, there will be a late afternoon dinner in the hotel restaurant and time to prepare for the highlight of the weekend, a private viewing of the newly updated Mary Rose Museum. On arrival at the museum you will enjoy a drinks reception and another talk by Christopher Dobbs who will give unique insights into the formation of the exhibition and why the objects uncovered are so special. After this you will have a private viewing of thousands of the objects raised during the excavations. many of which were not on display in the old museum, ranging from bronze guns bearing Henry VIII's ciphers and crowns to whole sets of pewter, and even a plain wooden shovel, one of many objects found by Mr Dobbs himself.

Day 3: Our coach will take us on a tour through old Portsmouth, viewing the sites that remain from the Tudor period and stopping at Southsea Castle (excluding November 2018 departure - you will instead visit Portchester Castle), one of Henry VIII's forts built to defend the south coast of England in 1544. It was from here that Henry witnessed the sinking of his flagship Mary Rose in the Battle of the Solent in 1545. The day will also include a visit to Fort Nelson, home to the Royal Armouries national collection of artillery - the Big Guns. Positioned atop Portsdown Hill with panoramic views across the Meon Valley and Portsmouth Harbour we will be able to view the development of artillery from pre-gunpowder siege machines to modern-day super guns. Also during the day we will go up the Spinnaker Tower to gain a magnificent view across to the Isle of Wight and see the layout for the Battle of the Solent during which the Mary Rose capsized and sank in 1545. Return to the hotel for approximately 17.30. 

NB: Exact order of excursions may vary according to local conditions and tour manager's discretion

Please note: Extra nights are available at a supplement, please click here or on the availability tab above to select your date of travel and extra night rates.

Please note: The Ministry of Defence carries out occasional security checks at the Historic Dockyard, so please bring a piece if photo ID on this tour or it is possible that you may not be allowed access.

Please note the maximum group size is 120 passengers. 


  • Two nights' bed and full breakfast at the four-star Marriott Portsmouth, based on shared occupancy of a twin/double room
  • Welcome reception
  • First night private three-course dinner with wine 
  • Second day early evening dinner in the hotel restaurant 
  • Private evening with drinks reception at the Mary Rose Museum 
  • All visits and entrance fees 
  • Coach transfers and tour manager throughout 


  • Transport to the hotel is not included
  • Single room supplement 
  • Extra nights on bed & breakfast basis 
  • Holiday insurance 
  • Meals other than those stated 
  • Items of a personal nature such as drinks, laundry, telephone calls etc 
  • Porterage and gratuities 

You will have the option to book your own flights independently with the operator.

Dates Price Single Availability
01-Oct-2021 for 2 Nights View live deal View live deal

Touring with Travel Editions

Offering a wide range of extended tours and cultural short breaks for the discerning traveller, Travel Editions was established in 1994 and is now one of the leading specialist independent escorted tour operators in the UK. The company started with the idea of creating itineraries that were not readily available on the high street, and the team still remains focused on offering escorted tours that appeal to travellers rather than tourists.

Over the years, Travel Editions has developed and diversified its range of escorted tours to include rail tours, air tours, history tours, Christmas tours and even specialist interest tours that have specific appeal for walkers, foodies, art lovers, music addicts and flower enthusiasts. From enjoying wonderful walks and tasty local cuisine in Crete to visiting the art nouveau buildings of Milan and exploring the architectural gems of the Netherlands, Travel Editions creates amazing tours to suit every budget and interest.

As rail transport is one of the most environmentally friendly ways to travel, the company has carefully developed nearly 30 exciting escorted rail tours that include trips to France, Spain, Brussels, Arnhem, Luxembourg and the Italian Riviera. Travel Editions believes that the journey becomes part of the holiday, and is why this specialist tour operator also offers a range of tours by air, such as Delphi and Mount Pelion in Greece, the beautiful Italian city of Florence, and Paphos, Nicosia and the Troodos Mountains in Cyprus. Whatever the escorted tour or the destination, Travel Editions provides holidays that are packed full of cultural and historic treasures, as well as plenty of free time to relax and soak up the local atmosphere and the regional food and wine.

One of the best things about Travel Editions is that the team can tailor-make all tours to your group’s budget and specification, be it shopping till you drop in New York or tasting the most delicious gastronomic delights of Sicily. Not only can the activities be tailored to meet your requirements but so can the travel options, hotel selection (three, four or five-star hotel) and the whole itinerary. Alternatively, you can simply pick one of the many carefully curated escorted tours listed on the Travel Editions website.

In almost all cases, daily excursions are included in the price of a trip, and all excursions are taken by private coach. The size of the group varies depending on the escorted tour, and Travel Editions limits some holidays to lower numbers to suit the nature of the specific holiday. Walking, culinary and special interest tours are limited to approximately 20-30 passengers, and the Europe by Rail and Europe by Air holidays are limited to a maximum of 35 passengers. Then there’s the UK British Heritage Tours with a maximum capacity of 49, however, some are much less than this. No matter which tours you choose, you will never feel as though you are in a big group.

Travel Editions is passionate about delivering a personal service every step of the way, and its team of experts will arrange your holiday with minimum fuss and maximum effort. Customer service and attention to detail are at the heart of everything they do, plus you will always be treated as an individual and get the benefit of affordable prices by travelling as a group. Another bonus is that Travel Editions is ABTA and ATOL protected, which means your money and your holiday will be protected from the moment you book.

In addition to offering extended tours and cultural short breaks, Travel Editions offers a large range of special events in the UK that bring the culture and history of the United Kingdom to life. These events can be found in the Art & History Abroad programme and include expert speakers, entertaining concerts and impressive dinners in historic locations.




tour details

This tour is operated by Travel Editions

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