Many think of Plymouth as the regional capital of Devon and Cornwall. A trading post throughout the Roman Empire, the city actually dates back to the Bronze Age. It grew as a major shipping port throughout the industrial revolution and still upholds strong links to its rich maritime roots, housing HMNB Devonport, the largest operational naval base in Western Europe.
The bustling coastal town has many of the modern attractions that you would expect to find in a major city while retaining the character and charm that symbolises the coastal areas of Devon. One of the most popular areas of the city is The Hoe. Smeaton’s Tower is the most prominent landmark on the Hoe providing beautiful views over the city of Plymouth and out of Drake’s Island. Also on the Hoe you’ll find Tinside Pool, a unique 1930’s swimming pool that is open during the summer months with stunning views out to sea. .
The Barbican is also a popular area for visitors to Plymouth. One of the largest aquariums in the UK is found on the Barbican with the National Marine Aquarium housing over 4,000 marine animals. Plymouth Gin Distillery has been producing Plymouth Gin in the area since 1793 and the tour of the site is wonderful day out to learn about the techniques used in making gin. .
Shopping in Plymouth received a boost in 2006 with the opening of Drake Circus Shopping Centre. Since opening the centre has won retail awards such as ‘Shopping Location of the Year’ and compliments the large shops and independents that can be found on the High Street and surrounding areas..
A 9.3 mile stretch of the South West Coast Path is found in the city and is known as Plymouth’s Waterfront Walkway, where the path starts at Admiral’s Hard and finishes at Jennycliff. You’ll see parts of the city as well the stunning coastline as the path intertwines. If you want to go further afield you can explore parts of Cornwall to the west or head east on the South Devon coast on the path. It’s not only the South West Coast Path to explore while in Plymouth, with Dartmoor being in close proximity to the city, there are plenty more walks to keep you busy..
Smeaton’s Tower is the most prominent landmark on the Hoe providing beautiful views over the city
Plymouth Pavilions attract some of the biggest global acts to perform at the venue with global acts such as Kylie Minogue, Arctic Monkeys and Oasis having performed at the venue previously. The only permanent ice skating rink in the South West is also found at the Pavilions and is a favourite day out with a snow machine and disco lights creating a great atmosphere while you skate..
Celebrity chefs including Chris and James Tanner, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Gary Rhodes all have restaurants in the city, alongside the many great local eateries. Plymouth is a diverse city with something for everyone to enjoy while on holiday in South Devon.