Southampton’s May Half Term Highlights

From a waterfront festival to hands-on history with art, craft and family-friendly walking tours too, Southampton’s May line-up makes the most of the half term and bank holiday happenings

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Highlights from include:

Free Southampton Waterfront Festival

Kickstarting the May half term, families can enjoy a free festival at Southampton’s Mayflower Park on 27 May. Live music, games, football and pop-up food stalls as well as a designated picnic space will be all part of the Waterfront Fun Day organised by local community groups.

For more information visit

WW2 Training, Blitz Walking Tour and Toys Through Time events at Southampton’s Tudor House & Gardens

As well as exploring the history and artefacts housed within the walls of Southampton’s 800-year-old-old Tudor House & Gardens, this half term, the venue will stage a series of hand-on activities and experiences. On Tuesday 30th May children will be able to handle toys from the past as well as make their own designs at the 90-minute Toys Through Time workshops (tickets £8; sessions 10.30 and 1pm). On 31st May and 1st June, there will be the chance to step back in time to WW2 at several 30-minute Civil Defence Training Experience workshops held throughout the day (tickets £4; sessions at 10.30, 11.30, 1pm and 2pm). During World War Two, Southampton was a major target for German bombs, and the people of the city rallied round and worked together to keep each other safe. Led by an Air Raid Precautions Warden, children will be trained in the skills needed, like the correct way to put out an incendiary bomb and bandaging the wounded! The experience will also include a trip down to Tudor House’s Air Raid Shelter.

Also on 1st June and in keeping with the WW2 theme, a 90-minute Southampton Blitz family focused walking tour explores the wartime histories of the city’s old town (tickets £7; session at 11am and 2pm).

For more information about the Tudor House and Gardens

Chalk and charcoals, telling stories through art and getting creative with junk at Southampton City Art Gallery

After checking out one of the finest art collections in the south of England (for free) families heading to Southampton City Art Gallery during half term can join a number of art-related workshops. On 31st May, there’s two, 120-minute creative Charcoals and Chalks workshops (tickets £8; sessions at 10.30am and 1pm) while on 1st June is Telling Tales: stories, symbols and wire figures, a two-hour workshop that explores art through story telling (tickets £8; sessions at 10.30am and 1pm). Finally on 2nd June, families can get creative and explore the huge potential of junk at the Ten Things workshop. From simple activities to complex design and three-dimensional thinking, there are three 90-minute hands-on sessions (tickets £6; sessions at 10:30am, 12.30pm and 2.30pm).

Entry to the gallery is free.

From Egyptians and maritime history to life aboard the Titanic at the Seacity Museum

Alongside learning about Southampton’s maritime connections, including its fascinating interactive Titanic exhibition, the SeaCity Museum is hosting a Mummy Mayhem day on 2nd June. This fun-filled history session explores the wonderful world of the Ancient Egyptians, with the chance for children to mummify an orange using ancient techniques (tickets £8; sessions at 10.30am and 1pm).

Entry to the museum is £10 for adults, £7.50 children and a family ticket is £31 (2+3). The museum also has a free to download self-guided Titanic walk which retraces the city’s connections to the doomed vessel.


Room2: Stylish self-catering hometel, is ideally located beside quiet and leafy Queens Park yet close to the marina and buzzy Oxford street – lined with restaurants and bars. Stylishly decorated, each room has an en suite shower room, fully equipped kitchenette, dishwasher, dining table, sofa, TV plus onsite laundry, bar and café area. Stays are for 24 hours with check in and check out at 2pm. Sleeping four, the M Loft is an ideal family space with prices from £185.00 per night over half term.

Accor Ibis: The appropriately named Ibis Southampton Centre is perfectly located for exploring the maritime city. Bright and airy this economy hotel is ideal for families on a budget. For half term there’s a special family offer of 50% off a second room with a double and twin room stay costing £101.26 based on a family of four sharing across the two rooms

For news and inspiration about what’s on and what to do in the city

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