Portsmouth Historic Dockyard Visitor Frequently Asked Questions
Find our visitor FAQs here for Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. We're home to 12 historic ships, museums and attractions including the Mary Rose, HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the National Museum of the Royal Navy. Since August 2020 its visitor operations have been managed by the National Museum of the Royal Navy alongside the Mary Rose Trust.
This page provides answers to frequently asked questions in related to the new operational arrangement and the newly introduced ticketing offer. It also provides information for visitors affected by the COVID-19 closure and/or unsure about steps that have been taken to reopen the site to the public.
These FAQs were last updated on 13 October 2021.
Portsmouth Historic Dockyard
We are happy to confirm that Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and all the attractions are open with the exception of Action Stations. Action Stations is currently under review, keep an eye on our social media channels for the latest updates.
Because the Historic Dockyard is part of a working naval base, you are not able to leave luggage anywhere on site. Unattended items may be confiscated or destroyed by the MOD police.
Due to Ministry of Defence bylaws no animals, except for assistance dogs, are permitted onto the Naval Base, including the Historic Dockyard.
Purchasing a new ticket
As part of the collaboration between the National Museum of the Royal Navy and the Mary Rose Museum, we offer a range of tickets for Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.
The tickets we have are:
One Attraction Day Ticket
This is valid on one attraction and only for the day of the visit.
The Three Attraction Explorer ticket*
This is valid on three attractions of your choice and will be valid for 12 months from the first scan. Your ticket will be activated once you have scanned in at your first chosen attraction and will remember the two others you visit.
*Please note: The Three Attraction Explorer ticket will only be valid on the attractions you choose on your first visit. This means on subsequent visits you will only be able to see the same three attractions. This ticket does not include Harbour Tour.
The Ultimate Explorer ticket
This is valid on all of the attractions (including the Harbour Tours and the Mary Rose) at the Portsmouth and Gosport sites and can be reused as many times as you like for 12 months. The ticket is not activated until it is scanned on your first visit.
The Family Explorer 1 ticket
This is valid on all attractions at the Portsmouth and Gosport sites and includes one adult and up to three children. It is valid for 12 months and is not activated until it is scanned on your first visit.
The Family Explorer 2 ticket
This is valid on all attractions at the Portsmouth and Gosport sites and includes two adults and up to three children. It is valid for 12 months and is not activated until it is scanned on your first visit.
| One Attraction
| Three Attraction
| Family Explorer 1
(1 Adult and up to 3 Children)
|Family Explorer 2
(2 Adults and up to 3 Children)
*£5 online discount section – There is a £5 discount for all valid tickets pre-booked online.
Yes. Admission is free for children under 3.
We do not offer a formal student concession but we do run special offers for students. A student ID will be required to take advantage of this
A £5 discount automatically applied to tickets bought online, except for the 1 attraction day ticket. Tickets purchase at the visitor centre will not benefit from this discount
We are no longer selling the Portsmouth Pass as we discuss the structure of the offer with our neighbours.
The window for requesting extensions has now closed.
Booking a Visit
We strongly encourage all our visitors to pre-book to help us manage the volume of visitors on arrival to our site.
We are offering visitors the opportunity to choose a day that they would like to visits as well as a specific half an hour window when they would like to arrive.
We do offer limited tickets that are available for purchase on the gates, spaces are available on a first come first-served basis.
Time slots are allocated in half an hour sections, however, we understand that sometimes you may be running late! Your time slot will allow you half an hour to arrive and enter the Dockyard so a 10 am till 10.30am slot means you can arrive between 10 am and 10.30 am
If you do miss your time slot, we will ask you to wait and will do our best to fit you into the next available slot. The staff at our visitor centre will be on hand to help should this be the case.
You will have from the time of your entry, to the time the Dockyard closes to explore the Dockyard and the Attractions.
Yes. ALL visitors are required to book a timeslot before they visit the site, including those going to the Royal Navy Submarine Museum or Explosion, the Museum of Naval Firepower, in Gosport. This is essential in enabling us to manage our volume of visitors to those sites.
I cannot visit as planned, can I change or cancel my booking timeslot to a new one?
Yes, if you are unable to make your slot we actively encourage you to rebook using your Returner ID on the booking portal. However, if you have 1 attraction day ticket, please contact our Customer Relations team on email@example.com and they will be happy to rebook your visit for you
Unfortunately, we are unable to replace any lost tickets as per our terms and conditions, found on our website and printed on our tickets.
We are very sorry for any disappointment caused. If you want to revisit we can recommend the Ultimate Explorer ticket, now including access to the Mary Rose Museum.
If this is of interest to you, we have included the link here: https://www.historicdockyard.co.uk/tickets-and-offers
It is with regret that our terms and conditions do outline a strict no refund policy and we ask you to accept this specific term before you submit your payment.
However, if you have purchased an Ultimate Explorer or Three Attraction ticket they will remain on the system so you will be able to visit at a later date and enjoy unlimited access for 12 months after that date. If you have 1 attraction day ticket, please contact our Customer Relations team on firstname.lastname@example.org and they will be happy to rebook your visit for you.
I’ve booked my ticket and/or my slot for my visit, what do I need to bring with me?
Once you have booked your ticket and/or your time slot for visiting, you will be sent TWO confirmation emails.
This your ticket confirmation. This will confirm that your ticket had been secured and payment has been processed.
This email will have your official ticket attached to it – You need to bring this every time you visit the Dockyard and scan it on entry into our attractions.
The email will also confirm the timeslot you booked. You will get a new timeslot confirmation email every time you book a return visit to the dockyard or at our Gosport sites.
The second email will be your Returner ID, which is a 16 digit number...not to be confused with the barcode on your ticket!
You will need to keep this email as you will need your returner ID number to book each visit, with your official ticket to be scan into our attractions.
Upon purchasing your tickets you will receive a confirmation email with your tickets attached. Another email will follow with your returner ID which allows you access to the returner portal to book timeslots for future visits.
Please keep your returner ID as you will need it to book each visit. You will also need your original tickets to scan into our attractions.
The returner ID is generated for the ticket purchaser and not for each individual ticket. Once issued, the ID grants access to the book your time slot portal where you will need to book return slots for the number of individuals planning on visiting.
Please bring your original tickets when you visit as they will need to be scanned to enter the Dockyard.
Gift Aid is reclaimed by the charity from HMRC from the tax you pay for the current tax year. Your address is needed to identify you as a current UK taxpayer. In order to Gift Aid your donation you must select one of the Gift Aid ticket options below.
Gift Aid allows us to reclaim 25p tax for every £1 spent. As a charity, every penny counts. Your kind donation to support the work of National Museum of The Royal Navy, Mary Rose Trust and Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust is subject to HMRC terms and conditions and is therefore not eligible for a refund. Whether it's to conserve world famous ships or bring historical artefacts to the public, selecting the Gift Aid tickets helps us to continue this valuable work.
Portsmouth Historic Dockyard is operated by the National Museum of the Royal Navy and Mary Rose Trust, both of whom are education and heritage conservation charities. So, if you are a UK tax payer and opt-in to Gift Aid, we can claim back 25% of the total cost of your eligible tickets from HMRC. This makes a huge difference to us and helps support all of our charitable work.
Tickets that are eligible for Gift Aid are those with 12 month redemption periods. This includes:
- The Three Attraction Explorer ticket
- The Ultimate Explorer ticket
- The Family Explorer 1 ticket
- The Family Explorer 2 ticket
It is with regret that our terms and conditions do outline a strict no refund policy and we ask you to accept this specific term before you submit your payment. A ticket that has had Gift Aid applied to it is converted to a donation to enable us to recover the tax relief. The legislation from HMRC which surrounds fundraising prevents us from refunding donations, including Gift Aid tickets.
PHD offers a range of discounts to certain groups. Please see below for who is eligible for any discounts and T&C’s applicable.
MOD 90 Cardholders
MOD 90 cardholders qualify for free entry, and up to 4 guests receive 25% off our Ultimate Explorer tickets. This offer can be redeemed in our Visitor Centre, by showing a valid MOD 90 card. Cannot be purchased online or used in conjunction with any other offer.
Blue Light Cardholders
Blue Light cardholders can receive a 30% discount on an Ultimate Explorer Family ticket, or for up to 4 individual Ultimate Explorer tickets (e.g: 1 adult, 1 senior, 2 children). This offer is a walk up offer and can be redeemed in the Visitor Centre by showing your Blue Light card.
Defence Discount Service
Defence Discount Service cardholders can receive a 30% discount on an Ultimate Explorer Family ticket, or for up to 4 individual Ultimate Explorer tickets (e.g: 1 adult, 1 senior, 2 children). This offer is a walk up offer and can be redeemed in the Visitor Centre by showing your Defence Discount card.
Veterans qualify for a £20 Ultimate Explorer ticket. This can be purchased in the Visitor Centre. There are many different ways you can show your veteran status and purchase this ticket. We will accept the following: Veterans card, Veterans rail card, discharge papers. If you are wearing a veterans pin badge we will also accept this.
Children with a Blue Peter badge are entitled to free entry, alongside purchase of a walk up rate (full price) Ultimate Explorer ticket. The ticket does not need to be purchased at the same time, but you must be able to show that you have previously bought a full price Ultimate Explorer Ticket. If you have purchased your ticket online, the £5 upgrade must be paid on the day of your visit. A child can visit with different parents/carers as long as they have a valid full price Ultimate Explorer ticket. We simply issue a free child day ticket from our Visitor Centre in any of these scenarios.
Art Fund/National Art Pass
Members/cardholders are entitled to a 50% discount off our Ultimate Explorer tickets. The discount will apply to tickets that correspond with your membership. So single memberships will get 50% off and adult or senior Ultimate Explorer ticket, joint memberships will get 50% off 2 adult/senior Ultimate Explorer tickets, and family memberships are entitled to 50% off a family Ultimate Explorer ticket. This offer is a walk up offer only. Art passes must be shown at time of purchase and tickets are available from the Visitor Centre on the day of your visit.
Portsmouth Leisure Card
Leisure card holders are entitled to 50% off a family Ultimate Explorer ticket, or 50% off 4 individual Ultimate Explorer tickets (adult, senior or child). This offer is available as a walk up offer only. Please show your purchase Leisure card at the Visitor Centre when you buy your tickets.
It is important to us to get feedback from Portsmouth Historic Dockyard visitors to help us understand what improvements we can make and to know what is going well.
After your visit to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, we will send you a post-visit survey to capture some of your thoughts about your visit and in particular how you felt about our safety measures. We would be grateful if you are able to complete this as it provides valuable insights which help us to plan for future visitors.
You can also leave a review on our Trip Advisor page.