The great Warrior is an icon today as much as it was one hundred and fifty years ago during the Age of Steam. The largest and fastest of all Royal Navy ships, HMS Warrior’s fame worldwide made her the jewel in the crown - an icon that attracted thousands of visitors during the Tour of Britain. Now, Warrior has undergone a re-interpretation, reflecting what she was like in 1863 by opening up new areas of the ship and bringing stories from the period to life.


What makes HMS Warrior so special?

HMS Warrior 1860, Britain’s first iron-hulled, armoured battleship and the newest member of The National Museum of the Royal Navy's fleet. Launched in 1860, at a time of empire and Britain’s dominance in trade and industry, HMS Warrior 1860 was the pride of Queen Victoria’s fleet.

Travel back in time to the Tour of Britain 

From the jetty to the boiler room, Warrior has been reimagined as it was in 1863. The Tour of Britain opened Warrior to the general public, giving access like never before. The event was a grand celebration of Britain’s ingenuity during a time of transition from wood to iron-hulled ships. Pick up your leaflet upon entry to follow the new layout when you arrive.

Immerse yourself in Victorian ingenuity

As soon as you step on-board, the story of the great event will unfold before you. New spaces including the captain’s cabin and galley have been reinterpreted to reflect how it was 156-years ago. Authentic set dressing you can touch transports you to another time when the grandeur of Queen Victoria’s favourite ship ruled the waves. 

Meet characters from the past

With every room you discover and every object you hold, you’ll soon immerse yourself in a time gone by. Whether you meet a gunner getting ready for battle or a Victorian tourist who’s wowed by the ship’s beauty, history is brought to life like never before. Ask questions, hear their stories and learn the mysteries behind this iron-hulled legend.

Our ‘Dockyard Alive’ team will be bringing Victorian England to Warrior as part of the reimagining. Her story is told through characters that lived, breathed and worked during the Tour of Britain. For some of the crew, it will be the first time they speak with the generous tax payers who funded their ship, for others it will be an opportunity to share a story or teach you a thing or two about life on-board.


Want to enjoy sunsets over the camber or wanting to see what's alongside Portsmouth Naval Base? Tune into Webcam Wednesdays on the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard Facebook page, where we go live all day every Wednesday in glorious HD.

Top Questions

What is the Round-Britain tour?

In 1863, Warrior undertook a publicity tour of Great Britain, showcasing the ingenuity and technology behind the ship. At a time of change for naval engineering, where ships were beginning to move away from wooden to iron-hulled, it was a chance to show tax payers how their money was being spent. As soon as you walk towards Warrior, you’ll start to see references to the ‘Tour of Britain.’ Our curatorial team have researched every little detail, from the marketing used to advertise the event to introducing celebratory garlands along the jetty. Inside the ship, new areas are more accessible, artefacts have been added and actors placed to bring the story of the tour to life.


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