things to do in plymouth

Last Updated on: 28th May 2024, 05:40 am

Welcome to my comprehensive travel guide to Plymouth, UK, where I’ll be sharing the best things to do in this vibrant city. Whether you’re a history buff, nature lover, or simply looking for some fun activities, Plymouth has something for everyone. From exploring historic landmarks to enjoying outdoor adventures, you’ll find plenty to keep you entertained. So, if you’re planning a trip to Plymouth and wondering what to do, look no further! Let’s dive in and discover the top attractions, activities, and hidden gems of this beautiful city.

If you’re looking for activities that will keep you entertained during your visit to Plymouth, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, I’ll be sharing the best things to do in Plymouth, from historic landmarks to outdoor adventures. So whether you’re traveling solo, with a group of friends or family, you’ll find plenty to keep you occupied.

Before we dive into the specific attractions and activities, let’s take a look at what makes Plymouth such a great destination. Nestled on the south coast of England, Plymouth is known for its rich history, stunning coastline, and vibrant culture. Whether you’re interested in exploring museums, soaking up the sun on the beach, or enjoying a night out on the town, Plymouth has something for everyone.

So, let’s get started and explore the best things to do in Plymouth. Are you ready? Let’s go!

Things to do in Plymouth

1. Explore the Historic Barbican

If you’re looking for things to see and do in Plymouth, one area you won’t want to miss is the Historic Barbican. I highly recommend taking a stroll along its charming cobbled streets, where you’ll find plenty of shops, cafes, and restaurants to explore. This area is steeped in history, so be sure to visit the Mayflower Steps, where the Pilgrims departed for the New World.

But there’s more to the Barbican than just its history. It’s also a great place to admire stunning views of the harbor. Take a boat tour or rent a kayak and see the city from a different perspective. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, why not try your hand at crabbing?

If you’re a fan of seafood, the Barbican is the perfect place to indulge in fresh local catch at one of its many seafood restaurants. Or, if you’re looking for something more casual, grab a pasty from one of the local bakeries.

The Old Plymouth Society Walking Tour

If you want to delve deeper into the history of the Barbican, I highly recommend taking The Old Plymouth Society Walking Tour. Led by knowledgeable guides, this tour will take you on a journey through the centuries, exploring the architecture, stories, and characters that have shaped this unique area of the city.

Shopping in the Barbican

If you’re looking for unique gifts or souvenirs, the Barbican’s independent shops will not disappoint. From vintage clothing to handmade crafts, there’s something for everyone. Don’t miss The House That Jack Built, a shop filled with quirky gifts and home decor.

The Barbican Theatre

If you’re looking for evening entertainment, the Barbican Theatre offers a wide range of productions, from drama to comedy. Check their schedule and book tickets in advance to avoid disappointment.

2. Discover the Royal Citadel

One of the fascinating places to visit in Plymouth is the Royal Citadel, a 17th-century fortress steeped in history. As you take a guided tour, explore the ramparts and historic buildings, while enjoying panoramic views of the beautiful city and the sea.

If you’re a history enthusiast, then this attraction is a must-visit. The Royal Citadel showcases Plymouth’s rich military past and provides a unique insight into the city’s heritage. Step back in time and discover the secrets of the fortress with a knowledgeable guide.

Details Information
Address Royal Parade, Plymouth PL1 2PD, United Kingdom
Opening Times Monday to Sunday: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Admission Fees Adult: £7.00
Children (5-17 years): £4.20
Family (2 adults + 2 children): £18.20
Contact Phone: +44 1752 203002

fun things to do in Plymouth

The picturesque views from the Citadel make it a popular spot for photography enthusiasts. Capture stunning shots of the sea, city and surroundings that are sure to impress. Furthermore, it’s an ideal location for picnics and relaxing with friends and family.

Whether you’re a military history buff or simply looking for fun things to see and do in Plymouth, a visit to Royal Citadel is a must.

3. Visit the National Marine Aquarium

If you’re looking for a unique and educational experience in Plymouth, the National Marine Aquarium must be on your list of things to see and do in Plymouth for young adults. You’ll discover a whole world of marine life and learn more about the importance of sea conservation.

The aquarium boasts a diverse range of species ranging from vibrant tropical fish to majestic sharks that will leave you in awe. You can indulge in interactive exhibits and dive shows, making this the perfect attraction for both adults and children alike.

“The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.” – Jacques Yves Cousteau

4. Explore the Plymouth Hoe

The Plymouth Hoe is a must-visit destination that offers spectacular views of the Plymouth Sound. This vast expanse of green space is perfect for leisurely walks or picnics with friends and family.

During your visit, be sure to check out the iconic Smeaton’s Tower, a historic lighthouse that offers panoramic views from the top. The climb to the top is definitely worth the effort and provides the perfect opportunity to take stunning photos.

If you’re looking for things to do for free in Plymouth, the Plymouth Hoe is a great option. Take in stunning views of the sea, watch the ferries coming and going, or relax in one of the many green spaces. It’s a peaceful spot that offers a unique perspective of the city.

If you want to make the most of your time in Plymouth and are looking for fun things to do, consider taking a guided tour of the area to learn about its rich heritage and culture. Alternatively, if you’re looking for an exciting experience, why not try a jet ski safari and witness Plymouth’s beauty from a unique perspective?

Plymouth Sound

5. Step into History at the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery

If you’re interested in history and culture, one of the top things to see and do in Plymouth is to visit the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery. This fascinating museum is home to a vast collection of artifacts and artworks that showcase the city’s rich heritage.

Explore the diverse exhibits, from the prehistoric era to the present day, including archaeological finds, local art, and fascinating stories from Plymouth’s past. Admire the works of renowned artists such as Joshua Reynolds and Luke Fildes, and marvel at the displays of ancient Egyptian artifacts.

One of the highlights of the museum is the “Crown and Glory” exhibition, which features a stunning collection of historic headwear, including crowns, helmets, and hats. It’s a great place to learn about the city’s culture and heritage, and there’s always something new to discover.

The Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery: At a Glance

Location Drake Circus, Plymouth PL4 8AJ
Opening Hours Tuesday-Saturday: 10:00am-5:00pm
Sunday: 12:00pm-4:00pm
Closed on Mondays
Admission Free entry

With free entry, the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery is a great place to spend an afternoon exploring the city’s history and culture. Whether you’re a local or a tourist visiting for the first time, it’s definitely worth a visit.

6. Wander Through the Plymouth Gin Distillery

If you’re a gin lover, this is the perfect place for you! The Plymouth Gin Distillery offers guided tours where you can learn about the fascinating distillation process and the history behind this famous gin. You can also taste a range of different varieties and find your favorite. Don’t forget to pick up a bottle as a souvenir to enjoy later, or perhaps as a gift for a friend.

The distillery is open to visitors all year round and is a fun thing to do in Plymouth. It’s also one of the things to do for free in Plymouth, as there’s no admission fee to explore the distillery. However, there may be a charge for the guided tour, so check beforehand.

Plymouth Gin Distillery

“The tour was really informative and interesting, and the gin was delicious! I would highly recommend a visit to the Plymouth Gin Distillery.”

7. Enjoy Outdoor Activities at Mount Edgcumbe Country Park

If you’re searching for a peaceful retreat from the city, then you need to visit the Mount Edgcumbe Country Park. The park’s acres of stunning gardens, coastal walks, and woodland trails are ideal for unwinding. You could pack a picnic with your friends or family members, or explore the park’s natural beauty by foot. If you enjoy biking, you could bring your bike and cycle along the park’s paths. The park is a beautiful location to relax and connect with nature.

Mount Edgcumbe Country Park is one of the best things to do for free in Plymouth. With no admission fee, you can enjoy all that the park has to offer without breaking the bank. It’s also a fun thing to do in Plymouth, as there are so many activities to do and things to see.

While exploring the park, you can admire the stunning trees and flowers on display at the numerous gardens in the park. There is a walled garden, as well as rose gardens, Italian gardens, and more.

Not only is the park a beautiful place to unwind, but it’s also a site of historical significance. You can visit the Mount Edgecumbe House, which is an 18th-century mansion. It has been turned into a museum that showcases the history of the house and the region as a whole.

In conclusion, Mount Edgcumbe Country Park is a must-visit location for anyone visiting Plymouth. Between the stunning gardens, scenic coastal walks, and historical mansion, there is something for everyone here. It’s a fun thing to do in Plymouth, a great place to unwind and connect with nature and is one of the best things to do for free in Plymouth.

8. Experience the Thrills of a Jet Ski Safari

If you’re looking for an adventure and crave an adrenaline rush, then a jet ski safari is the perfect activity for you. Experience the beauty of Plymouth’s coastline and explore hidden gems from a unique perspective.

No previous experience is required, as skilled instructors will guide you through the jet ski safari and ensure your safety throughout the thrilling adventure.

Feel the wind rushing through your hair as you navigate through waves and witness Plymouth’s stunning natural beauty. This is an activity that is perfect for young adults looking for fun things to do in Plymouth.

jet ski safari

Why Choose Jet Ski Safari?

  • Experience Plymouth’s coastline like never before
  • No previous experience required
  • Skilled instructors ensure your safety
  • The perfect activity for adventure-seekers and young adults

9. Unwind at the Hidden Gems of Plymouth

After exploring the top attractions in Plymouth, it’s time to discover the hidden gems that the city has to offer. These lesser-known spots are perfect for those seeking something off the beaten path and are a great way to unwind and relax.

Tinside Lido

If you’re looking for a refreshing dip on a hot day, head to Tinside Lido, an iconic outdoor saltwater pool located in the heart of Plymouth. This Art Deco gem offers stunning views of the sea and is a great spot to soak up the sun.

Plymbridge Woods

For nature lovers, a visit to Plymbridge Woods is a must. This tranquil oasis is home to a variety of wildlife and offers scenic walking and cycling trails. Pack a picnic and enjoy a peaceful day surrounded by the beauty of nature.

“Plymbridge Woods is a hidden gem in Plymouth. It’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy some peaceful time in nature.”

– Local Plymouth resident

Barbican Waterfront

Take a stroll along the Barbican Waterfront and discover quaint cafes, restaurants, and shops. This picturesque area is full of charm and character and offers stunning views of Plymouth Sound. It’s the perfect place to relax and unwind while immersing yourself in Plymouth’s maritime history.

Name Description Location
The Ship Inn A cozy pub with a great selection of drinks and delicious food. 3 St. Andrew’s St, Plymouth
The House That Jack Built An independent gift shop selling handmade and unique gifts. 33 Southside St, Plymouth
Plymouth Gin Distillery A historic distillery offering tours and tastings of Plymouth Gin. 60 Southside St, Plymouth

These hidden gems offer a chance to escape the crowds and enjoy the beauty of Plymouth. So, pack your bags and get ready to discover the city’s lesser-known treasures.


In conclusion, there are a plethora of things to do in Plymouth, making it a top destination for tourists. From exploring the historic Barbican to enjoying outdoor activities at Mount Edgcumbe Country Park, there is something for everyone in this vibrant city. Don’t miss out on discovering the hidden gems of Plymouth, such as the Tinside Lido and Plymbridge Woods.

So, what are you waiting for? Plan your trip to Plymouth today and experience its rich history, natural beauty, and thrilling adventures. You won’t regret it!


What are some fun things to do in Plymouth?

There are plenty of fun activities to enjoy in Plymouth. You can visit the National Marine Aquarium, explore the Plymouth Hoe, take a jet ski safari, or unwind at the hidden gems like Tinside Lido and Plymbridge Woods.

What are some of the top attractions in Plymouth?

Some top attractions in Plymouth include the Historic Barbican, the Royal Citadel, the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery, and the Plymouth Gin Distillery.

Are there any free things to do in Plymouth?

Yes, there are several free things to do in Plymouth. You can take a leisurely walk along the Plymouth Hoe, explore Mount Edgcumbe Country Park, or visit the Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery.

What is there to do in Plymouth for young adults?

Young adults can enjoy activities like visiting the National Marine Aquarium, exploring the Plymouth Hoe, taking a jet ski safari, or immersing themselves in the vibrant nightlife of the city.

What are some hidden gems in Plymouth?

Some hidden gems in Plymouth include the atmospheric Tinside Lido and the tranquil Plymbridge Woods, perfect for nature lovers seeking a peaceful retreat.