Daily Expedition Reports
Portsmouth & Keyhaven

Ella Potts, Naturalist, May 2019

  • Daily Expedition Reports
  • 09 May 2019

Portsmouth & Keyhaven

  • Aboard the National Geographic Explorer
  • British & Irish Isles
National Geographic Explorer arrived in Portsmouth in the early morning. The first group of guests left for Titchfield Haven Nature Reserve for a bird-watching walk. It was a wonderful experience to stroll surrounded by many songbirds. We had fantastic views of avocets, cuckoos, and Mediterranean gulls, among others. We were surprised to discover that not only wildlife makes Titchfield an interesting place but also the presence of archaeological remains indicating human activity in the area for thousands of years. The rest of us spent the morning in the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, home of iconic British Navy ships. We visited the HMS Victory, Lord Nelson’s flagship, a wonderful example of a first-rate ship of the line of the Royal Navy. We also explored the Mary Rose museum, home of the remains of the Mary Rose and its extraordinary collection of Tudor artifacts. This exhibition is of exceptional quality and is recognized worldwide as a state-of-the-art museum for maritime archaeology. After returning to the Explorer, we sailed across the Solent heading toward Hurst Castle and Keyhaven, where we disembarked by Zodiacs. Some of us opted to walk around the coastal path of Keyhaven while others visited Hurst Castle, a fortress that operated for four centuries.

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Ancient Isles: England, Ireland, and Scotland