Car hire in Southampton
Hiring a car in Southampton
Southampton in England is the largest city in the county of Hampshire.
By hiring a car, you're able to travel around the city and the surrounding areas and really enjoy everything that you want to.
The M27 is the main road that runs around the city, starting nearby in the New Forest and heading down to Portsmouth. The M3 also begins in Southampton and goes up to Kingston, which sits on the outskirts of London.
What you need to know
Being such a large city, you can find a number of car hire providers in Southampton. To find the best deal, you can search on our website.
Top of the range suppliers service Southampton, including Hertz, Europcar and Thrifty. You'll find a wide range of vehicles to suit your needs, and you can also be reassured by the 24/7 support, free cancellation and free amendments if your circumstances change.
Where to pick up your car
Depending on how you plan to travel to Southampton, you can either pick up your hire car at the airport or in the city centre.
At the airport, you'll find the car hire desks either in the arrivals hall or you can take a free shuttle bus to the office, which is just a short ride away.
Alternatively, all of the providers in the city centre are based centrally and not too far from the train station, so you can either enjoy the short walk or jump in a taxi.
“The pick-up was easy, it took 5 minutes from arriving at the desk to driving out the car, and the return took even less time. Booking with Holiday Autos was easy and I received the car that I had asked for, just perfect!”
Where to go
Southampton is a very large city, so there's no shortage of things to see and do. If you're a fan of theatre then check out one of the shows on offer at the Mayflower or Nuffield. There's also a number of museums, and football fans can catch a game at St, Mary's, the home of Southampton FC, or take a tour of the stadium.
You'll also find a number of stunning parks around the city, one of the most popular being Riverside Park, which is perfect for a stroll, to relax with a picnic or enjoy a game of rounders with your family and friends.
To take in the history of the area, why not walk around the Southampton town walls? A guided tour will teach you the history of the area, as well as show you the top spots to see.
Just 15 minutes from Southampton along the A33 is the New Forest, one of the largest remaining unenclosed forests in the south of England. This is an extremely popular area for visitors, with a number of award-winning gardens, museums and leisure and wildlife parks, as well as great accommodation options if you're looking to stay and explore for a few days.
Alternatively, 20 minutes north of Southampton is Winchester, a beautiful city that to this day retains its historic roots. It's popular for its markets, particularly the monthly farmer's market, as well as the stunning architecture of Winchester Cathedral and Wolvesey Castle. Explore the medieval cobbled streets of this city and you'll be sure to find some hidden gems to enjoy.
Having a hire car gives you the freedom to explore even more of England and see what it truly has to offer.
Why not drive just under two hours north and go and explore the sights of London? As England's capital city, you can find anything that you could dream of here. Explore the quirky markets in the east end of the city, or visit the main tourists attractions such as the London Eye, Buckingham Palace and Covent Garden in the centre of the city.
Alternatively, if you're looking for something a bit quieter, then you can head an hour and a half west to the seaside town of Weymouth. Considered one of England's most beautiful seaside resorts, you can relax on the beach on a sunny day, or enjoy a day of fun at the Sea Life Centre and Adventure Park.
Top attractions to visit in Southampton
By hiring a car, you have the chance to see anything and everything during your visit to Southampton.
Eating and drinking
With a number of popular bars, themed pubs, coffee houses and fine dining restaurants, Southampton has something to offer to everyone when it comes to food and drink.
You can choose from almost any cuisine that you imagine, whether you're looking to just grab a quick bite or to treat yourself to a Michelin-starred dining experience.
There's also a great variety of places to grab a drink, from a pint of real ale in a stunning pub garden to the much more lively bars and clubs in the city.
Things to do
You'll never be short of finding something to do in Southampton. It's known for its vibrant shopping scene, offering a range of high street brands to small independent stores to fill your day with retail therapy.
A trip to the city also wouldn't be complete without visiting one of the many museums and galleries that it's home to, including the Solent Sky Museum, SeaCity Museum and Southampton City Art Gallery.
Also, if you're keen on Maritime history, then you should definitely head to the SS Shieldhall to take a look around. You can take a look around the ship and speak to the staff who share with the the history of this grand vessel.
Even though it's a big city, Southampton still boasts a number of fantastic destinations for sightseeing that you won't want to miss. Visit the Hythe Ferry, which includes a ride on the oldest electric railway in England and boasts stunning views.
You should also head to Tudor House and Garden, which has been beautifully restored to welcome visitors. It also includes a museum, where you can learn the history of the area dating back to the Tudor era.
If you want to enjoy the great outdoors, then visit the Common for a stunning walk, or Manor Farm Country Park, which is home to an array of farm animals, as well as offering a number of routes where you can really immerse yourself in the nature of the area.
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