‘Plymouth Port of Departure’ – Walk




The Tour / Experience:

Plymouth, in Devon is inextricably linked with the sea; a port from where, for centuries, emigrants have departed and voyages have been made by explorers such as Sir William Hawkins, Sir Francis Drake, and Captain James Cook. In C16th, before the Pilgrim Fathers left on the Mayflower to establish a pioneer settlement in Massachusetts, Sir Walter Raleigh shipped colonists from Sutton harbour to the ‘New World’ and established a settlement on Roanoke Island in what is now North Carolina.

During the C18th the only government emigration depot in country with room for over 1000 people waiting to board ship was located in Plymouth. Emigration was big business!

Transportation of criminals to Australia, and promise of free passage to Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the Cape of Good Hope, for those seeking a new future, saw over 430,000 people leave Plymouth as emigrants during the C19th and early C20th.

Join your Blue Badge Guide on a walking tour of Plymouth Hoe for breathtaking views of Plymouth Sound and West Hoe Pier where ‘Look II’, Anthony Gormley’s sculpture expresses tensions between whether to leave or stay, desire to make roots, search for adventure and a free life.

We stroll along the spacious promenade where stories of exploration and heroism are revealed as we pass Sir Francis Drake’s statue, the Armada Memorial, Smeaton’s Tower, many other monuments and intriguing features.

Around Sutton Harbour on Plymouth’s Barbican, we find cobbled streets, lined with cosy cafes, buzzing pubs, eclectic shops and galleries, an historic Elizabethan garden and buildings, the colourful fishing harbour, Mayflower Steps and host of memorials to many who sailed from here on unique voyages.

At the end of our walk a cream tea – Devon style – can be arranged at extra cost or you may wish to grab a local ice cream or relax dining on fresh fish in a harbourside café or restaurant.


The Highlights: 

  • A 2 ½ hour guided walk led by a Blue Badge Guide
  • Walk along Plymouth Hoe with outstanding views of Plymouth Sound.
  • Visit to Plymouth’s historic Barbican and Sutton Harbour.
  • Opportunity to walk under, and photograph, the Mayflower Steps.
  • Use of personal radio receiver connected to Tour Guide wireless audio transmission system for improved audibility and social distancing on walk.
  • Optional Cream Tea at extra cost
  • Accompanied by Blue Badge Guide with Covid safe measures in place.


Tour Details: 

Start & End Location: Welcome sign on Plymouth Hoe near Elliott Terrace OS GR SX475539


Contact Details: 

Email:  julia@atasteofenglandtours.com

Tour gallery

About the guide

Name: Julia Morris

Qualifications: Southern England

Languages: English