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Things to do in Southampton: Explore Southampton with Vita Student

Chloe Sweet
24.12.23 – 03 Mins Read
A crowd facing a DJ set.

Vita Student Southampton sits in the heart of the city.

Vita has sussed out the hot spots, tried and tested the food and drink and have the recommendations ready for you. Come and explore your new home with our city guide videos, curated exclusively for you to feel like a local in no time.

Nestled along the shores of the Solent, Southampton boasts a rich maritime heritage, stunning green spaces, and a dynamic cultural scene. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or a nature lover, Southampton has something for everyone. In this blog, we will guide you through an exploration of the best things to do in this charming city, from iconic historical sites to hidden gems and exciting events that make Southampton an exciting student destination.


There are a huge number of museums and galleries in Southampton which will keep you busy for hours. One of our favourites is the SeaCity Museum where you can find an interactive model of the Titanic which departed from the very port you can still visit in the city today. If maritime history isn’t your thing, head to the Southampton City Art gallery for a glance at modern British art free of charge. Want to see some vintage aircraft? The Solent Sky Museum is home to an iconic Spitfire that’s not to be missed. If you’re exploring the city on foot, head to the Tudor House & Gardens, one of the highest rated things to see in the city and housing over 800 years of history.


Fancy hitting the shops after exploring the culture of the museums Southampton has to offer? The WestQuay shopping centre is home to over 100 high street shops spread over 3 floors. Surrounded by food and drink places, not to mention outside pop ups throughout the year such as Christmas markets and a festive ice rink, as well as Octoberfest tents to name a few – you’ll be spoilt for choice. We love heading for pizza at Franco Manca and highly recommend you pay them a visit!

Looking for sustainable shopping options in Southampton? Head over to Beatnik Emporium on Above Bar Street where you can find pre-loved vintage clothing and accessories. You’ll also find a handful of well-known charity shops dotted around the city centre for those last-minute bargains.

The Port and Ocean Village.

The marina is definitely a must see in Southampton and isn’t limited to just that. With Ocean Village shops, a cinema and even bars and restaurants on the water’s edge, you’ll feel like you’re on a holiday stop off as the cruise ships roll in. Of course, you can also hop on a boat tour yourself and see the sites from the water, in a city known for its port, it would be rude not to.

In need of a well-deserved spa day? The offers five-star luxury and is situated on the edge of Ocean Village so the views and vibes are to die for.

Food and Drink.

Southampton is full of independent restaurants as well as big chains so it’s easy to feel overwhelmed! One of our favourites that we recommend if you’re in the mood for a LOT of food is 7 Bone Burger Company, down the road from our Portswood House student accommodation One of the best burgers we’ve had and there is a lot to choose from. Wanting something a bit different then head to Mango Thai where you can indulge in Thai tapas style cuisine. There is one by our residence but also a few dotted around the city. If you’re in the mood for cocktails and bottomless brunch we suggest you try Turtle Bay. Known for their happy hour cocktails, it’s somewhere you can go for a chilled evening but also where you can spend the night with good music and events.

Student Nightlife in Southampton

As the sun sets, the city comes alive with a wide range of entertainment options catering to every taste. The O2 Guildhall Hall is always hosting big artists and bands in their small but mighty venue every night of the week. The bustling Bedford Place and Oxford Street areas are vibrant hubs, hosting an array of pubs, bars, and clubs where you can savour craft beers, signature cocktails, and live music. For those looking for an LGBT-friendly nightclub in Southampton, The Edge & Box Bar is the place to be! With karaoke, late-night food and music-free zones, this club is a lively and safe space for all.

For those seeking a dance floor, popular nightclubs like Switch and Popworld present a lively atmosphere with DJs playing music into the early hours.

The Cultural Quarter adds a sophisticated touch to the evening, with theatres and performance venues hosting live shows and events.

Southampton, with its captivating blend of past and present, invites you to explore, indulge, and make lasting memories in this enchanting coastal gem.

Still looking for a student flat in Southampton? Check out our student accommodation in Portswood House and Richmond House.