Platform Tavern is one of two pubs in Southampton with a significant Titanic connection, the other is The Grapes. Remember the scene in James Cameron's film where Jack wins his ticket playing cards? This is the pub that scene took place in. In those days, before the other side of the road was developed, you could look across from the pub and see the Titanic moored like a huge floating cliff. Mr McCready, one of the stewards lost with the ship, lodged here. Today it is a quiet spot to sit inside or outside and enjoy a relaxing drink.
This is the oldest and one of the most historic pubs in the city. The early 15th-century court room in which the trials are said to have taken place has been preserved and there is even a medieval menu. Because of its lengthy history, The Red Lion is said to be haunted by over 20 different spirits and the pub often hosts ghost hunt nights.
The Hobbit is the number one student pub in Southampton. The huge beer garden at the back makes it a real hit in the summer months, but in the winter you can't find a seat indoors. There is a large pyramid stage at the back of the garden that often hosts bands on bank holidays. There is also live music indoors, from blues to grunge, on Friday and Saturday nights. The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly with no dress code and there is a happy hour.
Enjoy a pint in a pub with a real historical background. Built in 1494, Duke of Wellington was the earliest surviving brew house in this part of England, and it was here in Tudor times that the townsfolk had their first taste of beer. Originally the Shipwright's Arms, the pub was renamed after the hero of the Battle of Waterloo. There are lovely log fires in winter, plus great grub all year round. Apart from having a great Tudor interior and friendly staff, the pub is thought to be haunted by the ghost of a young lad who was press ganged in the 18th Century.
This combined club, bar and restaurant is the focal point of Southampton's thriving gay community. In the packed downstairs bar, a mix of gay and straight lads and ladies, plus the odd stray tranny, chat and make new friends or dance to hi-energy classics. Upstairs in the Loft Bar you can enjoy a meal in the dining area, chill out on comfortable sofas or pop down to the garden. A narrow corridor leads through to The Box, a small, dimly lit extension to The Edge. Here the atmosphere is clubbier and the music harder, in a house and garage vein.
Thanks to the state-of-the-art sound equipment, lighting, lasers and videos, Oceana is one of the best dance venue in the area. The club can be found inside the huge Leisure World complex. Around 4,000 crazy clubbers can fit into Oceana's three floors. Different areas are decorated in different styles, from Milan to Monte Carlo to New York Disco, as well as having different age limitations.
This large, stylish bar and cafe could not be better placed. It is located right in the middle of Southampton's main shopping precinct, making it an ideal place to stop off for a drink during a hard day's shop. Food and coffee is served to tired shoppers during the day, while the bar attracts a younger crowd in the evenings. There are two floors with plenty of seating at smart, wooden tables and there is a non smoking area. Upstairs you can relax on sofas and gaze out of bay windows overlooking East Park.
This wine bar from the renowned Yates's chain has a prime spot in the center of Southampton. Noisy and lively with a young crowd in the evenings, there is a more relaxed atmosphere during the daytime. There is a good selection of table wines and food is served with a waiting guarantee of 15 minutes. Food and drink can also be ordered on account and settled when you leave. However, the decor is somewhat on the busy side, with the patterned carpet particularly hard on the eyes!
Taste of Thailand is situated by the old walls of Southampton and faces onto the WestQuay Shopping Centre. It has a lively atmosphere, sometimes stoked by the appearance of live bands, and is a popular place for a meal with friends. Try the Thai curry or the sweet and sour chicken. Or for a really succulent taste tuck into the beef, fish or King Prawn dishes, washed down with Thai Beer.
The Juniper Berry is an interesting corner of Southampton old town in which to enjoy a quiet drink. Previously known as Bosun's Locker, this pub is based on the site of a house where Jane Austen lived with her mother, brother and his wife for three years between 1806 and 1809. Unfortunately the house was demolished during a slum clearance in 1901, so a potential tourist attraction was lost. You can sit outside on sunny days and peer under a Castle Bailey arch, which was once underground. This pub is lovely in the daytime, but does get a bit rowdy at night.