Plymouth and Beyond, Where to visit in Plymouth
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Destination: Barbican, The
Plymouth and Beyond Star Rating

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General - for anyone visiting Plymouth, going to the Barbican is a must, be it during the day or during the night. There are plenty of cafes, takeaways, restaurants, pubs, clubs and little shops to visit. There aren't as many shops now as there used to be, but it is still worth a walk around, especially into 'The House That Jack Built,' which holds some delightful little shops and a Chinese restaurant above. The Barbican can be very busy during the day and night, but it is probably better for families to visit during the day as at night it can get a little more rowdy due to the clubs and pubs. The Barbican is situated next to Queen Ann's Battery and harbour. You can walk across the harbour using a bridge from the Barbican to explore the surrounding areas, including the National Marine Aquarium, a multi storey car park and other various buildings and pubs. The Barbican can be reached from walking through the main city centre or by any form of transport. Lots of tourists from foreign countries visit so the Barbican is well known across the world, and it is where the Pilgrim Fathers set off from to go to America.

Food and Drink - there are many places to purchase food and drink whilst visiting, be it Italian Restaurants, a Chinese Restaurants or the usual Fish and Chips takeaways. There are also a number of pubs which serve excellent food and a full range of drinks. Takeaway Fish and Chips can be eaten outside whilst walking along the harbour or along towards the Hoe, or you can sit outside and eat and watch the world go by. But be warned, do not feed the seagulls!!!

Disabled - it will be quite difficult for people in wheelchairs to get around as the streets are all cobbled and there are plenty of awkward pavements to move around on. I believe there is a disabled toilet in the toilet block, but I woudn't guarantee that it would be very nice. The Barbican can get very busy during the Summer months and during the evenings at weekends, so this will also not be good, and cars seem to whizz through the small street. Not the best place to go, I would suggest, for anyone that would struggle to walk or are on their own in a wheelchair.

Toilets - there is a toilet block available, but unfortunately from past experience, they haven't been very nice at all. They don't seem to get cleaned very often so I would recommend trying not to visit them whilst touring the Barbican. If you have no choice, I would recommend popping into a pub or restaurant to use the facilities. This is a major let down of the barbican im afraid.

Children - some older children may like looking in the gift shops and walking along the harbour area but there isn't really anything else for them. It is not a place to take children in the evenings as they won't be allowed into any pubs and there will be a lot of people walking to and from the bars who usually get a bit rowdy (not in a dangerous way though!). I expect children would be kept quiet with an ice cream but, especially younger children, will probably get bored pretty quickly. It is also not an ideal place for push chairs due to the cobbled streets and awkward pavements.

Pubs - there are lots and lots of pubs to choose from. Some are known to be a bit rough whilst others try and cater for the whole family. They all serve good pub grub at reasonable prices, and stock a wide range of local ales. Be warned that chldren are not allowed in some pubs, and in others, they are not allowed in after 8pm in the evening. During the Summer months, most of the pubs are packed out, but they obviously calm down during the Winter months. Weekends are usually always busy, especially in the evenings as they are the first port of call on the way to the clubs, and many groups do pub crawls along the Barbican as there is such a wide range to choose from. Some bars along the end of the harbour have tables and seating areas outside with bright lights and warm heaters, and thess look really nice in the evenings. Maybe even a touch continental, especially if the weather is good. Some pubs have club areas that open in the evenings and these tend to be more busier than others, and more expensive. General prices of drinks and food are pretty good with most having offers on cocktails and 2 for 1 on some drinks.

Car Parks - just across from the Barbican is a multi storey car park that is within walking distance, though this can be a bit pricey. There is a fairly smallish car park half way up the hill to one end of the Barbican, but this gets full up very early each day, as people park here for work and to get to other parts of the Plymouth area. Some parking spaces a situated towards the end of the Barbican on either side of the road, but again these usually get filled very quickly, especially at the weekend. As far as I know, car park charges apply on every day of the year and throughout the night.

Review Date - 2007-10-27