VISITORS to Portsmouth can beat the traffic queues and sail into the city thanks to the return of a popular transport scheme.
A park-and-sail service will soon be under way for the second year to give people an alternative way of getting to Gunwharf Quays.
The scheme is a joint venture between Portsmouth City Council, Portsmouth International Port and Gunwharf Quays, and aims to reduce congestion on the roads during the busy summer holiday period.
Boats will leave from the park-and-ride site at Tipner.
Cabinet member for traffic and transportation Ken Ellcome said he hoped the service would prove as popular as it did last year, when almost 4,000 passengers used it.
He said: ‘We’re delighted to be welcoming the park-and-sail service back this summer.
‘It proved to be a real success last year used by thousands of visitors to Portsmouth.
‘With the service now running from the new park-and-ride we hope it will prove even more successful and help reduce congestion on the roads.’
The trip includes a tour of the harbour with commentary.
Horndean’s Ian Parker, who used the service last year said: ‘We took our grandson who listened to the commentary with great interest, and he lives in North End.’
Doris Cook, from Andover, said she had tried the service with her partner.
She said it made for an enjoyable day out in Portsmouth.
‘We had a wonderful day when we used the park-and-sail, from being met at the car park, then on to the bus and finally the boat trip to Gunwharf Quays, along with the well-performed commentary.
‘My partner went on to visit the Mary Rose Museum followed by HMS Victory, while my friends and I shopped.
‘Then on to the return journey which again was first class.’
A return ticket is £6 for all occupants of a car and includes all-day parking at the park-and-ride site.
The service will operate on weekends between Saturday, July 26 and Monday, August 25.
Boats will operate between 9.40am and 6.30pm with sailings every half an hour.
The scheme is part of the council’s My Journey Portsmouth travel campaign which is funded by the Department for Transport.