Plymouth Hoe

Plymouth Hoe information

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Francis Drake supposedly spied the Spanish fleet from this grassy headland overlooking Plymouth Sound (the city's wide bay); the fabled bowling green on which he finished his game was probably where his statue now stands. Later the Hoe became a Victorian holiday spot and the wide promenade is backed by an array of multistoreyed villas and once-grand hotels.

The red-and-white-striped former lighthouse, Smeaton's Tower , was built 14 miles offshore on the Eddystone Rocks in 1759, then moved to the Hoe in 1882. Climbing its 93 steps provides an illuminating insight into lighthouse keepers' lives and stunning views of the city, Dartmoor and the sea. Evidence of Plymouth's martial past comes in the form of the Citadel , a huge 17-century fortress (still an army base), and scores of war memorials; the largest bears the names of 23,186 Commonwealth sailors who were lost at sea during WWI and WWII.