School Visits and trips to HMS Belfast

Inspire the next generation by exploring all nine decks of HMS Belfast to discover what life was like on board for the crew at war and at sea. 

The most significant surviving Second World War Royal Navy warship, HMS Belfast's unique history is ready and waiting to be discovered. 

Already booked a visit?
Find everything you need to help you prepare.

Things to do

A family exploring HMS Belfast

There are countless things to explore and do on board HMS Belfast. Your group can:  

  • Steer the ship
  • Sit in the Captain's chair 
  • Get hand on in the Operations Room
  • Find the prison cell 

Find out more by visiting our What's Here page

Self-guided visits

A self-guided visit to HMS Belfast is suitable for ages 7+ (Key Stage 2 above) and could support many areas of study including the Second World War, Arctic Convoys and the Korean War. 

Self-guided visits for schools include free audio guides and a printed resources for teachers and group leaders to support your exploration of the ship. 

Find out more by visiting our Self-guided visits page

Plan and book a school visit

HMS Belfast is easily accessible via public transport, making it perfectly located for your next school trip. Visit our Getting here page for more information. 

All schools must book in advance. To start the booking request please fill out our Schools Visit Request Form. You will be contacted within ten working days with a response to your booking request and further information. 

Visit our plan and book a school visit page for ticket prices and booking information. 

Important information

  • Safeguarding

    IWM wishes to ensure that all children and vulnerable adults are safe and protected from harm whilst visiting its premises.

    Our safeguarding policy (pdf) and accompanying procedures outline the safeguarding systems we have in place.

  • Risk identification

    We encourage teachers to visit HMS Belfast to carry out pre-visit planning to help produce their risk assessments. 

    Teachers can receive two free group leader pre-visit tickets by emailing: [email protected]

    For more information please visit: Risk identification at HMS Belfast

  • Accessibility

    Two decks on board HMS Belfast can be accessed without needing to climb up or down ladders. However, there are other areas below deck that may be unsuitable for those with restricted mobility, wheelchair users and prams. We have provisions in place for SEN students.

    Please visit our accessibility page for more information.

More information

For more information about school visits to HMS Belfast please contact us. 

You can also join our mailing list to receive news and updates for Learning and Engagement at IWM.

Stay on HMS Belfast

A group of young scouts sit around desks listening to a teacher. The female teacher holds a black and white image of HMS Belfast and the ships crew.

Schools and youth groups are invited to enjoy a nautical overnight stay on board HMS Belfast and experience life below deck in this adventure on the River Thames.

Find out more about Kip in a Ship >