Mayflower in the harbour

Birthplace of the Mayflower

Harwich is the UK's second busiest passenger ferry port with a long and fascinating seafaring history.

This coastal town is believed to be where the Mayflower ship was built and was also home to the Master of the Ship, Christopher Jones. Step back in time and walk in the footsteps of the Mayflower's Captain as you explore his 17th century home on Kings Head Street.

Explore this historic town a little further and follow the Maritime Heritage Trail, taking in sights such as the High Lighthouse, Lifeboat Museum, Guildhall and Harwich Redoubt Fort. If you're visiting in the summer, join a guided walk from Ha'Penny Pier Visitor Centre on the Quay.

Harwich sunset
Ha'penny Pier with a boat, Harwich


One of the easiest and most attractive ways to travel right into the heart of Harwich is along the aptly named Mayflower Line. This picturesque railway line runs from the market town of Manningtree, connecting with services from London and Ipswich and follows the path of the River Stour estuary along to historic Harwich.

Travel by train
Take the scenic route and explore Mayflower 400 celebrations by rail
Poacher Line
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Gainsborough Old Hall, Lincolnshire
London to Harwich 1hr20 Austerfield Babworth Boston Dartmouth Plymouth Gainsborough Southampton Harwich Other destinations Other destinations Other destinations


If you are visiting from overseas, check out the great value BritRail Pass. A single stress-free ticket that covers all your rail journeys on the national network and offers great value.

Get more money-saving rail tips for Brits and visitors alike to help you plan your adventure.

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