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Top things to do in Bournemouth

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Bournemouth: the city's best neighbourhoods

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About Bournemouth

Including tips for the best time to visit Bournemouth

Its seafront location coupled with a plethora of outdoor activity opportunities makes Bournemouth a tourism hotspot in southern England.

Bournemouth is home to five Blue Flag beaches, each offering clean sands, clear waters and lots of things to do. Alum Chine Beach is popular with families while Durley Chine Beach is favoured by dog owners. At Hengistbury Head Beach, you can relax on the sandy areas or take leisurely strolls along walking paths that offer fabulous views of the coastline. Further along the shore is Boscombe Beach, where the iconic Bournemouth Pier is located. Other beaches to visit are Southbourne, Manor Steps and Fisherman's Walk.

Add a cultural touch to your Bournemouth holiday by visiting one of the many museums located in and around the city. Spend a few hours admiring Pre-Raphaelite and Victorian art at Russell Cotes Art Gallery & Museum. Bournemouth International Centre nearby is also known to host temporary art exhibitions. You can head to Bournemouth Natural Science Society to explore a wide range of plant, animal and archaeological displays. Bournemouth Aviation Museum and Poole Museum are other noteworthy museums to visit in the area.

When you visit Bournemouth, you’ll find it quite easy to stay fit and active. Easy access to the water means you can enjoy surfing, kayaking, canoeing, paddleboarding and jet skiing here. Golf courses, tennis courts and sports centres can also be found aplenty. You can even go hiking and cycling along the city's scenic coastal routes.


From £108 per night

Next weekend

From £196 per night

Most popular time to visit October–December
Cheapest time to visit January–March
Local currency GBP
Language English
Average weekend price £1 per night
Average weekday price £1 per night
Typical stay 2 nights

Bournemouth reviews

What other travellers say about Bournemouth


I was shocked that there wasn't a lot of shops in the...

22 March 2023

I was shocked that there wasn't a lot of shops in the town centre. The pier was closed apart from a restaurant at the end. The beach was clean and stretched for what appeared to be miles. Due to time of year I visited it was practically empty. I eat in the spice of India which isn't in the town centre but I would recommend a visit as the food was delicious and as I went on a Tuesday there was a special offer so eat for a reasonable price. I found it easy to drive and park but I would think in the summer it may be more difficult.


It’s an upmarket resort with a great beach and beautiful...

7 March 2023

It’s an upmarket resort with a great beach and beautiful gardens. It is disappointing for me that the city center pubs are dominated by Wetherspoons and of course places like Bournemouth attract the homeless of which there are many. But those that I spoke with were pleasant enough people. Otherwise a wonderful place to visit with great hotels which are excellent value for money. Waking up with a view of Bournemouth beach is not a bad way to start your day.

Ian France

This trip was great for dog owners as the beach was perfect...

25 February 2023

This trip was great for dog owners as the beach was perfect for them off season. Westbourne was a stroll away with some great shops bars and restaurants. The Lazy Fox was great for cocktails and very considerate with our dog. The West Beach restaurant was excellent for a relaxing meal overlooking the beach and i nice bottle of wine. Again very dog friendly and the food was excellent

Barry United Kingdom

Drivers in Bournemouth were quite likely to stop to let...

21 February 2023

Drivers in Bournemouth were quite likely to stop to let people cross than in many other places. Many restaurants were rather lax about taking bookings and about actually being open when they should have been. The sand on the beach is rather badly distributed but I think work in in hand to correct this.

Tony United Kingdom

Bournemouth is a great place lots to see and do.

20 February 2023

Bournemouth is a great place lots to see and do. Dancing Jug was fabulous for a bottomless brunch (cocktails and food) great service staff were lovely. Pinocchio's Italian restaurant was absolutely amazing great food and great service. Its a little hilly in places so be prepared to walk a lot not easily accessible for a disabled person without a scooter but taxis are plentiful so travelling is fine but can be costly addition to a break.

Tracey SuttonPoss
Tracey SuttonPoss United Kingdom

There are friendly people.

9 February 2023

There are friendly people. It is beautiful. Functional public transport. It was quite easy getting around. I bought my food from a supermarket. There were eating houses but I did not get any food from these places.

Felicitas United Kingdom

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