Boasting award-winning beaches and the sizzling south coast sunshine, Bournemouth has an array of things to see and do for all. Perfect for a break by the sea; you can walk the Dorset coastline, catch some culture at the Russell-Cotes House Gallery, explore the myriad green spaces, check out a shoreline festival and return home refreshed and re-energised.
From traditional Victorian gardens to celebrated tropical gardens, Bournemouth and the surrounding areas of Alum Chine and Boscombe have an array of green gorgeousness at which to marvel. Located close to the shoreline with views out across the bay to the Isle of Wight and the Jurassic Coast – as well as home to a scurry of friendly squirrels who live among the pines with other wildlife – Bournemouth’s parks and gardens are the perfect scene for a gentle stroll.
Want a wildlife fix but need something more hands-on for the kids? The Oceanarium on the seafront is a water-creature wonderland just waiting to be explored. You could even take them for a toot along the prom on a blue and yellow land train, which offers an unlimited day’s travel along two coastal routes.
Bournemouth’s beaches are famous as some of the safest with the addition of RNLI lifeguards seasonally and four Blue Flag beauties to choose from: Alum Chine, Durley Chine, Fisherman’s Walk and Southbourne (some of which are dog-friendly beaches too). With magnificent vistas and all the traditional pier attractions close at hand, grab an ice cream, collapse in a deck chair and enjoy!
If you plan it just right you can get more bang for your buck as Bournemouth hosts a number of free festivals and other world-class entertainment throughout the year. Each August/September, the sky fills with the spectacle of the Bournemouth Air Festival by day and night. The largest event of its kind, you can expect four consecutive days of exhilarating displays in the air, on the land and in the sea at this award-winning crowd-pleaser. Just before this, at the height of the holiday season, the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra bring the music home with their Classical Extravaganza Proms in the Park.
Come September/October, the Arts by the Sea Festival offers the magic of a multi-arts programme, from dance and film to music and literature, comprising more than 50 events throughout Bournemouth. If colour and sparkle are your watch-words, you’ll also want to check out the annual Bournemouth Christmas Tree Wonderland, which offers a festive foray of arboreal amazement and illuminations to delight children of all ages.
Both the seasonal markets and the lively town centre offer plenty of shopping opportunities as well as a variety of excellent eateries and bars. Bournemouth even boasts the south’s first cat cafe where you can spend an afternoon chilling with your favourite feline friends over a cuppa and a slice of cake.
If, like a kitty, you love your home-comforts and a quality place to kip, we’re sure to have the purrfect Bournemouth holiday cottage for you!