Bournemouth has many attractions that keep visitors coming back year after year but the one thing that separates it from all the other coastal towns across the country is its award-winning beach. As a member of the management team at the luxury seafront establishment – the Hermitage Hotel – said, “Since 2012, when Bournemouth’s beach was officially recognised as the best in the country by TripAdvisor, more British people have realised just how much the town has to offer when compared with other UK resorts and even those in Continental Europe. The beach actually came 4th in the whole of Europe, which we think is a real achievement for a traditional English seaside town.”
Whilst it’s undoubtedly true that Bournemouth’s 7 miles of award-winning golden sands are a major draw, there are many other attractions that are well worth making time for if you decide to take a break in this pretty Dorset town. Below are 5 that keep cropping up when visitors are asked where they most want to go during their stay.
1. The Bournemouth Arcade – A great example of its kind, this beautiful Victorian arcade is situated between Old Christchurch Rd. and Gervis Pl. It was originally an open air arcade, built in 1866; the roof was added 6 years later in 1872. Today, it is home to a variety of interesting shops, including a branch of Waterstone’s (the bookshop chain), an ice cream parlour, a supermarket, a chocolatier and a women’s clothing outlet.
2. Bournemouth Oceanarium – Around 50 metres from the seafront information centre can be found the Bournemouth Aquarium, a major local attraction that features an impressive Barrier Reef section with an underwater walkway.
3. Hurn Paintball Centre – Although not technically in Bournemouth itself, this popular outdoor paintball centre is only 6 miles from the seafront and is well worth a visit if you are a fan of this pastime. With 4 separate game zones from which to choose and all equipment supplied at very reasonable prices, it is a great day out for families and groups of friends.
4. The Lower, Central and Upper Gardens – Linked together to form a continuous swathe of greenery that stretches from the pier to the Coy Pond in the north of the town, the three sections that comprise Bournemouth’s Victorian Gardens provide a great setting for an afternoon stroll or an early morning walk before breakfast.
5. Bournemouth Balloon – If you decide to take a wander in the aforementioned gardens and fancy a more panoramic view of the town and local coastline, Bournemouth Balloon can be found in the Lower Gardens. After boarding the enclosed gondola, the helium-filled balloon above will gently lift you and your fellow passengers to a height of 500 feet, all the time safely tethered to a high-tensile steel cable.
With its unusually warm weather in the summer months, a host of interesting attractions and an award-winning beach, Bournemouth should definitely be on your shortlist if you are thinking about holidaying in the UK this year.