Bournemouth Guide For Visitors

Bournemouth is currently experiencing a revival in its fortunes as a seaside getaway. In the Victorian era the Dorset town was the place to be for upper-class toffs to lounge away their time in a relaxing and invigorating way, and some of the society’s top brass could be found walking through the pine trees and soaking in the spas. It was even a common getaway for royalty. In terms of British weather, Bournemouth is famous for its temperate climate and it receives a low amount of rainfall; but remember in the winter it can sometimes be quite cold, below zero.

The A31 dual carriageway will take you to Bournemouth, but at peak times expect a long wait as the road is susceptible to considerable jams. A more civilized way to arrive would be by train, and you can get to Bournemouth direct from London Waterloo, as well as from other major cities in England. You can also fly direct into Bournemouth Airport, or a bus direct from London will take about two and a half hours.
Bournemouth is most famous for its beaches and pier. Seven miles of sandy beaches and clean water can transport you to a holiday experience resembling the Victorians’. Bournemouth Pier is roughly central to these beaches, and is the main point of seaside activity. You’ll find a tasteful fair at the pier, and it’s also a good spot to organize a boat trip.

When choosing a hotel, Bournemouth has one of the largest ranges of choices in the UK. The fact Bournemouth quickly grew as a famous seaside resort in the 19th century means a lot of the hotels retain strong character, and as the primary function of the resort has remained the same, the prices are competitive. Expect to pay from £25 a night for one of the 3-star cheap hotels in Bournemouth close to the beach, and beach-side hotels can be found from £45-£65 a night.

Bournemouth’s lazy days give way to quite hedonistic nights – it has become one of Britain’s top clubbing cities. Towards the centre you’ll find the trendiest and priciest bars, and scattered throughout Bournemouth you’ll now find over 50 nightclubs, most operating every night. Bournemouth is also known for its large gay community – the Triangle area is the best known, and every year the town is host to Bourne Free, Bournemouth’s gay pride festival.

Shopping is also catered well for; Bournemouth has a good range of independent shops as well as large stores in the city centre. Castlepoint Shopping centre has risen as a prime spot for perusing a large number of large brand stores, but the Boscombe area is perhaps the best place to head for designer, antique and interesting specialist clothes.

Bournemouth also has an Oceanarium, and a few art galleries which mainly showcase Victorian-era art as well as artefacts from the Far East. A short day trip from the town can take you to Corfe Castle through the glorious Sandbanks area. Open top tourist buses operate from Bournemouth and the scenery is well worth the visit.

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