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Best things to do in Bournemouth

Discover the city according to locals. Find the best things to do, places to eat, and get priceless advice from the people who live here.

Restaurant
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“A 30 minute walk along the seafront to this trendy restaurant and bar overlooking the beach in Boscombe.”
50local recommendations
Establishment
“Lovely nature reserve perfect for dog walking, scooting, or a level car-free walk to a pretty beach with beach huts and cafe.”
40local recommendations
Hotel
“8 miles of sandy beach with food and refreshments along the way. A mini train runs along a big part of the promenade for those who don’t want to walk far. Swimming is considered very safe as it is a gentle slope into the water.”
29local recommendations
Park
“There is a large car park, cafe and toilets here and a land train that will take you straight down to the beach for a small cost. However, the walk over the Head or around the Head on the beach side may take longer but it is beautiful with stunning views back to Bournemouth and along the coast line to Barton on sea. Not to mention the Isle of Wight. It is simply the best!”
33local recommendations
Art Museum
“A fascinating Victoria villa and gardens located in Bournemouth town centre. Regularly hosts different art collections too. Nice coffee shop.”
38local recommendations
Aquarium
“Dive in to a magical underwater journey and discover 1000’s of amazing creatures above and below the waves at Bournemouth Oceanarium. Submerge yourself in our newly re-themed underwater tunnel, home to stunning sharks, Carrie the loggerhead turtle and many more. Get up close to a cunning croc, mischievous otter family, mesmerizing jellyfish, colourful clownfish and not forgetting our playful colony of Humboldt penguins! New for 2019 Shark Wreck Reef! The newly refurbished walk through tunnel display which incorporates a shipwreck theme surrounded by stunning coral, encompasses an impressive 350 thousand litres of salt water! Visitors can get up close to over 75 creatures, including a variety of shark species, southern stingrays, moray eels and a giant turtle. Don’t miss: - Daily talks and feeds - School holiday activities - Kids’ quiz trail - 11 themed zones ”
25local recommendations
Beach
“Brilliant indoor film complex. Perfect if the weather isn't great. Lots of food and drink options.”
18local recommendations
Establishment
“The largest arts centre in the country outside of London, also home to the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. There are loads of events going on year-round, as well as a cinema.”
19local recommendations
Café
“Nice for a casual dinner and drinks. Make sure to try their duck pizza. Plus they're currently doing Pizza and Prosecco Thursdays!”
26local recommendations
Shopping Centre
“Many high street & brand name shops to chose from, plus cafes and places to eat.”
20local recommendations
Fast Food Restaurant
$
“Indoor entertainment centre, featuring the Splashdown water park and Cineworld cinema, Tenpin bowling, kids soft play, bingo and a range of restaurants.”
20local recommendations
Park
“A great place to come and chill on a lovely day with amenities nearby and close to Bournemouth town centre and Bournemouth pier. Just bring a blanket and a picnic and you'll feel like one of the locals. It's also great to walk into town from home. It takes about an hour but you'll go through coy pond which is simply lovely any time of year/season.”
19local recommendations
Shopping Centre
“If you don't fancy going into Bournemouth Town Centre, Castlepoint Shopping Centre has everything you need from book shops, clothing, supermarkets and the biggest and BEST Marks and Spencer on the south coast of the UK.”
14local recommendations
Restaurant
$$
“My personal favourite, located in Southbourne which is roughly 5 mins from the Annexe if you drive, or 20-25 min walk. From the outside it looks like a restaurant (never actually eaten food in here but is always busy!) but there is a secret bar upstairs. 1930s style offering a small list of cocktails all made to order, or they come up with something you may prefer instead. You have to book and cannot just turn up on the night but it is completely different to anywhere else you will find in Bournemouth! Definitely worth a visit ”
23local recommendations
Church
“Beautiful mediaeval church, luckily spared from Cromwell and King Henry VIII.”
24local recommendations
Bar
$$
“The music is great and there are often special nights like Comedy night, music night.”
22local recommendations