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Guide to Bournemouth

Discover Dorset

Bournemouth and Poole offer plenty to do, from nightlife to sport, and from the countryside to the beach

Discover Dorset

Dorset is home to some incredible areas of natural beauty, and three of the top beaches in the UK as voted by TimeOut. While studying here, you’ll have easy access the UK’s most outstanding coastlines.

The Jurassic Coast is famous for the hundreds of fossils that wash up on its shores every year. You can even find your own on Chesil Beach or on Lyme Regis Fossil Beach.

Explore Dorset

Around 15 minutes east of Bournemouth Pier, you'll find Boscombe Beach, the surf hub of the Dorset coast. The waters around both piers provide some great surf, and when the seas are calmer, why not give stand-up paddle boarding a try?

At the other end of Bournemouth's sandy stretch, you'll find one of its best-kept secrets: Hengistbury Head. This expanse of headland has spectacular views westward along the coast, as well as freshwater ecosystems, perfect for avid birdwatchers.

Along the western side of Bournemouth Pier, you'll find Alum and Durley Chines. These are quieter sunny spots for a more relaxed day out, where you can bring a barbecue after 18.00. Keep going and you'll be met with Sandbanks peninsula, which is perfect for kite surfing on windy days, off Sandbanks Road in Poole.

Even further along, you'll reach Poole Harbour, Brownsea Island and Corfe Castle – these are great historic sites for a day out. Take the iconic Sandbanks Ferry over to Studland Bay, a beautiful National Trust gem, and Swanage, where you can hire kayaks or pedalos to get out on the water.

The Jurassic coast is home to the famous Durdle Door in Lulworth Cove, the UK’s only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site. We'd recommend a train journey with South Western Railway, then hopping on one of the regular buses to and from the station.

A bird’s eye view of our coastline

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Explore Bournemouth

An aerial photograph showing a clifftop, a promenade, a beach and the sea.


AUB is set in one of the most beautiful town on the south coast, find out about our award-winning beaches, nightlife and thriving arts scene

Two rows of colourful beach huts on the sand.


There's so much to explore in our local area, and getting around is a walk in the park – here are some helpful travel tips

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Where to go

From local events, to independent shops and restaurants, there's so much to do in Bournemouth – discover your new hometown