10 fun things to do outdoors in Bournemouth this spring
Bournemouth is one of the UK’s best-loved coastal cities. With 7 miles of beautiful beaches, and access to the the nearby New Forest, there are endless outdoor activities to enjoy.
Whether you are in Bournemouth for short-term programme such as an Intensive English or Cambridge exam preparation course, or a long term A-level or Foundation course, there will be plenty for you to enjoy and try outside of lessons.
Below are just a few of our suggestions.
Check out an outdoor art gallery
The Upside Gallery is a permanent outdoor gallery located in the heart of Bournemouth which showcases graffiti and street art from some of the UK’s most exciting urban artists. Located in the Upper Gardens, the Upside Gallery has transformed a neglected space into a free public art destination that can be enjoyed year-round.
Visit Bournemouth Pier
You can visit the famous Bournemouth Pier totally free of charge! The pier is great for an evening stroll or a place to take some awesome photos of the beach. There is also a restaurant and amusement rides on the pier for you to enjoy!
The RockReef Activity Centre, located just next to the Pier, offers additional activities including ziplining and bouldering:
Take a trip to the Jurassic Coast
There is a reason that area of the Jurassic Coast attracts more than 500,000 visitors every year. Lulworth Cove is famous for its unique geology and landforms including the Lulworth crumple and stair hole, and Durdle Door is known for being one of the most famous stone arches in the world. Both Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door are open every day for visitors and are free to visit. They are roughly 20-miles from Bournemouth town centre, and a return bus ticket can be booked with special prices available for students.
Have a Picnic at Meyrick Park
Who doesn’t love a relaxing picnic with some friends? Pick up some food and drinks from one of the many shops or restaurants located in Bournemouth town centre and head to Meyrick Park, which is a five-minute walk from Kings Bournemouth and a 10-minute walk from the town centre.
Meyrick Park was originally part of a huge area of heathland registered back in the doomsday book of 1086, and also has tennis courts, a bowls centre, an 18-hole golf course and a fitness club.
Borrow a Beryl Bike
You’ll find around 1200 ‘Beryl Bikes’ located at 334 ‘Beryl Bays’ around Bournemouth. These bikes are available for everyone to borrow, enabling you to explore the city and surrounding areas on two wheels!
With prices starting from £0.05 per minute for a one-off ride, the Beryl Bikes are an affordable and eco-friendly way of getting around the city. Download the app and sign up for an account to get started.
Take a boat trip to Brownsea Island
Brownsea Island is the largest of the islands located in Poole Harbour, and is well known for having extraordinary wildlife living there, such as peacocks, kingfishers, red squirrels, otters, pheasants and if you’re lucky enough to spot them, deer! As Brownsea Island is obviously an island (!) it can only be accessed by boat or ferry. The price of the ferry from Poole Quay is £8.80 for a return and takes around 20 minutes each way.
Get your Skis on at Snowtrax!
Snowtrax is an outdoor skiing activity centre, and ideal for people who are interested in developing their skiing or snowboarding skills. The centre also has ski bobs — or Ringo’s — which are also great for sliding down the slopes! There is something for everyone. If you’re not a skier or snowboarder there is also an alpine adventure park with trampolines, swings and a huge fort.
Go for a long walk or hike around the Purbecks
The Purbecks — sometimes known as the Isle of Purbeck, despite not actually being an island — is an area on the outskirts of Bournemouth that offers stunning natural scenery and is the perfect place for a long weekend hike.
There are a number of well-known trails to be explored there such as Swanage to Poole which is a 11.5km walk, or Kimmeridge to Worth Travers which is a 11.7km walk.
Try a new water sport — paddle boarding, surfing, kayaking, wakeboarding
Bournemouth is a sporty and active city with plenty of opportunities for you to try out exciting new activities that make the most of the local area.
On the seafront, you’ll find lots of places where you can hire equipment or book lessons in a wide range of water sports — paddle boarding, sailing, surfing, kayaking, wakeboarding, windsurfing and more!
Check out the historic Highcliffe Castle
Highcliffe Castle, located around 10 miles down the coast from Bournemouth, was built in 1831 by Lord Stuart de Rothesay — a distinguished and successful British diplomat.
The castle itself will reopen for visitors from the end of May, but the castle grounds are open now and welcoming visitors to enjoy a Spring walk and take in the beautiful coastal scenery with views out to the Isle of Wight.
You can get to the castle by bus, taking the X1 or X2 from the town centre.