Take a seaside break to Bournemouth
Date Posted: 02/08/12
The Dorset seaside destination of Bournemouth is one of the most popular holiday destinations on the whole of the south coast, offering stunning beaches and glorious countryside, among a vibrant and exciting town centre. There's much to do in the town on vacation, so use this Bournemouth guide to make the most of your trip.
Travel from pier to pier on Bournemouth beach
No trip to Bournemouth would be complete without a stroll along its seven-miles of award-winning, famous beaches beneath the magnificent cliff line. Whether you want to sit on a deck chair and soak up the sea air or engage in some serious water sports, the beaches are perfect. Experience all this beneath the great views of the Isle of Wight and the Purbecks.
One great activity is to walk from either Bournemouth or Boscombe Pier and finish up at the other. You can traverse the wonderful promenade and stop off for a bite to eat or a cup of coffee at one of the many cafes and restaurants at either end.
If you're feeling particularly daring, you should take a dip in the sea, where temperatures are, in fact, some of the warmest in the UK, not that this means it is the Mediterranean, but certainly worth the plunge.
Soak up culture at the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum
One of the most significant and captivating museums in the whole of England and even the world, the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum is full of enthralling wonders, amid the beautiful grounds of the East Cliff Hall.
Exhibitions at the moment include Marcus Adam: Royal Photographer, involving a showcase of photographs from the Royal Collection, which runs until Sunday, September 16th. It provides an intimate insight into two generations of the Royal family between 1926 and 1956.
Dashwood: Father and Son, meanwhile, exhibits the work of world-renowned bird sculptor Geoffrey Dashwood and his son, the photographer Leo Dashwood, whose focus is on the human form. One of the highlights is a 3.5m tall, 1.6 tonne bronze peregrine falcon, which will be on display in the garden of the Russell-Cotes.
Explore the New Forest National Park
With the New Forest National Park right on your doorstep in Bournemouth, it would be silly not to take the opportunity to take a day break to this beautiful area of England.
Despite its name, it is not strictly a forest, or new, and is rather a mélange of open heath and gorseland, with forest enclosures intermixed, but that does not take away from its appeal.
One of the best ways to explore the New Forest is on bicycle, as it has endless miles of off-road tracks that can take you in to the heart of the national park. You don't have to be a makeshift Bradley Wiggins either, it's very flat with few hills, making it a breeze to navigate.
If you don't fancy a two-wheeled trip, there are plenty of great walking routes, and you can even get on horseback to get to know the New Forest in a much more intimate way.
Once you've finished your exploration, stop in one of the park's array of quaint, picturesque villages, such as Blissford or Fordingbridge, for a drink and a hearty meal at one of the many great pubs and restaurants.
Get the real spa experience at the Norfolk Royale
If you're looking for a bit of spa magic, Bournemouth hotels have everything you need to kick back and relax while on holiday and get the true, luxurious treatment.
One of the best hotels for Bournemouth spa breaks is the Norfolk Royale, an Edwardian hotel located in the heart of the town among the stylish shops, beautiful gardens and famous theatres.
Get yourself a back massage, a file and polish or mini-facial and relax in the leisure spa, with its pool, Jacuzzi, steam room and sauna.
Alternatively, you can try the Hallmark Hotel and Spa Bournemouth, which is a four-star establishment just a five-minute walk from the town centre with a great lounge-bar, garden and health spa.
Posted by Louise Millard
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