Hotels in Bournemouth

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Reclining on the south coast of England, Bournemouth exists at a relaxed pace. A popular resort for well over a century, it’s a welcome cliché of invigorating air, pleasant weather, and clean seas gilded with sandy beaches. Despite its reputation as a retirement town, the Dorset haven has since been rejuvenated by a trendier, more bohemian crowd; earning it the nickname ‘BoMo’. Now a colorful destination, Bournemouth is awash with fabulous amenities, plenty to do and a buzzing nightlife. Of course, it still retains that British seaside charm.

Things to see

Bournemouth’s biggest draw is undoubtedly its coast. With views of the Purbecks and Isle of Wight, the seven mile stretch of clean, golden beaches are considered as some of the best in Europe. The famous pier offers some good old-fashioned family fun with a games arcade at the entrance, whilst a traditional theater and café are located on the pier itself. The Bournemouth International Centre is the largest entertainment venue in the area, hosting some of the biggest stars in music – so check what’ll be on prior to your visit. For tropical fragrance and Victorian fancy, take a turn around Bournemouth’s tranquil lower gardens. With outdoor concerts held during the summer months and views to the sea, you can spend an afternoon picnicking before inhaling the famously healthy air of the Pine Walk. Described by some as Bournemouth’s scruffier younger sibling, Boscombe is home to The O2 Academy and an array of quaint antique shops.

Hotels in Bournemouth

The town has been a holiday hotspot ever since the 1800’s, when the Victorians descended and built an impressive portfolio of lavish accommodation for England’s holidaying high society. With such establishments still operating today, hotels in Bournemouth all follow a common theme: sheer relaxation and genteel leisure. The luxury laden options boast health and beauty spas, indulgent dining, and breezy sea views. Many of the reasonably priced mid-range hotels also provide leisure facilities, along with one or two posh accoutrements. For those on a budget, cheap hotels in Bournemouth come in the form of well known chain hotels and cheerful B&Bs.

Where to stay

A hotel in Bournemouth town center puts you at the heart of all there is to experience. With a barrage of just-so restaurants and cafés, shops, and boutiques selling everything from well known brand goods to vintage apparel, there’s always somewhere to splurge. If shopping takes its toll, then the town center’s award-winning gardens are an oasis of calm, where you can refuel with an ice cream. Bournemouth isn’t so large that walking everywhere is impossible, and you’re never far from the beach, but for slightly longer distances buses run frequently about town - making getting about as breezy as the sea air.

How to get to

International visitors will possibly touch down at Bournemouth International Airport. Located just 4 miles north of Bournemouth, various European airlines fly directly there. If you’re coming from further afield however, then nearby London Heathrow and Gatwick are better connected gateways. Getting to Bournemouth by train is simple, with direct services from London Waterloo to Bournemouth Station operating regularly, whilst many trains from the north terminate at Bournemouth. For the budget holiday maker, buses and coaches are much cheaper, with the National Express Bus taking 2.5 hours to reach the resort from London. Once there, a bus or cheap taxi can whisk you away to your hotel.

When are the best times to travel to Bournemouth?

Visit Bournemouth during the spring months for a relaxed and tranquil seafront town atmosphere – you’ll find plenty of cheap Bournemouth hotels in this season, too. Similarly, the cooler autumn months, from October to November, boast plenty of discount hotels. In winter, Bournemouth erupts with festive activities, like charming old-fashioned craft markets. The summertime, from June to September, sees Bournemouth bounce with Carnival Week, and the sun-struck days provide a perfect environment to enjoy Bournemouth’s expanse of sandy beachfront.

What are the top must-see attractions in Bournemouth?

An essential part of any Bournemouth visit is seeing the Bournemouth Pier, a classic 19th-century timber pier and promenade, capped by a retro Pier Theatre. After, architecture enthusiasts can visit St Peter’s Church, a refined, late 19th-century church championing a Gothic Revival style, topped with a sharp-pointed spire. For more captivating architecture, stop by the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum, an elegant cone-topped Art Nouveau structure surrounded by a fountain-studded exotic garden.

What are the best types of food and restaurants in Bournemouth?

Bournemouth celebrates the traditional English fish and chips takeaway restaurant; you’ll find many a cheap chippy down by the oceanfront and in the town centre. Bournemouth’s cuisine scene also offers up international fare, particularly Chinese and Indian restaurants. In the buzzing Triangle Area – a central arts, dining, and entertainment hub – you’ll find several Mediterranean restaurants. For fine dining, explore the luxury hotels in Bournemouth, many of which offer upscale in-house restaurants serving French-inspired cuisine and seafood.

What are the top things to do in Bournemouth?

Nature lovers can venture outside of the town proper to Hengistbury Head, a hilly tree-dotted headland jutting into the English Channel waters. Hengistbury is both a nature reserve, due to its rich array of birdlife, and an ancient monument, due to the Stone Age, Bronze Age and Roman artefacts recovered here. Back in Bournemouth, families can visit the Oceanarium, a waterfront aquarium housing sea turtles, stingrays and sharks. And no trip to Bournemouth is complete without a stroll along Bournemouth Beach, an expanse of spacious white-gold sands stretching for 7 miles.

What are some fun facts about Bournemouth?

Adrenaline seekers will be happy to discover that Bournemouth is home to the world’s first pier-to-shore zip line, spanning from Bournemouth Pier across the ocean waters to the sandy beach. Before the arrival of the railway line in 1870, Bournemouth was largely deserted, but regularly visited by gangs of smugglers. Bournemouth lies on the eastern end of the Jurassic Coast – a continuous tract of coastal rock covering the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. As such, the rocky beachfront along this coast is covered in millions of prehistoric fossils.

What kinds of public transport are there in Bournemouth?

Bournemouth proper is small enough to explore on foot – bicycle rentals are a popular option, too, particularly in the summer months. To reach areas outside the central town, travel in Bournemouth is a breeze thanks to the extensive bus routes that twist throughout the centre, down along the coast and out to surrounding suburbs. Bournemouth is also flush with taxicabs providing quick and easy rides – for total convenience, telephone a cab in advance of travel.

Bournemouth Travel Guides & Things To Do

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