Bournemouth is a great place to visit in the winter. The main reason being availability. It’s amazing what you can do in Bournemouth. We took a trip to Bournemouth this winter and loved every minute of it.
Let’s take you through why Bournemouth is a great place to visit in winter
- Zip Line Across the Seas – Without Queues
- Ride on the Observation Wheel – Without Queues
- A Jurassic Coast tour for a discount
- Book a great hotel last minute
- Go to some great restaurants without reservations
Activities like the PierZip Line or tours of the Jurassic Coastline are also more affordable with less waiting time in queues. Anyway let’s get into it, Bournemouth in Winter and our Reasons to go in the Off-Season.
Okay, getting a suntan may be difficult but there’s still a lot to do.
Not to mention that the weather is warmer than the rest of the UK (Note warmer, – you may still need your coat).
Zipline across the sea
Yes, that’s right – you can zip line (250 meters) above the sea at Bournemouth Pier!
PierZip is located on Bournemouth Pier, which you will need to pay a small fee (£1.50) to enter. You’re greeted by the staff who’ll instantly put at ease (great if you’re a bit nervous!).
Costs: The PierZip costs £15 for a single ride, £26 for a dual ride (two persons) during the winter (October – March), compared with £18 for a single ride and £32 for a dual ride in the summer.
Check out the PierZips website here if you want any more information or just want to check prices.
As mentioned above as well, the queues are minimal in the winter.
On entering PierZip, you’re suited up with all the gear, strapped in pretty tight we might add and directed straight to the staircase tower located at the end of the Pier. It’s about 60ft high.
The Zip Line is about 250 meters long and stretches out to the beach.
Climbing up the staircase is quite steep and you may have to queue for while depending on how busy it is. So a heads up if you’re scared of heights.
Once at the top, you’ll be greeted by more staff who’ll take your picture (say cheese!) securely fasten you to the zip line and go through the safety talk.
1 minute later and you’ll be stepping off the platform and zip lining all the way down to the beach. The most exhilarating experience and although over very quickly, you’ll get a great view!
The photos cost £6 for two, £15 for three.
Ride on the Observation Wheel
If you’re not great with jumping off into the air, a great alternative to get to see the view is going onto the Observation Wheel. Check this link to Bournemouths official website for more details
Cost: £6 per adult where the ride lasts about 10 minutes.
We were fortunate to have the wheel to ourselves – no queuing and an extra lap around the wheel!
The Beach is STILL great in the Winter, not to mention the fish and chips.
You can’t go to the beach without grabbing fish and chips on the beach. With plenty of places to choose from, grab some food and find a nice spot on the bench or on the sand to chow down.
The beach itself is great for walks, sunrises, swimming (if you can bear the cold) even in the winter.
Visit nearby towns such as Westbourne and Poole
Bournemouth is surrounded by several towns and villages. Two of which we managed to visit while in Bournemouth was Poole and Westbourne.
Poole, situated next door to Bournemouth boasts magnificent views across the sea.
We stayed along Sandbanks Hotel – known for millionaire’s row (gorgeous houses!) and apparently the fourth most expensive area to buy a house in the world.
A number of celebrities own houses in Sandbanks, including Harry Redknapp and Elton John, so you may even bump into someone famous.
Westbourne, a village, practically within Bournemouth is a great place to visit. We stopped by on our way home.
Why go to Westbourne? It’s building a reputation of becoming a place for foodies. For a village, it had a fantastic range of places to eat whatever you’re in the mood for.
We decided to eat at Circo Lounge. Check out this link to trip advisor if you feel like going. This was a trendy cafe in the heart of the village. It looks small from the outside, but it’s roomy inside.
They had a great selection of food, family favorites including macaroni and cheese and chicken burgers, reasonably priced and the service was great!
Take a cruise along the Jurassic coastline
Being on the south coast, there was no way we were going to head back home without seeing the Jurassic coastline.
Although this stretches for miles and as we were short of time, a great way to see this was through the city cruise. We spent just over 2 hours on a boat with a guided detailed tour on a route which was fascinating.
Cost: 15 per adult, we thought this was good value for money.
Even if you’re not that interested in the facts, it’s a relaxing boat ride seeing the beautiful scenery.
Especially going off-peak season, we managed to take advantage of the great views, given that there were fewer people and managed to take great photos from all angles.
Our Top Tips
Great to visit in winter/autumn as well as summer if the weather is nice as the area is definitely quieter.
Ziplining is cheaper to do from October on-wards. You can also save money if there are two of you by purchasing a dual ticket or a family ticket if you have kids.
Take a car. Although there is public transport, it’s just easier to get around by car and especially if you have limited time in the area, you can cover more ground.
Where to Stay
We stayed in the Sandbanks Hotel located on the beachfront with views out to the sea. The hotel itself was comfortable and included an indoor swimming pool, sauna, and a fitness room.
It’s a family-friendly hotel, with ample parking and the service was great.
Bournemouth Parks and Gardens
Although we didn’t get a chance to visit whilst we were in town, Bournemouth has a number of parks and gardens. Some of which date back to Victorian times.
- Lower Gardens
- Central Gardens
- Upper Gardens
Lower, Central and Upper Gardens have all been Green Flag winners since 1999 and run from Bournemouth pier to the boundary with Poole.
The gardens are 3 km long. They are all part of the Bourne Valley Greenway and are Listed Grade II in the English Heritage Register of Parks and Gardens.
Here’s a link if you’re interested in finding out about the history of the gardens.
During the winter period and Christmas, they have a Christmas Tree wonderland that goes all the way from the seafront all the way to the Town center.
The best part it’s free, and filled with music and entertainment.
There’s also a coastal activity park that hosts watersports and land-based adventure activities all year round.
The great thing about it is they have a number of activities which are free. More information can be found on trip advisor through this link
Watersport activities include:
- Volleyball on the beach
- Ballroom Dancing
- Pilates overlooking the beach
So in summary…
Bournemouth and surroun is a beautiful region and there’s so much to see and do. If you have more than a weekend here there’s definitely enough to do to stretch out your holiday to a week.
If you have any areas in Dorset you’d recommend visiting, please share below, we would love to hear from you!
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