Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole is blessed with some of the most beautiful sandy beaches and stunning scenery you’ll ever see. A great all weather FREE attraction for the entire family but they can get very busy during the summer months. Although most beaches have parking facilities, it can be tricky to find a space during busy times; your best chance is to arrive early, or use public transport.
Most beaches are doggy friendly, but restrictions may apply on main areas during busy times.
Cycling on the promenade is restricted at certain times during busy months.
Beach huts can be hired directly with BCP Council or privately. These can be very useful for families who plan to visit the beach several times in the same week, because you can leave your belongings locked up in the hut. Some huts even have cooking facilities!
A beach resort situated in Christchurch on a 1/4 mile long section of beach. Facilities including cafe, shop, beach huts and a variety of beach and sports equipment available for hire. Great for families with small children and people with disabilities or mobility problems because it has its own beach level car park (Avon Beach Car Park).
Address: Mudeford, BH23 4AN.
This beach is a ‘Mumbler Must’ and our family favourite by far. With easy pay and display parking, some free street parking within a short walk, large play area suitable for toddlers and young children, public toilet facilities and restaurants and food kiosks around. Also great public transport facilities.
Address: Alum Chine, Bournemouth, Dorset, BH4 8HS.
Branksome offers a large pay and display car park, including disabled spaces. Also toilet facilities, restaurant and shop. Good disabled access and a safe swim zone.
Address: Pinecliff Road, Poole, BH13 6LP.
Very near to Branksome Chine, this beach is perfect for dog owners as there are no restrictions at any time in the year. There are parking facilities available as well as small shops where you can buy ice creams and snacks.
Address: Pinewood Road, BH13 6JP.
Boscombe’s gentle shelving beach, convenient facilities and activities on offer makes it a perfect family day out. There is an eco-friendly mini golf and kiosks and you can hire sun beds, deck chairs, windbreaks and parasols. Parking is available at Undercliff Drive or the small visitors car park near Boscombe Pier. Alternatively, you can use the new Park & Ride service which operates on the summer weekends or hop on the Land Train (April to October)
Address: Sea Road, BH5 1BN.
Bournemouth Beach is hugely popular for 2 reasons – it is right in the centre of town and it’s a great beach – clean, safe and it sometimes even has surf! Toilets are al over the promenade and there are plenty of carparks around. You can even have BBQ’s in the evening down the beach.
Address: Pier Approach, BH2 5AA.
Canford Cliffs Beach
Another fantastic option for families with children, as there’s a large play park only a short walk away. The beach is very close to Canford Cliffs village, where you can find plenty of pay and display, and road parking. Public toilets available and pubs within a short walk. To reach the beach you must walk down a steep heel, so access might be tricky. However, it’s possible to take pushchairs. This is definitely a ‘Mumbler Must’.
Address: Cliff Road, BH13 7HX.
Award winning Durley Chine Beach this golden sandy beach is clean, safe and has all the facilities you’d expect. There are toilets with baby changing facilities, lost children centres, pubs and ice cream kiosks, making it ideal for family days out. It also has many beach huts to rent all year round!
Address: Durley Chine, BH2 5JF.
Fisherman’s Walk is a popular spot for water sports and not quite as packed as the other town beaches. Situated between Southbourne and Boscombe, Fisherman’s Walk is a part-sand, part-shingle blue-flag beach. There are brand new BBQ facilities and free parking available on the road at the top of the cliffs, as well as a crazy golf course and a children’s playground.
Address: Boscombe Overcliff Drive, BH5 2EJ.
Friars Cliff Beach
Shingle and sand beaches ideal for families. Magnificent views of the Isle of Wight and Christchurch Bay. A short walk from the cliff top nature reserve at Steamer Point. Mostly designated for bathing with a water sports area in front of the concrete wave wall at the eastern end of the beach. Parking a short walk away from cliff top at Steamer Point Car Park or Avon Run Road Car Park. Toilets up steps near the Beach Hut Cafe. Open when cafe is open.
Address: Penny Way, BH23 4EP.
A quieter beach with fewer facilities. Public toilets available but closed during the winter months.
Address: Off Haven Road, BH13 7LP.
Dubbed Dorset’s first or last beach depending on how you look at it! Shingle and sand beaches ideal for bodyboarding and bathing, plus numerous promenades and cliffside paths to explore. A Café with toilet and changing room facilities is on the cliff top next to the Highcliff Top Carpark.
Address: Wharncliffe Road, BH23 5DE.
Most definitely a ‘Mumbler Must’. Easy pay and display parking on site, as well as road parking nearby. Very large play area and best of all, paddling pool during the hot months. Pushchair access to the beach isn’t possible, so many families take a small UV tent with them, a packed lunch and place themselves at the park. Then beach can be access by foot. Public toilets and shops selling snacks available.
Address: Lulworth Avenue, BH15 4DQ.
Although it has very few facilities, it is a great option for dog owners, as there are no restrictions. Pay and display car park nearby and public toilets. Also a nature reserve and the opportunity for fishing.
Address: Lake Drive, Poole, BH15 4LR.
Manor Steps Beach
The sandy Manor Steps beach, to the east of Boscombe Pier is one of the quieter beaches in the Bournemouth area. There is also “fish-friendly” mini-golf, with biodegradable golf balls which are fed to the fish. There are plenty of good facilities nearby, including a number of restaurants.
Address: Boscombe Overcliff Drive, BH5 1FH.
Mudeford Sandbank Beach
A unique and beautiful sand spit which adjoins the ancient headland of Hengistbury Head and forms a natural barrier between Christchurch Harbour and the open sea. Nearest car park is at Mudeford Quay, however you’ll need to catch a passenger ferry across to the beach. Alternative parking at Hengistbury Head Car Park with a 1 mile, level walk. There are 5 toilet location, one with hot showers.
Address: The Spit, BH6 4EW.
Another ‘Mumbler Must’. This beach offers beautiful surroundings and great facilities. Pay and display parking, public toilets, children play area, crazy golf, water sports, cafes, pubs and restaurants nearby, excellent public transport links and more.
Address: Banks Road, BH13 7QQ.
Southbourne Beach is one of Bournemouth’s most popular beaches, loved by locals and visitors for its clean, sandy and shingle beaches located east of Boscombe Pier and the town centre. Toilets with baby changing facilities on the promenade, pubs and kiosks and beach huts to hire and a nature trail a lovely walk along between Fisherman’s Avenue and Portman Crescent in Southbourne.. Small car park at Southbourne Crossroads car park, or cliff top parking on Southbourne Coast Road and Southbourne Overcliff Drive.
Address: Southbourne Coast Road, BH5 2EL.
Shore Road Beach
A lovely beach for water sports with a hotel with restaurants, ice cream kiosks and a cafe nearby. The area is also renowned for its wind and kite surfing, due to its close proximity to the safe, shallow waters of Poole Harbour which offer the perfect location to to hire equipment or have lessons. Toilets near the Jazz cafe. Parking available at Shore Road Surface Car Park.
Address: Shore Road, BH13 7PJ.
East Lulworth, Wareham BH20 5QS.
Lulworth estate is without doubt one of the most beautiful places in the UK.
Whether you choose to paddle in the beautiful crystalline waters at Lulworth Cove or walk around the magnificent Durdle Door; or perhaps exploring Lulworth Castle, ‘the most beautiful castle in the south’, the options are endless. This is definitely a ‘Mumbler Must’ for families with children of any age.
For more information contact 01929 400352.
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