It might be winter here in England, but you can’t beat a crisp blue skied day like this down on Boscombe beach.
Boscombe beach is located between Bournemouth beach and Southbourne. You can see Bournemouth Pier from Boscombe Pier and the pleasant walk between the 2 is only 1.4 miles. If you feel like a slightly longer walk, Southbourne is in the opposite direction about 2 miles away along Boscombe promenade.
Boscombe beach is a popular spot for surfers, both experienced and learners. The beach is family friendly with all the facilities you need for a day out during the warmer summer months. There are places to grab a bite to eat, either a quick portion of chips by the pier entrance, or a larger meal at the Harvester or popular Urban Reef.
The beach isn’t far away from the town centre (about 10 minutes on foot) which has a number of high street shops and supermarkets.
There is a carpark by Boscombe beach but it is very small and we struggle to get a space even in the winter. Today we managed to get a space on the beach front but in summer months I would get a parking spot in town and walk down to the beach. A good car park to try in Boscombe is the one on Hawkwood Road (BH5 1DR) a 10 minute walk from the beach.
The great thing about living in Dorset is that we get quite a few friends and family coming to visit. There is so much to do in the area, with the beautiful Dorset beaches and the New Forest not far away.
This weekend we had some friends come to stay with their two young boys. So, what better place to take them than Mudeford Quay? What kid (and adult) doesn’t enjoy a spot of crabbing?
Earlier in the day we had taken them to Sandbanks and then to Bournemouth seafront for a bit of lunch, so Mudeford was the final destination of the day.
We weren’t especially organised and arrived without any bait to lure in the crabs. Fortunately the shop at Mudeford Quay sells the typical seaside merchandise, including the crabbing gear you need. We bought some fish as bait (but we prefer to use raw bacon) and set up along the quay.
The good thing about crabbing in Mudeford is there are loads of crabs! Usually we catch about 20, pop them in our bucket of water and then let them all go again at the end.
Unfortunately this time we stood there for an hour and caught nothing. Nada. Our friends needed to make their journey back to Sussex so we waved them off and decided to give it 5 more minutes. 20 minutes later we had 20+ crabs in our buckets, I guess they were playing shy before.
Even if crabbing isn’t your thing, a visit to Mudeford is still well worth it. The cute picturesque cottages line the surrounding quay, lobster pots and fishing nets piled up from the local fishermen with a shop selling fresh fish. There is a café restaurant serving food and refreshments as well as the Haven House Inn pub with a good bar menu. Near the quay there is a children’s play park and a nice stretch of beach to walk along.
There is a small ferry boat that takes visitors from the Quay over to Mudeford Sandbank. Mudeford Quay is at the entrance to Christchurch harbour and is a popular place to go windsurfing and sailing.
Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door are popular landmarks along the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site in Dorset.
Lulworth Cove is close to the pretty village of West Lulworth and is a popular tourist spot all year round, with the busiest months being July and August.
The walk down from the car park at Lulworth to the cove is a pretty one with a handful of gift shops on the way, including the Heritage Centre and a fossil and gem shop.
The beach at Lulworth is a shingle one and dogs are allowed on it. We find it a fantastic beach to visit year round, the boys just take tall wellies in the winter so they can still get a bit of a paddle in!
The Boat Shed situated on Lulworth Cove is open year round offering hot drinks, light meals and snacks.
From the car park at Lulworth Cove you can walk to Durdle Door. They are about 1.5 to 2 miles apart and although the path way is well made it is steep and there are a number of steps as you ascend. It is not what I would consider a strenuous walk for the fit and able and children can manage it. Once you get to the top you are rewarded with yet more stunning views. You then walk down the steps to Durdle Door beach. If you don’t want to walk between Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door then there are car parks at both destinations.
Walking Britain have more details of the walk here.
Durdle Door Beach
The beach at Durdle Door is reached by climbing down a number of steps. The incredible natural limestone arch is an amazing geological wonder. The beach is shingle and it is suitable for swimming. When we went in the summer the water was a beautiful clear blue.
FACTS ABOUT LULWORTH COVE AND DURDLE DOOR
– They are both part of the Lulworth Estate which extends over 12,000 acres of the south Dorset countryside, which includes 5 miles of the Jurassic Coast.
– Lulworth Estate has been owned and managed by the Weld family since 1641.
– The Lulworth Estate opened up to tourists in the early twentieth century.
– Lulworth Estate is passionate about maintaining and encouraging a variety of habitats with the Estate. They proudly have more than 60% of British butterflies and even have one of their own, the Lulworth Skipper.
– Lulworth Estate produces 25,000,000 litres of milk each year, mainly for Marks & Spencer.
– The World Heritage Site (WHS) status was awarded by UNESCO in December 2001 with the site being formally opened by the Prince of Wales at Lulworth Cove in October 2002. As England’s first natural WHS it offers universal value to all mankind.
– The Cove at Lulworth was formed at the end of the last Ice Age.
– The stone arch at Durdle Door is well known all around the world. It was created about 10,000 years ago by the sea.
Accommodation in Lulworth and Durdle Door
There are a number of options if you want to stay in either Lulworth or near Durdle Door.
As we live close by we haven’t had a need to stay in any so we cannot vouch for any of these. We do however have plans to spend a long weekend camping at the Durdle Door Holiday Park this summer. We will report back when we have been!