Written by Olivia Beazley
MA Radio Production
One of the best things about coming to study in Bournemouth is the location. You’re right on the coast, in a beautiful part of the world in a lively town that has plenty to offer. Whether you want a club, culture, or natural beauty, there’ll be something for everyone. Hopefully, you’ll have a great time exploring, but to start you off, here are my top ten things to do in Bournemouth…
- Have fish and chips on the beach
Bournemouth is famed for its long sandy beaches stretching for miles in both directions. In rain or shine, a stroll along the beautiful seafront is always a good way to destress from work, enjoy the sunshine with friends, or simply pass the time. Right on the beach by the pier is Harry Ramsden’s, which is everything you’d expect from traditional English fish and chips. This is a great place for international students to visit if you want to experience typical UK culture!
- Go for a pizza at Da Mario’s
This slightly out of the way little restaurant is a hidden gem. It’s an authentic Italian family-run place with a friendly, warm atmosphere, and the most amazing handmade pizza. I went here in my first week in Bournemouth and it’s become a favourite. Highly recommended.
- Take in the view at Durdle Door or Old Harry Rocks
Not strictly in Bournemouth, but really worth a visit one weekend or when family come to visit. These amazing natural rock formations are a bit of a bus journey, but the views are truly breath-taking. There are also some picturesque villages and cosy pubs around, which are perfect for a post-walk pint.
- See a play at the Mary Shelley Theatre in Boscombe
This Victorian theatre has a dilapidated charm. Its beautiful original features and seemingly constant state of disrepair gives it an ethereal, other worldly quality. It’s the perfect setting for an evening at the theatre, and makes a refreshing change from student bars and clubs.
- A cocktail (or several) at Turtle Bay
This Caribbean restaurant and cocktail bar is a great place to go for a celebration. With its delicious food and central location, it’s well worth getting dressed up for.
- Relax in the Lower Gardens
Of all the green spaces in Bournemouth, the Lower Gardens (complete with mini golf course, iconic hot air balloon, and friendly squirrels) are my favourite. From the charming winter ice rink, to the summer ice creams, the lower gardens have something to offer all year round.
- Visit Aruba Bar
If it’s a warm evening you can just about convince yourself you’re on holiday; this restaurant/bar/club is about as beachside as it gets. A cocktail on the roof terrace and you may as well be in the Mediterranean.
- Discover a new band at 60 million Postcards
If you fancy some live music, a burger and a wall full of postcards – and why wouldn’t you? – this quirky bar with outdoor area is perfect for an evening out.
- See who’s playing at the B.I.C.
Keep an eye on who’s playing at the world famous Bournemouth International Centre. There’s a huge range of artists and bands playing this 10,000 capacity venue, and it’s just on your doorstep.
- Stroll along the pier
It’s not quite as big as Brighton, but Bournemouth Pier still gives that quaint English seaside feel. With the attractions, zip wire, and stunning views, there are worse places to while away a Saturday.
By Olivia Beazley