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Bournemouth

Trip Planner Europe  /  UK  /  England  /  Dorset  /  Bournemouth
(3.9/5 based on 16,000+ reviews for top 30 attractions)
Things to do: beaches, parks, zoos & aquariums
Bournemouth is a large coastal resort town on the south coast of England directly to the east of the Jurassic Coast, a 155km World Heritage Site. According to the 2011 census, the town has a population of 183,491 making it the largest settlement in Dorset. With Poole to the west and Christchurch in the east, Bournemouth forms the South East Dorset conurbation, which has a total population of over 465,000.Before it was founded in 1810 by Lewis Tregonwell, the area was a deserted heathland occasionally visited by fishermen and smugglers. Initially marketed as a health resort, the town received a boost when it appeared in Dr Granville's book, The Spas of England. Bournemouth's growth really accelerated with the arrival of the railway and it became a recognised town in 1870. Historically part of Hampshire, it joined Dorset with the reorganisation of local government in 1974. Since 1997, the town has been administered by a unitary authority, giving it autonomy from Dorset County Council although it remains part of the ceremonial county. The local council is Bournemouth Borough Council.
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Where to stay

For a relaxing experience near Bournemouth's major attractions, book your rooms at a "country house" hotel in the very heart of this picturesque coastal town. Located inside heritage-rich buildings, these hotels are renowned for their luxurious rooms, excellent customer service, and outstanding contemporary cuisine. As a more affordable but no less comfortable option, consider staying at one of many boutique hotels, which feature modern bistros with indoor and outdoor seating, and menus that source fresh ingredients from local suppliers.
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