Things to do in
Poole

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Our most recommended things to do in Poole

From Poole: 2-Hour Jurassic Coastal Cruise

1. From Poole: 2-Hour Jurassic Coastal Cruise

Begin your trip at Poole Harbour and board an open deck boat fitted with seating and comfortable saloons. From here, you will be taken on a journey through 185 million years of history along the Jurassic Coastline. On your cruise pass a number of Dorset's most famous landmarks like the golden beaches of Sandbanks, Brownsea Island, and the Old Harry Rocks, named after a notorious pirate. Enjoy expert commentary from your captains as you glide by. Once reaching Swanage, head back towards Poole and capture the perfect picture of the famous chalk formations from the boat's outer deck.

Poole Harbor and Islands Cruise

2. Poole Harbor and Islands Cruise

Take a cruise around Europe's largest natural harbor, home to the town of Poole, the golden beaches of Sandbanks and Brownsea Island. From either open deck seating or comfortable saloon you will see stunning views of the exceptional landscape that surrounds it. Your 70 minute trip will start on charming Poole Quay with its old buildings and buzzing atmosphere.  Next you will go past Brownsea Island, home to wildlife and picturesque Brownsea Castle, built to protect against French invasions. After that comes the Sandbanks Peninsula and the luxurious houses of the ‘Golden Mile’. Then you will tour the great natural expanse of the harbor and the remaining islands: Green, Furzey, Long and Round. Fronting onto beautiful scenery it helped inspire classics like Lord of the Rings and Gulliver's Travel. 

From Bournemouth: Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door Trip

3. From Bournemouth: Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door Trip

Discover some of the most scenic coastline in southern England on a bus trip from Bournemouth. Travel along the famous Jurassic Coast, via Poole Harbour and Sandbanks, to experience the nation's only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit both Lulworth Cove and the natural limestone arch of Durdle Door and get plenty of information and maps to help you along the way. Use the time to go for a light nature walk from Durdle Door over the hill to Lulworth Cove and get magnificent views from Hambury Tout. Spend the time at Lulworth Cove if you prefer to give your legs a rest and get a beautiful view of the arch on an optional boat ride from the beach, at your own expense. Benefit from a map highlighting the main features, or feel free to follow your own nose and explore independently. Find a nice cafe or restaurant in the village of West Lulworth or avail of the small shop in the holiday park at Durdle Door.

Bournemouth: Seaside Hop-on Hop-off Tour

4. Bournemouth: Seaside Hop-on Hop-off Tour

Experience the beautiful British coastline with the Bournemouth hop-on hop-off tour. Ride an open-top double-decker tour bus on a 1.5-hour loop through the Dorset coastline to discover the beautiful seaside towns of Bournemouth and Poole. Stop at Poole Quay and explore the variety of shops, parks, restaurants, and theatres, as well as buzzing nightlife. The onboard commentary points out the main sights and attractions of each city, all accessible from the 22 conveniently located stops along the bus route. There are plenty of things to do in Bournemouth and Poole. A double-decker bus is a perfect way to explore the picturesque British seaside and the phenomenal beaches, parks, and shops of Bournemouth and Poole are all easily accessible from the tour route's wandering path down the coastline. Bournemouth Tour Stops: 1. Bournemouth Pier - Behind Hot Rocks 2. Bournemouth Square - Gervis Place Stand X 3. West Cliff Savoy Hotel 4. Westbourne - Camden 5. Branksome Chine 6. Canford Cliffs - Loch Fyne 7. Sandbanks Beach - Shore Road - Tesco 8. Sandbanks Beach - Main Car Park 9. Sandbanks Peninsular - Panorama Road 10. Sandbanks Beach - Harbour Side 11. Sandbanks Beach - Harbour Side opposite Tesco 12. Lilliput Village - Lilliput Square 13. Whitecliff - Whitecliff Recreation Ground 14. Poole Park - Opposite Civic Centre 15. Poole Quay & Old Town - Thistle Hotel 16. Poole Railway Station - Platform 2 Exit Ramp 17. Poole Park - Parkstone Road by Parade of Shops 18. Ashley Cross - Parkstone Railway Station 19. Penn Hill - Penn Hill Corner 20. Westbourne - Opposite The Porterhouse 21. The Triangle - Bournemouth Central Library 22. Bournemouth Square - Moon on the Square (drop off only)23. Bournemouth Pier - Behind Hot Rocks (drop off only)

Poole Harbour Lights Cruise

5. Poole Harbour Lights Cruise

Experience a relaxing evening cruise around Poole Harbour. Sail from the Poole Quay around the harbor, close to Brownsea Island and its castle, and the luxurious properties on Sandbanks. Relax, unwind and watch the sun go down while you learn about the surrounding islands and more from your captain through their live commentary. While onboard, enjoy a drink from the fully licensed bar and take in the beautiful scenery of Europe’s largest natural Harbour before returning to Poole Quay where you can enjoy the rest of your evening in one of many great restaurants or bars.

From Bournemouth: Jurassic Coast & Isle of Purbeck Day Tour

6. From Bournemouth: Jurassic Coast & Isle of Purbeck Day Tour

Catch the early morning ferry across to the Isle of Purbeck. View Old Harry Rocks, the starting point of the Jurassic Coast, England’s only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take in breath-taking views across Poole Harbour and towards Brownsea Island. By mid morning you will arrive at Durlston Country Park. Visit the brand new Jurassic Coast visitor center housed in the recently refurbished Durlston Castle. There’s time for a morning coffee stop overlooking the famous Great Globe and a chance to take the cliff top walk along to Tilly Whim Caves and the Anvil Point Lighthouse. For every visitor brought to Durlston Country Park, a contribution towards a bursary that helps to support their volunteer programme is made. Heading west drive through some of the tiny lanes and villages that give Purbeck its unique character. Take lunch in the village of Corfe Castle, dominated by the ruins that give it its name. Entrance to the castle itself not included (Free to NT members). After lunch take a gentle drive along the coast taking in more stunning scenery as you head for an afternoon at Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door. Walk down to Man o’ War Rocks and view the magnificent rock arch of Durdle Door, hewn from the Portland limestone beds. Finally, head down to Lulworth Cove and see the famous Lulworth Crumple rock formation in Stair Hole.

Bournemouth: Hop-on Hop-off Open-Top Bus Tour

7. Bournemouth: Hop-on Hop-off Open-Top Bus Tour

Your Bournemouth hop-on, hop-off bus ticket will ensure you get to explore the area with comfort and ease. Sit back and let your driver do the hard work as you are taken on a journey around the must-see sights of Bournemouth, Poole and the famous peninsular Sandbanks. Hop off at any one of the 24 stops on route to take a closer look at the sights around you. Check out Poole harbour, the largest natural harbour in Europe, with rich maritime history, award winning beaches and lush green gardens. Or take some time to explore the coastline of Bournemouth, and try some English delicacies in between stops. While you tour the areas, we provide on-board commentary for your entertainment and to help you discover the unique and intriguing stories behind the sights.

Poole: Harbor Dinner Cruise with Traditional Fish and Chips

8. Poole: Harbor Dinner Cruise with Traditional Fish and Chips

Spend an evening cruising along the southern British coastline while enjoying a traditional fish and chips dinner. Relax as you admire the beauty of Poole, Europe's largest natural harbor, and the surrounding shore. Snap a few photos of the monumental chalk formations of Old Harry Rocks, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, marking the most eastern point of the ancient Jurassic Coast. Pass by Studland Bay, which is famous for wildlife and watersports and also served as the inspiration for children's book author, Enid Blyton's Noddy. Get a glimpse of the luxury beachfront properties and popular beaches along Sandbanks Golden Mile.

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What people are saying about Poole

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 741 reviews

It was a lovely cruise in nice weather and interesting sites and the beautiful rocks of old Harry on the way , the boat was clean and spacious and the commentary was funny & informative

Very enjoyable with stunning scenery around the islands in Poole Harbour and informative commentary. Recommend going.

Best £12 we have ever spent. What a lovely trip that we will do on a regular basis.

Cruise was good with good knowledge of the history narrated by the drive

It was an excellent and informative trip, even for us as local people