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  • Writer's pictureNeverland London

Explore The Memorable Boscombe Pier: All You Need to Know in 2023

Updated: Jul 4, 2023

Boscombe pier at Dusk

Boscombe Pier, located near the bustling Bournemouth Pier, is not your ordinary seaside destination. With its contemporary design, musical instruments lining the pier, and an array of attractions and dining options, it’s a place that promises a memorable experience for visitors of all ages.

Are you ready to explore this unique coastal gem?

Boscombe Pier
Boscombe Beach encompasses both sides of the pier. The beach on the right extends all the way to Bournemouth and tends to be quieter.

Short Summary

  • Explore Boscombe Pier for modern design, attractions and dining options.

  • Variety of parking options with payment methods available.

  • Beach access, lifeguard services and nearby attractions/events offered year round.

Discovering Boscombe Pier

Historical Boscombe Pier

Since its official opening on July 28th, 1889, Boscombe Pier has been a popular visitor attraction, drawing crowds with its amusements and picturesque surroundings.

The modern design, developed by Archibald Smith and later managed by the local council, features several beautiful musical instruments lining the pier for children and adults to enjoy.

As you wander along the pier, you’ll find a variety of simple attractions to keep you entertained, such as fishing opportunities, musical instruments and sightseeing, but for us, it's the action around the pier that makes this part of Bournemouth Beach worth visiting.

Pier Attractions

Boscombe Pier, located near (30 mins walk) to the famous Bournemouth Pier, offers an array of attractions to suit everyone’s interests in the pier area.

The entrance to the pier is filled with amusement arcade games for fun-seekers, while those looking for a more relaxed experience can enjoy the fishing and sightseeing opportunities from the end of the pier, where the viewing and fishing platforms, constructed in 2008, offer stunning views of the surrounding sea.

The local council has invested heavily in the area and has made sure there’s never a dull moment at this vibrant pier. With regular events and activities, there’s something for everyone to enjoy, whether you’re looking for a fun day out with the family or a romantic evening stroll.

Hungry from all the fresh sea air? Don’t worry; there are plenty of dining options available at Boscombe Pier, including the lovely Urban Reef Restaurant

Urban Reef Restaurant

Urban Reef Restaurant

One of the highlights of Boscombe Pier is the Urban Reef Restaurant, a beachfront bar, cafe, and restaurant established in 2009.

Owned by Shepherd Neame, this popular dining spot offers delicious food and breathtaking views of the South Coast.

Urban Reef Restaurant

Savour a diverse menu featuring seasonal produce and locally sourced ingredients as you take in the stunning panoramas of the sea.

It’s the perfect place to unwind after a day of exploring the Pier’s attractions.

Boscombe Pier Beach: Access and Facilities

Boscombe Pier Beach offers excellent access and facilities for visitors. The beach is equipped with a car park, toilets, disabled access, a cafe/shop, deck chair hire, and lifeguard services during the summer months, making it an ideal destination for a fun-filled day at the seaside.

At the beach, you'll find volleyball nets, large boulders for climbing, slacklining and table tennis zones. There are also paddle boards, kayaks, surfboards, and wetsuits available for rent. If you're interested in learning, Sorted Surf School offers lessons as well.

Boscome Water Quality

Good News: The water quality is MCS Recommended and is European-designated bathing water.

Boscome land train service runs the length of the seafront.

Bournemouth Land Train

All aboard! Jump on one of Bournemouth's famous land trains, the best way to discover the beautiful beaches.

Simply sit back and enjoy the seafront scenery as you're whisked along the Bournemouth promenade.

The brightly coloured fleet including Flotsam and Jetsam will take you to and from:

  • Bournemouth Pier (West) to Branksome Chine, stopping at Durley Chine and Alum Chine and

  • Bournemouth Pier (East) to Boscombe, stopping at Toft Zig Zag (drop off only).

Prices start from £4 per adult for one journey. Trains feature accessible facilities for wheelchair users and well-behaved dogs are welcome. Route maps and timetables are available at each stop.

Additionally, the Boscombe Beach office provides further assistance and information for visitors.

In the following subsections, we will explore the lifeguard services and beach hut rentals available at Boscombe Pier Beach, managed by Bournemouth Borough Council.

Lifeguard Services

Boscombe Beach Lifeguards

Safety is a top priority at Boscombe Pier Beach, which is why lifeguard services are provided during the summer season to ensure visitors can enjoy the beach with peace of mind.

RNLI lifeguard stations can be found on both sides of the pier, operating from May to September, so you can swim and relax on the beach knowing that help is nearby if needed.

For families with young children, it's important to note that the monitored section of the beach is between the two red and yellow flags. This is the designated area where lifeguards are present, but please be aware that this service is only available from May to September.

Beach Huts and Rentals

Boscombe Pier Beach Huts to Rent

For those looking to enhance their beach experience, Boscombe Pier Beach offers beach hut rentals. These charming huts come equipped with three deckchairs, a gas ring, and a bottle, providing a comfortable and convenient spot to relax and enjoy the seaside.

Make the most of your day at the sandy beach by renting one of these picturesque huts for a truly memorable experience.

Dog-Friendly Beaches Near Boscombe Pier

While dogs are not permitted on the main beach near Boscombe Pier between May 1st and September 30th, there are several dog-friendly beaches in the vicinity where your furry friend can enjoy the sand and sea.

Boscome Pier Dog Friendly Beach Map

In the following subsection, we will highlight nearby dog friendly beaches for those looking to bring their four-legged companion along their seaside adventure.

Nearby Dog-Friendly Beaches

Dog owners will be happy to know that there are several dog-friendly beaches near Boscombe Pier, such as Fisherman’s Walk, Alum Chine, Middle Chine, and Hengistbury Head, which all allow dogs between May 1 and September 30.

Additionally, all beaches in the area permit dogs from October 1 to April 30, providing plenty of opportunities for your canine companion to enjoy the beach throughout the year.

Water Sports and Activities

Boscombe Pier, managed by the Boscombe Pier Company, is a haven for water sports enthusiasts, offering a wide range of activities to suit all skill levels and interests. From kayaking and sailing to surfing, the Pier Head has something for everyone.

In the following subsection, we will explore surf schools and rental shops near the pier for those looking to ride the waves.

Surf Schools and Rental Shops

Surf Lessons at Boscombe Pier

Whether you’re a seasoned surfer or a complete beginner, there are several surf schools and rental shops near Boscombe Pier to cater to your needs. Sorted Surf Shop and Sorted Surf School are two popular options in the area, providing lessons and equipment for all ages and abilities.

For those looking to try something different, Surf Steps, situated on Bournemouth beach, offers additional water sports options just 500 meters from Boscombe Pier.

Nearby Attractions and Events

The area around Boscombe Pier is not only home to the pier itself but also boasts a variety of attractions and events for visitors to enjoy. From museums and galleries to festivals and other exciting events, there’s always something happening around the Pier.

In the following subsections, we will explore local museums and galleries, as well as upcoming events in the area.

Local Museums and Galleries

Russel Cotes House

If you’re looking to explore the rich history and culture of the area, there are several museums and galleries near Boscombe Pier that are well worth a visit.

Bournemouth Natural Science Society, and Red House Museum and Gardens all offer fascinating collections and exhibits for you to discover.

Russel Cotes Museum

Each of these establishments provides a unique insight into the local area and its heritage, making them a must-visit for any history or art enthusiast.

Upcoming Events

Bournemouth Air Show

There’s never a dull moment around Boscombe Pier, with a variety of events and festivals taking place throughout the year. Some of the upcoming events in the area include the Bournemouth Beach Festival, the Dorset Food Festival, and the Boscombe Arts Festival.

Looking for something more thrilling? The annual Bournemouth Air Festival, featuring aerial displays and ground activities, is a spectacular event not to be missed.

Accommodation Near Boscombe Pier

Finding the perfect accommodation near Boscombe Pier is easy, with a wide range of options available to suit all tastes and budgets. From hotels and guesthouses to self-catering options, you’re sure to find the perfect place to rest your head after a day of exploring the Pier and its surroundings.

In the following subsections, we will delve into the various accommodation options available near Boscombe Pier.

Hotels and Guesthouses

There are numerous hotels and guesthouses near Boscombe Pier, catering to all preferences and budgets. Some of the many, many options include Seaview Victorian Splendour, Pebble Bay, Bijou Residence, all offering comfortable rooms and a range of amenities to make your stay enjoyable.

With so many choices available, you’re sure to find the perfect hotel or guesthouse to suit your needs.

Self-Catering Options

For those looking for a more independent and flexible stay, there are a variety of excellent self-catering options available near Boscombe Pier. Ranging from holiday rentals and cottages to apartments, these accommodations offer all the comforts of home while still being close to the action.

Be sure to check websites like TripAdvisor and HomeToGo for a wide selection of self-catering options near the pier.

Dining Options Around Boscombe Pier

With a diverse selection of dining options around Boscombe Pier, you’ll never be short on choices when it comes to satisfying your hunger. From seafood and local produce to casual eateries, there’s something to suit every palate.

In the following subsections, we will explore the various dining options available near the pier, ensuring you’ll be well-fed during your visit.

Seafood and Local Produce

For those with a taste for seafood and locally sourced produce, there are several dining establishments near Boscombe that are sure to impress. Sobo Fish (7 mins drive), Chez Fred (Fish and Chips - 10 mins drive), The Crab Restaurant and Bar all offer mouth-watering seafood dishes.

Other options further afield like The Beach Hut, The Fisherman’s Catch, and The Beachcomber also serve delicious local fare. Indulge in the freshest flavours of the sea and savour the best that the region has to offer, including a visit to the nearby beach shops.

The Overstrand - Casual Eateries

If you’re in the mood for a more relaxed dining experience, there are plenty of casual eateries and pubs around Boscombe Pier to choose from.

All offer a wide variety of cuisines and atmospheres, ensuring there’s something for everyone.

So whether you’re craving traditional pub food or wood-fired pizza, you’ll find the perfect spot to satisfy your hunger.

Parking Options at Boscombe Pier

If you’re planning to visit Boscombe Pier by car, you’ll be pleased to know that there are several parking options available, including on-street, off-street, private garages, and parking meters.

In the following subsections, we will delve into the payment methods and charges for parking near the pier, ensuring a hassle-free experience for your visit.

Payment Methods

To make your parking experience as convenient as possible, Boscombe Pier Parking offers multiple payment methods. You can pay for parking by phone, app, or card.

Simply call the Boscombe Pier Office on 01202 123 800 to make a payment by phone, or use the Parking App to complete the transaction. Both debit and credit cards are accepted for payment.

Opening Times and Charges

Parking near Boscombe Pier is available 24 hours a day, with charges varying depending on the location and duration of your stay. For example, the Boscombe Overstrand car park charges £2.50 for up to 1 hour, £5 for up to 2 hours, £6.20 for up to 3 hours, and £7.50 for up to 4 hours, while the daily parking price at the pier itself is £4.00.

Be sure to check the specific charges and opening times for your preferred parking area to avoid surprises.


From its unique design and attractions to the wide range of dining options and nearby accommodations, Boscombe Pier is truly a gem on the South Coast. With so much to see and do, it’s no wonder this pier has remained a popular visitor attraction for over a century.

So why not pack your bags, grab the sunscreen, and head to Boscombe Pier for a memorable seaside adventure?

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have to pay to go to Boscombe Pier?

Boscombe Pier is free to visit and explore, with a heritage trail and viewing platform located at the end of the pier. So you can explore without worrying about costs.

What happened to Boscombe Pier?

Boscombe Pier has had a turbulent history, having been breached for defence reasons during World War II and then undergoing complete reconstruction in reinforced concrete before finally re-opening twenty years later. These events have shaped the pier’s modern status as a popular leisure destination on the South Coast.

Are dogs allowed on Boscombe Pier?

Yes, dogs are allowed on Boscombe Pier from 1 October to 30 April, however, they must be kept on a lead at all times.

To ensure the safety and comfort of everyone, owners must pick up after their pets and keep them in control.

How much does it cost to park on Boscombe seafront?

For parking on the Boscombe seafront, you can expect to pay £2.80 for up to 1 hour and prices increase for longer periods of time up to a maximum of £11.70 for up to 6 hours.

This makes it an affordable option for those who want to spend a few hours at the beach or explore the local area.

How long is Boscombe pier?

Boscombe Pier was built in 1867 and is 838 feet long, making it one of the UK's oldest seaside piers still standing today.

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