Adjacent to Poole Harbour, the park covers an area of 110 acres, of which 60 include the park’s man-made lake and ponds. Attractions and activities of the park include two children’s play areas, tennis courts, windsurfing, kayaking, rowing and model yacht racing. On Saturday mornings, over 700 runners take part in the Parkrun – a free to enter, timed 5km race around the grounds.
Outside of London, Sandbanks is home to the largest selection of expensive properties in the UK. Renowned for its exclusivity, there was a time you could expect to see Harry and Jamie Redknapp, Tony Pulis, and Celia Sawyer walk the streets. Sandbanks’ waters (North Haven Lake), home to the Royal Yachting Association and an international sailing school, is also used to host water sports and events and light marina craft.
Owned by the National Trust, Corfe Castle stands above the village of the same name and dates back to the 11th century. Built by William the Conqueror, and receiving over 200,000 visitors to date, it is no surprise this building is deemed a nationally important historic building, which has been given protection against unauthorised change.
All ages and abilities can become bouldering experts at The Project Climbing Centre. Dedicated staff are always on hand to deliver a Bouldering Induction Course for the beginners, offer a few handy tips for the intermediates…or just to sign the paperwork, if you’re already a competent climber!
The Old Town
Retaining its 17th-century beauty, Poole’s Old Town offers a variety of things to do and places to visit. As you transport yourself back in time and make your way through the narrow streets, smuggler’s passages and alleys of Poole’s old town, make sure you drop into the Waterfront Museum, before reaching the stunning Poole Quay…
A great selection of bars, restaurants and cafés sit amidst historical buildings, creating a perfect setting to watch the sunseeker yachts moor up. A massive renovation, and the addition of some stylish developments, has cemented our opinion that Poole Quay is the perfect mix between the historical and the modern.
Spare 90 minutes of your day and experience the beauty of Poole Quay, Brownsea Island, Sandbanks, Studland, Old Harry Rocks and Dancing Ledge! You’ll be provided with free protective, waterproof clothing a lifejacket, as well as goggles, allowing you to enjoy this 12-seater Rib journey, even when you start to hit some serious speeds!
‘Lushies’ will know just how much passion goes into making the unique bath bombs and products of Lush. Giant ‘rhythm’ blenders mix powders with fragrance, colour and fresh ingredients, before being pressed into the desired mould, ready for you to pop in store and add to your basket! Currently around 70% of Lush products are approved by the Vegan Society, and 100% of the range is approved by the Vegetarian Society too!
Another National Trust treasure, Brownsea island is full of wildilfe and history. In the Victorian era, pottery was produced there and, during World War II, the island was used as a decoy to protect the Harbour. Nowadays, you can sit back and enjoy the stunning views, discover walks, have picnics, visit the Open Air Theatre and take part in activity weekends, all completely undisturbed by traffic!
Rick Stein’s restaurant sits proudly opposite Sandbanks beach, offering you ‘Fresh seafood, simply cooked’. Start your day right with an early morning walk, bring your good boy/girl into the bar with you, and enjoy fresh coffee and cakes from 10am onwards. After reading through the à la carte menu, we can’t blame you for wanting to give the wonderful, newly-caught crab, salmon, sea bass and mackerel a try. You’ll find the evenings just as inviting, as the fine selection of cocktails & champagne begins to flow!
Walk, bike or even segway your way around Upton Country Park’s 140 acres of open parkland, shoreline, woodlands and formal gardens. Take part in the 5km Park Run, photography workshops, give pétanque a go, browse and purchase plants in the Plant Centre, refuel and rehydrate at the park’s delightful tea rooms and let the children burn some of that energy off on the Woodland Trail. The beautiful, grade II listed, Georgian-style Upton House is also available for weddings and private hire!