Adventures around Bournemouthwith PlusBus

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Coastal views and fresh-brewed coffee; palm trees and pre-Raphaelite beauties… Bournemouth has a wealth of lovely things to discover, all within a short bus ride of the station. When you buy your train ticket, simply add on a full day’s unlimited bus travel with a PlusBus ticket; it’s valid on the open-topped bus to Sandbanks and all the regular services around the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole. Here are just three of the hundreds of adventures you could have with a PlusBus ticket in Bournemouth.

  • County: with PlusBus
  • Great for: art galleries | beaches | flowers and gardens | markets | scenic bus |
  • Refreshments: lots of fabulous restaurants, pubs and cafes
  • Please note: researched/updated in December 2023. If anything’s changed or you have more tips to share, do get in touch:
  1. 3. Gardens and wooded valleys

    The PlusBus ticket will get you all the way to Christchurch Priory or to Upton Country Park on the northern shore of Poole Harbour, but it’s also handy for exploring Bournemouth’s wooded chines (valleys) and subtropical Victorian town gardens.

    • The Grade II-listed Upper, Central, and Lower Gardens run through the centre of town and were designed in the nineteenth century. With flowerbeds, smooth lawns, tall trees and the little River Bourne running through them, these linear gardens make an idyllic stroll. Lots of buses stop beside the Lower Gardens on Westover Road, including frequent buses M1 and M2 from the railway station.
    • Another beautiful walk that it’s hard to believe is so close to the town centre is the couple-of-miles’ stroll down leafy Alum Chine. Chine is a Dorset word meaning a deep valley, once carved by a stream of river heading down towards the sea. Start from the colourful Westbourne area, with its elegant arcade. Several buses, including the open-topped bus 50, buses M1 and M2 stop at Westbourne Post Office.
    • Patisserie, lingerie, quirky cards and artisanal bakes, balls of wool in the chemist and energy balls in the coffee merchant’s: there’s plenty to explore among the independent shops and cafés of Westbourne. Once you’re ready to set off, stroll down Alum Chine Road, head left into West Cliff Road and soon right along the tarmac path that leads down the valley, under high bridges and beech trees. Look out for squirrels, scampering through the branches and over the paths!
    • Where the valley meets the beach, you can detour left into a 1920s Tropical Garden, where paths zig-zag down the cliff through yucca, bamboo and eucalyptus. From here, you could walk along the beach to the seafront Chineside cafe. From here, you can climb up Durley Chine Steps and up through the Scots pines to Durley Gardens. You can pick up bus 50 again from the end of the road back to the railway station. Look out (from the open top deck if it’s fine) for gardens and elegant buildings, including the tall spire of St Peter’s church.
  1. Discover more offers and days out in Dorset with Good Journey. For more money-saving tips see our handy guides to trains and buses.