Hengistbury Head Beach and Reserve
Telephone: 01202 451629
The Hengistbury Head Beach is a south facing sand and pebbled beach with relatively safe swimming, though with no lifeguard cover at any time and swimming near the cliffs is to be seriously avoided.
Paddling in the shallows however a bit further away is considered very safe and you will find plenty of families doing just that on sunny days.
Immediate vicinity amenities to the beach include modern accessible toilet block and a windsurf hire school! Naturally you must make arrangements with the school in advance if you wish to start learning or avail yourselves of their equipment, but with that added in this can be a pretty adventurous
The nearby Land Train purportedly runs every day of the year, except Christmas Day, and runs from the Hiker Cafe down to the Beach Cafe on Mudeford Spit. This is a pleasing way to get about and is ideal for those with little legs in tow, or those bringing grandparents along to the seaside with you, allowing you to explore further than on foot alone. There is enough space on board to store a few prams but in high summer this area is in demand so you'll have to be flexible!
The 162 hectares of Hengistbury Head Local Nature Reserve beside the beach incorporates an excellent variety of habitats including woodland, meadows, heathland, scrub, sand dunes, beach, estuary and saltmarsh, ensuring between them a huge spread of indigenous mini beasts and other wildlife. For kids into insects or birds you couldn't pick a better spot to explore!
There are superb views from the top of the Head towards the Isle of Wight and over 500 plant species and 300 species of birds have been recorded here. The site is grazed by huge Galloway cattle which are an exciting bonus spot in the distance for kids!
Also look out for the regular programme of guided walks that take place during the year, which range from bird watching to stargazing and will give you a ranger level insight into the area and it's intricacies.
Please note the address given for satnav purposes is for the golf club adjacent at which there is some public parking, with closer parking further on at the Solent Meads car park. There's also bus stops 5 minutes' walk away, so your choice!
Wibbly Wobbly Weblink
It may be worth checking out Hengistbury Head Beach and Reserve's website to see if there are any special events or seasonal fun things to do that may be going on during the day.
We do strongly suggest you contact Hengistbury Head Beach and Reserve before you set off on your family day out, just to make sure they are open and to confirm admission prices, as there is nothing worse than disappointed kids in the back of your car after a long journey.
2016 Opening Details:
Year round daylight access.
No lifeguard cover at any time.
Check out Sunny's Fish N Chips on Broadway, plus the awesome Giggi Gelateria on Burlington Arcade!
"i need a wee"
Loos can apparently be found at the Mudeford Ferry car park, but more certainly at the visitor centre which seems to have longer open hours.
Prices & Admission
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