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Oh we do love to be beside the seaside, especially when it’s only a 40-minute train ride away. With award-winning beaches and historical sites, it’s no wonder the Victorians loved this seaside town so much.

Walk along the promenade, stretch out on the sandy beach or take a leisurely cruise along the coast. If you’re after cheap thrills, the Shockwave speedboat takes you on a speedy trip over the sea. Still searching for your sea legs? A land train goes up and down the promenade and only costs around £3, a good way to see the coast if you’re feeling a little lazy or want to relive childhood train rides.

Boscombe beach is a 10-minute walk along the promenade; this recently regenerated area is perfect for a drink and a laze in the sun. If you’re feeling more energetic, be sure to take a surfing lesson from Sorted Surf School.

The sea isn’t the only attraction Bournemouth has to offer, though. Take a leisurely stroll through the gardens, play some crazy golf, or even watch live outdoor performances during the summer months. Walk a little further up and launch yourself into the sky on The Bournemouth Balloon, a hot-air balloon that flies you 500 feet into the sky. If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground (or the weather takes a turn) pop over to the Oceanarium.

If you fancy a change from Southampton nightlife, Bournemouth is a good town to try out. As a favourite night out for students from all over the South, it’s a great place to meet new people. Student hangouts are SixtyMillionPostcards, 176 and the Bournemouth branch of Orange Rooms.

If it’s live music you’re after, Bournemouth also offers some decent venues. The BIC, The Old Fire Station and the O2 Academy all attract major artists to their stage, and The Winchester offers a wide variety of musical and artistic entertainment.

When hunger hits, why not try Hot Rocks American burger bar near the seafront for the ultimate surfer restaurant. Aruba, a restaurant and bar located on the pier, offers the best view from any Bournemouth restaurant. The Mediterranean décor and menu could fool you into thinking you were on holiday, and the sea view is perfection.

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