Guide to Dorset's beaches

West Cliff Beach

West Cliff Beach

This long stretch of sand immediately to the west of Bournemouth's pier is one of the town's two main beaches. Stretching over a mile down to Durley Chine you'll still be lucky to find a quiet stretch of sand in the Summer months.

As you would expect with its proximity to Bournemouth there are no shortage facilities here, including an aquarium. So no shortage of things to do with the kids. The beach is backed by a promenade lined with beach huts. From here you can catch the "Land Train" which runs to Boscombe.

The gently sloping beach means bathing here is generally safe and the water is clean. During the summer months the KidZone scheme operates, providing a lost child service.

Type of beach


Lifeguard service

Seasonal lifeguard cover (May to September)

Dogs friendly beach?

Dogs allowed

dog friendly beaches »


The car park at the Bournemouth International Centre on the cliffs above is probably the closest. It holds 650 cars, 17 for disabled use.