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How I planned my 2 day trip to Bournemouth

How I planned my 2 day trip to Bournemouth

The following simple points will help you plan a 1 night or 2 day Bournemouth trip. For more and detailed information, please see the article below the following ponts:

1. Book hotel from here

2. Book bus tickets from here (starting point - london Victoria and End Point Bournemouth Pier)

3. Go to London Victoria coach station (departures)

4. Search your coarch service on the display board and walk to the gate from where your coach will depart. Queue up, and then take a seat in the coach which will drop you at Bournemouth Pier stop. Postcode - roughly BH2 5AA.

5. Walk to hotel. Postcode of hotel - BH2 5HL.

6. Check in

7. Order food online to your hotel or walk and get it from Indian Ocean [4 West Cliff Road Bournemouth, Dorset BH2 5EY - 01202 311222] or Cristallo [3 West Cliff Road, Bournemouth BH2 5ES - 01202 556767 ] or order online from the link mentioned in the beginning of point 7.

8. Visit places and do things (see last paragraph of the below article)

9. Return to the hotel in the evening. Rest, eat(see point 7) and sleep.

10. Breakfast at hotel or eat out or you could make your own sandwiches in your hotel room.

11. Checkout

13. See point 8.

12. Book a cheap single room if required. Search for "However there was a problem" and read that paragraph for more information.

13. In the evening, leave and walk to coach station. See pont 4 for address.

14. Catch coach and return to London.

There were only 2 weeks left for my parent's stay in London to finish. This time I couldn't show them around much as they had come in winter and my Mum couldn't walk much. But the main reason being the weather in winter was not very nice. But by the time they had spent about 5 months in London, it was spring and the weather had got better. So, I decided to take them to beachside. Since I and my dad had already been to Brighton the last time he had come here and since public transport to the beaches in South East England, like Broadstairs etc was a bit confusing, I decided to take them to Bournemouth.

I checked the weather a few days before the travel day. It was showing Saturday and Sunday sunny. I had to plan the journey in such a way that My mum wouldn't have to walk much. Since the train tickets from London to Bournemouth were expensive compared to the coach tickets, I booked 4 return tickets through National Express about 4 days before the travel day. So, the tickets were from Stratford Broadway stop E to Bournemouth pier. I purposely chose Bournemouth Pier over Bournemouth as the Bournemouth Pier stop seemed very close to the beach. So, if my Mum decided to come to the beach she wouldn't have to walk much. I got the 4 return coach tickets for £90. Out starting point was Ilford/Manor Park. So we had the option of taking either bus 25 or 86 to Stratford Broadway stop E. Our coach journey began from stop E. from stop E at 8:40 AM we took a coach to London Victoria coach station (arrived at 09:30). Then from Victoria coach station we took the coach to Bournemouth Pier at 10:00 AM. The 4 tickets worth £90 covered the whole coach Journey apart from the local bus journey (via bus 25 or 86). The whole journey went smoothly and our coach reached Bournemouth Pier at about 12:35. There was a toilet at the back of the coach. The big luggage bags are stored in the side part of the coach before entering the coach and there is little space inside the coach above the seats to store small luggage. It is best to remove food and water that one will consume during the journey from lighter luggage brought inside the coach before placing the luggage in the space provided above the seats because it becomes a bit difficult to remove the bags from those tight spaces once the bus is moving.

We were actually going to get off at the stop before Bournemouth Pier which was Bournemouth as all the passengers but about 2-3 had got off there. So, I got confused thinking it was the last stop. After checking with the driver, it was confirmed that the last stop was Bournemouth Pier and I had booked that on my ticket. The stop is nothing but a small loop on the side of the road where buses stop and start. It is important to remember that coaches start and stop from the same loop. So while returning we didn't have to cross the road and wait at the stop next to the Hermitage Hotel. We had to wait at the same stop where we got off, which is at the opposite side of the road of hotel Hermitage. The postcode of the stop is roughly BH2 5AA and it can be found on google by searching "Bournemouth pier stop CC".

So, I used the postcode BH2 5AA to find hotels close to it. I booked 2 premium double rooms (with nice sea views) at Hotel Riviera [Hotel Riviera West Cliff Gardens, Bournemouth, Dorset - BH2 5HL] . It was for £70 each. Standard double rooms were for £60 each. However, probably the rates might be changing depending on the time of the year and other factor. It was about 12 minute's walk from the National express Bournemouth pier stop. Mind you there was a small patch of uphill on that path but that was easily walkable by an average healthy person. My mum took breaks but walked.

The location of the hotel was very good. There large green garden like area just in front of the hotel where seats were present to just sit and enjoy the beautiful view. When we went there was a lot of scaffolding but it did not block the view. The staff was nice and friendly. He gave us some nice options to choose the rooms from. We chose 2 double rooms next to each other on the 2nd floor. There was a lift in the hotel building so Mum didn't have to climb the stairs. Rooms were nice and clean with attached private bath tubs and toilets, flat screen TV, hair dryer, wardrobe, tables with drawers and chairs in case you wanted to eat in, kettle, tea, sugar, milk, steel spoons etc. to make tea. When asked for plates they refused politely but offered cutlery. The free breakfast next day morning was served between 08:30 and 09:30 in the basement (floor below ground level). It was nice and clean and well presented. It wasn't a buffet or self-service system. We just sat and the concerned person got food for us. There was tea/coffee and cornflakes with milk and orange juice as starters. And after that full English breakfast with 1 sausage, 2 beacons, fried bread and toasted bread, different jams and butter, 2 fried eggs, 2 grilled half tomatoes, baked beans etc. For the previous day lunch, we got a takeaway from an Indian restaurant called Indian Ocean [4 West Cliff Road Bournemouth, Dorset BH2 5EY - 01202 311222] which was just about 5 minutes' walk from the hotel. The food was not bad. On our request the waiter also gave us 4 plastic plates and spoons! At night I ordered food online from here - Order food online in Bournemouth.

Though in my online booking, the checkout time was mentioned as 8 AM, the actual check out time was 11 AM. So, after the finish of breakfast at about 09:30, we had about 1 and half hours to wrap up. However there was a problem. We were going to checkout at 11 AM but our return coach was at 19:00 hrs. I was worried about mum as she couldn't spend so much time walking or even sitting somewhere, outside. The time was about 10:45 and we had received a call from the reception asking us to get ready within 15 minutes. So, I quickly went down stairs and requested the Manager and another guy, who I thought was the owner of the hotel about my Mum staying in some not booked /unoccupied room for a few more hours. But as expected and understandably both of them refused politely. He said he could give me a cheap room for about £40. But I thought that's not worth just a few hours of stay in the room. While I was heading back upstairs to get the stuff downstairs to checkout, the other guy (probably owner) said with a smile, "I'll give you 5 more minutes. If you are late we will have to charge you another day's rent". I didn't like what he said as I had made it very clear to him about us being completely ready with our stuff beforehand. I'd gone down just to make the above mentioned request. However, when we had returned the keys and when we were walking outside the hotel, he came running towards us and calling us "Hello...hello". He came to us and said that he won't be able to give us the room for free but if we wanted we could keep our stuff in the hotel so we didn't have to carry it while we were site seeing. That was kind of him and we thanked him for that. But we didn't choose that option.  

So, we thought of putting mum into any one of the many beach huts we had seen along the beach. But we found out that most of them were private and the ones on rent were reluctant to let it just for a few hours. The ones available for rent were locked and had mentioned the contact number on them. So, now, the other options were making mum sit on one of the open or shaded benches outside or book a cheap hotel room. The bench option was practically not feasible.

So, I quickly looked for cheap online options and found one hotel offering a single room for just £22 and it was just 5 minutes' walk away from Hotel Riviera hotel. It was called Fairmont hotel [15 Priory Road, Bournemouth BH2 5DF] . I quickly booked it online and though the check in time was 15:00, and we had arrived at 12:00, he agreed to make a room available within 30 minutes after I told him my mum's situation. The hotel didn't have a lift though. While the room was being cleaned we waited at the hotel's small bar. It's also worth mentioning that I saw boxes of paracetamol in one of the vending machines next to the hotel bar. The first day we had Indian lunch and dinner and the 2nd day, after having a nice breakfast, we had meal deal of two 12 inch Cajun chicken pizza and grilled vegetables pizzas for about £12 at an Italian restaurant called Cristallo [3 West Cliff Road, Bournemouth BH2 5ES - 01202 556767 ] which was just about 2 minutes' walk from Fairmont hotel.

It was a nice trip. We walked and made sand castles on the beach, stepped into the cold beach water for a few moments, walked on the road alongside the beach which is on a higher altitude, view Old harry rocks using a paid Telescope which was actually "Free" for us because we could see through it without inserting 50p :). We also had ice creams and fish and chips from "The world famous Harry fish and chips" shop and visited the garden next to the beaches and saw the Aviary next to the garden which had a funny talking parrot. The squirrels and pegions came to us without any fear with hopes of being fed and had a nice time at the hotel.

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Order food online near BH2 5HL

Visit to Bournemouth 2009 and 2012 article

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