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The seaside city of Bournemouth is a jewel on England’s south coast, and a beachfront paradise that’s big on excitement, with water sports and fine dining just waiting to be explored. Plus, with a prime location in the middle of Dorset, you’ll be perfectly positioned to explore Southampton, Portsmouth and the rolling green hills of the Jurassic coast.
Pick up a hire car in Bournemouth and you’re free to dive into the spectacular landscapes of an ancient coastline. The Jurassic coast sweeps all the way across Dorset, and takes in an area that’s bursting with natural wonders, from the hidden treasure that is Lulworth Cove to the sweeping expanse of Poole’s Sandbanks.
Bournemouth Airport sits just outside of the city. Pick up your hire car here and you’ll be in the city centre within 20 minutes. Your other option is Southampton Airport which is served by a few more airlines, and takes about 40 minutes to drive to (incidentally, the route, which twirls through the New Forest Nature Reserve, is gorgeous).
You’ll find plenty of options when it comes to choosing your rental car in Bournemouth. Pick from brands including Alamo, Europcar and Hertz, or opt for a more environmentally friendly option from Green Motion.
Bournemouth’s big draws have always been its sun, sea and its incredible natural beauty. Take a surfing lesson on Bournemouth seafront, or get in your hire car and drive to Poole’s Sandbanks, about 10 minutes away. Here, a shallow bay makes a haven for paddle-boarders and kite-surfers, and you can find plenty of schools that can offer you lessons.
Southampton is a 50-minute drive away on the A35, and represents a big city alternative to Bournemouth’s sleepy sensibilities. Get a taste for the nightlife in the city centre or your daily dose of culture at Southampton City Art Gallery, which boasts a fantastic selection of 20th century and contemporary art. The city also has a unique air museum, the Solent Sky Museum, which features planes from British and international history.
Bristol is a little further, around two hours’ drive through picturesque English countryside. It’s a buzzing student city, with a thriving music scene. Climb the 100-plus steps to take in the views from the top of the Cabot Tower or get up close and personal with big cats and more at Bristol City Zoo. Or, head to Reading and explore Britain’s past at the ancient ruins of Reading Abbey.
Driving a hire care in Bournemouth will present nothing out of the ordinary if you’re used to British roads. The only thing to watch out to watch out for are busy routes on sunny weekends, as day trippers make their way to Bournemouth’s beautiful beaches.
Itching to get to begin your Bournemouth and England adventure? Use the Expedia Bournemouth city search tool to help you find the best car hire, flight and hotel deals and to research the best attractions and activities.
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