Christchurch is uniquely situated on the shores of its own harbour, close to the magnificent Dorset World Heritage Coast and the tranquil New Forest National Park. The mix of fascinating heritage, beautiful coastline and countryside and wide variety of attractions provide all the ingredients to make your holiday or short break extra special. With a great range of places to eat and drink, a wealth of things to see and do, plus a variety of festivals and events, there is something to suit everyone whatever your age or taste.
The surrounding unspoilt beaches are perfect for swimming, bodyboarding, or simply for just lazing around on and relaxing. Mudeford Quay has been traditionally linked with smuggling over the centuries and today is the focal point of the local fishing industry. In the older part of the town you will find the Red House Museum and gardens and the ruins of the Norman House and Christchurch Castle.
Begun in 1094 the Priory was built on the site of a Saxon Minster dating back to the 7th century and has the most magnificent architecture. A famous feature is its miraculous beam which can be seen high up on the south side. The amazing story of the beam can be read on a nearby board which explains how it came about that the name of the town was changed from Twynham to Christchurch
Hengistbury Head Nature Reserve and Ancient Monument
Hengistbury Head is a fascinating place, not only for its wide variety of habitats, but also for its internationally important archaeology and geology. Visit Hengistbury Head and discover the many walking and cycling routes with stunning views from the river to the sea and sandy beaches with the famous colourful beach huts.
Christchurch Harbour extends from Mudeford Spit in the east to the confluence of the Rivers Avon and Stour in the west. It is an important area for nature conservation and is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The Harbour and Quays are popular venues for a range of recreational activities including sailing, angling, bird watching and water sports.