Bournemouth Gardens and Aviary

The gardens in Bournemouth town centre have been a feature of Bournemouth life since the Victorian era, and in fact are Grade II listed. They are split into three separate areas:

The Lower Gardens –only a short walk from the pedestrianized shopping area, the beach, the pier and the Pavilion theatre. Our hotel leads directly into the Lower Gardens. This is where most activities are found – such as the bandstand, mini-golf, Bournemouth balloon and numerous free events throughout the year including the Pinewalk Art Exhibition in the summer. Pinewalk is exactly what it sounds like – a walkway between the pines. The smell of pines is said to be good for chest infections and Pinewalk was known as ‘Invalid’s Walk’ in Victorian times.

Bournemouth Aviary – run entirely by volunteers- is home to an exotic collection of birds, most of whom have been rescued. It is very easy to while a pleasant hour just wandering about the aviary. Find out more about the aviary.

The Central Gardens – just beyond the Lower Gardens is the start of the Central Gardens which extends all the way up to Coy Pond (no it’s not a spelling mistake – it was originally called Decoy Pond). The Central Gardens are also home to the Bournemouth Gardens Tennis Centre – which has five floodlit artificial grass courts, three indoor acrylic courts (covered by air dome October to May), a licensed bar and cafeteria, and a sports shop.

The Upper Gardens – started life as a private garden in the 1860’s. The Upper Gardens has a “three continent” theme – European, Asian and North American. There are a number of unusual tree species including a magnificent Giant Redwood and a group of mature Persian Ironwood trees. In the first section is a Gothic style Victorian water tower that looks like a castle turret, which was used to provide water for a fountain. The area has always been poorly drained and in spite of a great deal of shingle and broken clay pipe being imported, the area can still suffer from a lack of drainage – not always a bad thing for some of the species growing there. A number of wooden walkways allow easy access through the boggy foliage to see some of the rare and uncommon species growing there. Upper Gardens is the quietest of the three gardens, and a perfect place for peaceful picnic with a book or the Sunday papers.

Find out more about Bournemouth Gardens.

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