Hengistbury Head Visitor Centre
A day at Hengistbury Head Nature Reserve is truly a great day out, even outside of the summer. It is still full of wildlife, rare plants, and of course, the thousands of years of important archaeological history. There is plenty to discover and explore use the paths and trails, by foot or by bike. Wrap up and prepare for a bracing walk!
We recommend the Visitor Centre which has the TripAdvisor Travellers' Choice Award 2020 as a first port of call: it’s free entry and you can pick up some maps and tips on what to look out for on your walk.
The interactive exhibition explains all about the archaeology, ecology and geology celebrating 14,000 years of Bournemouth’s prehistory from the Stone Age through to the present day. Handle objects used by the Stone Age, Bronze Age and Iron Age people who lived, hunted and worked here.
When you take in the stunning panoramic views of Christchurch Harbour and Poole Bay, you will know what is lurking beneath those fresh and salt waters. Our wildlife cameras are very popular – capturing the very latest close-ups of the birds and mammals that frequent the boxes and nests of this SSSI site (site of Special Scientific Interest). What drama will unfold on the cameras before your eyes today?
If you prefer, stop in to the Visitor Centre on your way back: sit in the tranquil, sheltered wildlife garden with a hot drink and a snack, and perhaps buy a gift or two in the shop.
You’ll find these at the Visitor Centre:
- A gift shop selling souvenirs and local produce
- A full events and temporary exhibition programme (see website for details)
- A dedicated space for learning and community use
- Creative outdoor learning areas plus a wildlife garden with pond
- Easy access for all abilities and ages to information and activities
- Refreshments and ice cream
* Restrictions apply due to Coronavirus. Please check opening times directly.
TripAdvisor Traveller Rating:
- Very Good55
- jackandemmacurryNorthampton, United KingdomInteresting informationWednesday, 9th June 2021Full of stuff - all things visitor centre. Helpful volunteers guiding and supporting as needed. Worth a visit! Read full review
- davidhG1781QTSleaford, United KingdomTrip Type:FamilyGood walks, awful parking arrangements.Monday, 23rd August 2021We inadvertently chose a bad day as the visitor centre was closed. This was a major setback. Two comments. First the good: excellent walks for wheelchair users with miles of smooth tarmac. Now the... Read full review
- GlynMatBexleyheath, United KingdomVery interestingSaturday, 9th April 2022We had not realised that there was a visitor centre here. We entered the unknown and spent almost an hour inside with so many artefacts and so much excellent history and information. Read full review
- TripAdvisor Awards TripAdvisor Travellers Choice Award 2020