Friday 28 August 2015

Bournemouth's Hidden Gems

I recently travelled down to Bournemouth to stay with Travelodge and came across some places that I wanted to share with you. I love a hidden gem* and know of many in Southampton. The three places I found in Bournemouth will seem quite touristy but I find that sometimes the most wonderful places are staring you right in the face, places you possibly wouldn't go because they're so obvious.

Patisserie Valerie - 2-6 Post Office Road BH1 1BA
I'd never heard of Patisserie Valerie before but since coming back from Bournemouth it seems like they're all over the country. Not quite a hidden gem as such but a gem none the less. I only found this place because I needed a cash machine and walked past their beautiful windows full of treats. The patisserie was like stepping into Paris. The service was impeccable, the coffee perfectly roasted and the individual cakes divine. I tried both the chocolate mousse and double chocolate gateau because... why not? I'm so eager to go back and try more.

Brays Fish & Chips 7 West Cliff Road BH2 5ES
Brays is about a minutes walk from Travelodge Bournemouth Seaview and as we arrived quite late the first night we dived into the nearest chippy. We were recommended Harry Ramsdens down by the pier which we did try but Brays was so much better. The owner was so friendly and even chucked in an extra bit of fish on our second night, we ate there twice while in Bournemouth. You can sit outside or take away which is what we opted to do both times so we could sit down on the beach. There's nothing better than golden battered fish and salted chips while watching the tide.

Bournemouth Beach 
The most obvious gem for me is Bournemouth Beach. I am a real sea baby, I've always lived by it and couldn't imagine living anywhere but near the sea. There are seven miles of sandy beach to walk along and explore. From your typical arcades and ice cream huts to winding coastal walks along the cliffs, the best bit being that it's completely free. The South Coast is beautiful in the summer (when we have one) and I think a lot of us forget how much we can do and explore for free. Staying with Travelodge made it really easy to do this as it was right on the door step. 

Where do you live and what would your three hidden gems be?

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