151 kilometres southwest of London, Bournemouth is a large coastal town on the south coast of England. The city has a large appeal to young tourists due to its variety of beaches, vibrant nightlife and cultural festivals. Bournemouth is also a resort town, and has long been a popular holiday spot for Brits.
Bournemouth has been a popular south coast seaside resort for 200 years, and the traditional tourist season remains the English summer, from June to September. The Dorset climate is temperate, and summer weather tends to be idyllic, with temperatures in the 70s or low 80s on average, and even the hottest days are softened by cooling Channel breezes. The town's entertainment program goes into overdrive in the summer, with comedy, music and drama productions in the town's many venues, and a folk music and dance event on the Quay in late June. While still a popular destination for a traditional summer seaside family vacation, Bournemouth has become increasingly popular with water sports enthusiasts. The summer season is the busiest time for surf schools and for paddleboarding, windsurfing and sailing clubs. Out of season, the atmosphere is a little quieter, although Bournemouth does host the Arts by the Sea festival in late September and early October, which features music, dance and theater events, along with art installations. At Christmas time, the town gardens are decorated with elaborate light shows, well worth a day trip to the Dorset coast for travellers who haven't managed a Bournemouth break in the summer.