Wildfowl at Christchurch Harbour

Wildfowl at Christchurch Harbour

Christchurch Quay and harbour is just south of the town centre and a hub for sailing, windsurfing and powerboating. There are several sailing clubs based here as well as watersports tuition providers and equipment shops. Family-friendly beaches around Christchurch include Avon Beach stretching along the coast to Highcliffe-on-Sea from which you can see The Needles and the Isle of Wight off into the distance on a clear day.

Christchurch sailing waters

Christchurch sailing waters

Watersports

Christchurch Harbour is a natural harbour fringed with marshes and reeds. It's a popular sailing destination with four square miles of race water in Christchurch Bay. There are several sailing clubs based here which organise regular competitions throughout the year. Avon Beach is popular for windsurfing and attracts windsurfers from all over the country. You can pick up windsurfing tuition as well as lessons in powerkiting, powerboating and scuba diving taught along the RYA/PADI guidelines. Boat trips are also available from Christchurch, and trips include cruises around Christchurch Harbour and further out to The Needles and Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight.

Beaches

The beaches around Christchurch extend for four miles from Highcliffe, on the eastern boundary of Dorset, to Avon Beach in the west. You can access the beaches at various points from the main A337 road. Highcliffe Beach is easily accessible with a large pay and display car park minutes from Highcliffe town centre. There are modern toilet facilities and the Cliffhanger Cafe adjacent to the car park. There are walks along the top of the gorse covered slopes and down to the beach from the car park. The beach itself is a mixture of fine shingle and sand. It's popular for walks, body boarding and swimming.

Highcliffe Beach

Highcliffe Beach

Steamer Point & Avon Beach

Steamer Point is another access point to a more pebbly beach. There is a small car park adjacent to Steamer Point wooded Nature Reserve on the cliff top. Avon Beach is a popular sandy beach with a gentle slope to the sea and safe swimming making it popular with families. Beach huts line the beach and are available to hire by the week or day. The beach area in front of the car park is designated for watersports. There is also a shop and cafe so you won't have to go far for refreshments and buckets and spades!

Harbour Wildlife Birdwatching

Christchurch Harbour is a protected wildlife site. It's important for its saltmarsh, heathland and sand dunes at Hengistbury Head. The harbour is a great place for birdwatcher's and a good range of species have been seen here including Cetti's warbler, bearded tit, spotted crake, Jack snipe, shelduck and migrating species such as wheatear, whinchat and firecrest and ospreys are also seen regularly.

Accommodation in Christchurch

  • Christchurch   (1.9 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 8
    Prices from
    £202
    3 night Caravan/Apartment breaks. Sleep 4-8
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 99 reviews
    Rating from 99 reviews
    Stylish beachfront holiday park on the Dorset Coast overlooking Christchurch Harbour with spacious caravans & apartments, outdoor pool, playground, gym & family bar. Sleep 4-8.
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 99 reviews
    Rating from 99 reviews
  • Bournemouth   (1.3 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 6
    Prices from
    £200
    per week (seasonal) Sleeps up to 6
     
    Two self contained apartments in an original Bournemouth Victorian house close to beach. Onsite parking. Use of large garden. WiFi. One apt sleeps up to 4, the other up to 6
     
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  • Bournemouth   (1.6 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Prices from
    £1,350
    Per week (seasonal)
     
    Beautiful 5 bedroom celebration property in Bournemouth ideal for groups including stag/ hen parties. 3 twin & 2 triple bedrooms, parking for 2 cars, Wi-Fi. Pet friendly.
     
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  • Christchurch   (1.3 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 4
    Prices from
    £295
    Per Week (Seasonal) sleeps 4
     
    5* luxury Dorset self catering holiday cottage in Christchurch, on the edge of the New Forest. Family friendly with large gardens & spacious rooms. Sleeps 4 +
     
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    Self Catering
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  • Christchurch   (1.5 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 6
    Prices from
    £600
    per week (seasonal) sleeps 6
     
    Modern self catering cottage accommodation close to Mudeford Quay & Christchurch. 3 bedrooms, parking, Freeview TV, wifi. Private slipway, storage for kayaks/ windsurfers. Sleeps 6
     
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  • Christchurch   (0.2 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Prices from
    £310
    Per week (seasonal) sleep 1-6
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 36 reviews
    Rating from 36 reviews
    Town house accommodation in Christchurch offering self-catering holiday homes furnished to a high standard. Great for families, couples, singles and groups.
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 36 reviews
    Rating from 36 reviews
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    Self Catering
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  • Bournemouth   (1.6 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 4
    Prices from
    £420
    7 nights (seasonal)
     
    Ground floor Bournemouth apartment, just a short walk from the beach, shops and restaurants. Cot and high chair available free of charge. Well equipped kitchen & laundry facilities
     
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  • Christchurch   (1.3 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 8
    Prices from
    £1,493
    Per week (seasonal), sleeps 8
     
    Large holiday home in Southbourne, in an elevated position with sea views. Excellent modern luxury facilities throughout. Ideal for large families and small groups. Parking. WiFi.
     
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  • Bournemouth   (1.6 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Sleeps 2
    Prices from
    £235
    Per Week (seasonal) Sleeps 2
     
    Well appointed studio apartment in Bournemouth set just 100 metres from the beach at Southbourne. Off road parking, Wi-Fi service, cot/ high chair for children. No pets.
     
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  • Christchurch   (0.5 miles from the centre of Christchurch)
    Prices from
    £50
    Per Room (Amend up to 1pm on arrival day)
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 405 reviews
    Rating from 405 reviews
    A short walk from Christchurch Rail Station, this Premier Inn hotel is just 4 miles (6.5 km) from Bournemouth International Airport. There is free parking and an onsite restaurant,
    TripAdvisor traveller rating from 405 reviews
    Rating from 405 reviews