Resort Dorset on FacebookResort Dorset on TwitterResort Dorset on Instagram
COVID-19: Enjoy Dorset responsibly. Please follow government advice on restrictions and social distancing. Prior to travel, please check with individual businesses and event organisers for confirmation of opening times and restrictions.

Brownsea Island

Brownsea Island is the largest of the islands in Poole harbour. It has been owned by The National Trust since 1962 and is open to visitors from March until October. 

Brownsea Island

Brownsea Island by Ian Woolcock / shutterstock.com

A visit to Brownsea Island begins for most visitors with an exciting ferryboat trip across Poole Harbour from Poole, Sandbanks, Bournemouth or Swanage. The island is dramatically located at the entrance to the harbour and has spectacular cliff top views of the surrounding area including Studland and the Purbeck Hills. The island's fascinating and colourful history includes use as a coastguard station, Victorian pottery, Edwardian country estate, daffodil farm, decoy in World War 2 and in 1907 was the site of Baden-Powell's first scout camp. 

The island is managed primarily for nature conservation and for visitors. The pine woodlands on Brownsea have important populations of red squirrel, which are increasingly rare in Britain.  In fact in southern England they can only be seen on the Isle of Wight and on islands in Poole Harbour.  It's also important for nesting seabirds especially terns and overwintering birds like avocets, which use the lagoon at the eastern end of the island. There is also an area of heathland - a once common but now increasingly rare habitat in southern Britain. 

Please share or leave a comment

More Places of Interest

More Places of Interest...

Places to Go

Find places to go and things to do in Dorset using the options below.

Dorset Events

25 Jun 2021 to 27 Jun 2021
TANKFEST 2021
Wareham
10 Jul 2021 to 11 Jul 2021
Nyetimber Dorset Seafood Festival
Weymouth
29 Jul 2021 to 01 Aug 2021
Camp Bestival
Lulworth
31 Jul 2021 to 07 Aug 2021
Swanage Carnival
Swanage
Shaftesbury

Latest Dorset Features

16 Nov 2020
Shop for Dorset this Christmas Shop Dorset and it’s a win, win – not only will your gift please the recipient but by shopping locally online in these difficult times you’ll be helping our Dorset businesses. Below are just a few ideas for Christmas gifts and goodies. Cheesed off? – Well check out Delicious, the Weymouth deli that will deliver cheeses and wines to your Dorset door. Craig’s Dairy Farm Shop and Chalbury Food & Wine are open and well-stocked with tasty local ... Read more...
21 Oct 2020
Half-term Fun in Dorset So, it’s the October half term and you may be wondering how you’re going to keep the kids entertained in these restricted times! Well don’t worry, whether you are local resident or are staying in Dorset on a break, there’s lots to do throughout the seasons. Our Resort family has children of different ages and here are some of the things we plan to enjoy; perhaps you will too! Fossil Hunting – you may just discover the next big thing! Do be aware ... Read more...
28 Sep 2020
Halloween Events in Dorset The October half-term is now synonymous with Halloween and the themed fun that takes place. If you’re out and about in Dorset, you’ll find many a Halloween event happening, so grab your broomsticks, sharpen those fangs, and prepare to have one hell of a good time! Dorset Halloween events and activities include everything from Monster Minions to Ghost Tours and more besides. It's scary how much there is to choose from... Halloween Events Read more...

More articles available in the features section.

Sign up for Resort Dorset offers, events and news by email
Your data will only be used to send relevant information relating to Resort Dorset magazine and digital platforms. We will not share your data with any third parties, and you can of course unsubscribe at any time. Please see our full privacy policy here.