Things to see and do in Sandbanks
- Credit: Archant
Stylish Sandbanks and the neighbouring ‘villages’ of Lilliput and Canford Cliffs make the most of this beautiful coastal area. And there are plenty of fabulous hotels, restaurants, shops and sporting events for you to sample the high life or a sundowner or two
Board Meetings Sandbanks Style!
Sandbanks Style Ltd is a new local business catering for fans of stand-up paddle boarding (SUP), one of the world’s fastest growing sports. The difference is that they are designing their own boards. In fact the golden sands and blue waters of Sandbanks inspired the yellow and blue colour scheme of their Optimal Board.
SUP is the perfect exercise for strengthening the core and tummy muscles, and is beloved by trendy celebrities such as Lady Gaga who combines yoga on a SUP into her regular fitness regime.
Sandbanks Style offers board packages (including paddles) from £349, with a range of boards for adults as well as ones specifically designed for children. Pilates and yoga sessions often take place on SUPs, and if you want to give it a go yourself the Shaka Surf on Branksome Dene Beach rents out boards and offers classes.
For more details contact Sandbanks Style on 07881 885964 or visit supsales.co.uk.
Sandbanks and the creative talents behind the luscious locks of Jennifer Anniston combine at HNB Hair and Beauty Spa (hnbsalonspa.co.uk) a 4000sqft salon encompassing two levels of hair and beauty heaven. Jennifer Aniston’s brand of hair products, Living Proof, recently selected the HNB owner and celebrity hairdresser Stephanie Stevenson, to be the Living Proof UK Lead Educator for the multi award-winning hair care brand. On the first floor of this exclusive salon on Haven Road is HNB’s Medi-Clinic with registered doctors and nurses offering a range of pioneering medical treatments in advanced aesthetics, plastic surgery and other aspects of women’s health.
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Stay and Play
FJB Hotels own three gorgeous hotels on the Sandbanks peninsula, each with their own unique style and facilities and all offering a great place to enjoy a sundowner in style. The Haven Hotel on Banks Road is home to the fabulous Haven Spa. This offers hydrotherapy pools, sauna and steam room, outdoor pool, Jacuzzi and sun lounger area - perfect for soaking up the view in the summer months. There is also a fully equipped gym, tennis court as well as fitness classes and spa treatments.
For those wanting to get out on the water FJB’s Sandbanks Hotel is where you will find the Watersports Academy (thewatersportsacademy.com). Here you can get expert instruction in windsurfing, sailing, kitesurfing and SUP in the sheltered waters of Poole Harbour, one of the world’s largest natural harbours. Lessons are suitable for all ages and abilities, whether you are a novice wanting to give a new sport a go or a more experienced user who wants to brush up their skills. For more details visit fjbhotels.co.uk.
Bordering on Canford Cliffs and Sandbanks, Lilliput is one of Poole’s most charming suburbs. Overlooking the sea, the area is home to Salterns Marina, which incorporates a 5 Gold Anchor marina, a RYA Training School and a hotel, bar and restaurant. Sandbanks Road has a good range of shops and eateries including the fantastic Signature Flowers (signature-flowers.com) and a sister branch of the Koh Thai restaurants called Koh Noi (kohnoi.co.uk). Also worth unleashing your taste buds in is the renowned Patisserie Mark Bennett with his artisan cakes, breads and pastries (artisanmark.com) and the uber-cool bicycle emporium and café Rockets & Rascals (rocketsandrascals.com).
Ferry to Paradise
You’ll struggle to find a more beautiful stretch of coastline anywhere in the UK than the one at Studland. Though it can get crowded in the summer months, the queue for the Sandbanks Ferry is well worth it from the moment your feet touch the pristine white sands at the National Trust-owned Studland Beach (nationaltrust.org.uk.studlandbeach). Sunbathe, swim or explore the surrounding dunes and heathland to your heart is content! There is also the NT Knoll Café on site offering everything from light lunches to dinners. For those who want to go sans textile there is a clearly designated naturist area on the beach.
Also on Studland is the renowned Pig on the Beach (thepighotel.com). Formerly The Manor House Hotel it has now been transformed into a delightful 23 bedroom boutique hotel which serves a cracking cocktail and fabulous locally sourced food. It also has outstanding beach views.
All That Jazz!
Something of a Sandbanks institution, the Jazz Café on Shore Road has been providing superb cuisine and great live music since 1987 (jazzcafesandbanks.co.uk). Reservations are strongly recommended when it comes to the Sunday Lunch Jazz Session, the Friday Night Sessions are another opportunity to dine with a smooth soundtrack.
Let’s Do Brunch
With its golden sands, sparkling waters and sensational harbour views this is a lovely place to meet for brunch, coffee or afternoon tea. Check out the beach-side Sandbanks Café (sandbanksbeachcafe.co.uk) on the promenade next to Sandbanks Car Park and breakfast favourite Caff (caffbreakfastkitchen.com) on Banks Road. Meanwhile a few doors down fishy rumours abound that seafood aficionado Rick Stein is taking over the premises of the former Café Shore.
Known affectionately by locals as ‘The Village’, most visitors to Sandbanks arriving from east Dorset and Hampshire are likely pass through Canford Cliffs en-route. Take time to stop off and explore this lovely area. We recommend checking out The Cliff pub and restaurant (thecliffcanfordcliffs.co.uk), Harry’s Bar and Bistro (harrysbarandbistro.co.uk), cupcake heaven at Lulubelles Cakes (lulubellescakes.com) and Oxfords Bakery (oxfordsbakery.co.uk). Pinecliff Gardens offers one of the local area’s most unique attractions – a collection of ‘play sculptures’ of animals, insects and marine life.
Since opening last summer, Sandbanks Yacht Company (sandbanksyachtcompany.com) has rapidly developed into one of the area’s coolest hang-outs. Club membership includes access to the on-site gym, four complimentary sessions with a personal trainer, free car parking and 10% off at the Boatyard Café Bar and Treatment Rooms as well as invitations to members-only events. Non-members can pop in for breakfast, smoothies, lunch, coffee and cake! Private sailing clubs in the local area include the renowned Royal Motor Yacht Club (rmyc.co.uk). Steeped in over 100 years of history and tradition the club embraces both sailing and motor boating and has over 1600 members. It has welcomed many famous names over the years including the band leader Billy Cotton, Sir Malcolm Campbell, George Formby and socialite Lady Norah Docker who claims their barman made the best dry Martini in the world!