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Boscombe and Southbourne Overcliff

This wheelchair-accessible clifftop and grassland reserve is home to some amazing wildlife.

Boscombe and Southbourne Overcliff is a Site of Nature Conservation Interest and provides stunning views across the bay to Old Harry Rocks and the Purbeck Hills.

There are occasional guided walks throughout the year. There are hard-surfaced paths all along the reserve, so they are suitable for wheelchair users too.

Birds and reptiles

The reserve is a long and narrow strip of grassy scrub that’s home to several rare species of plants and animals. The birds you can see here include Dartford warblers, stonechats, greenfinches and kestrels.

It’s also home to two exotic species of reptile, the wall lizard and green lizard, which you can see on warm days basking in the sun on the walls of the zig-zag path at Portman Ravine.

Insects (and goats)

If you’re interested in insects, then keep an eye out for the beewolf which hunts bees and carries them off to its underground lair. In the warmer weather you can spot many butterflies, including the common blue, painted lady and clouded yellow.

A little further down towards Boscombe Pier you might even spot some of the British feral goats that help us by grazing on the scrub at Honeycomb Chine.

Getting there

See the location of Boscombe and Southbourne Overcliff on our map, as well as the other nature reserves and parks in Bournemouth.

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