Branksome to Bournemouth Pier SUP


SUP Bournemouth if you crave a mild year round micro-climate and fun sized waves to improve your wave riding skills.

Bournemouth Pier b2

≈ Quick Facts:

  • Beach Name: Bournemouth
  • What is the distance to the pier: 2 miles
  • How long does it take to the pier: 20 minutes
  • Shelter from wind: N – NW
  • Best Tide: Outgoing
  • Waves: Yes (Winter biggest)
  • Pay To Park: Yes
  • Parking Distance: 3 minute walk
  • Do you pay to launch: No
  • SUP Rental: No
  • Wildlife: Not seen
  • Eat & Drink: Restaurant & Takeaway
  • Toilets: Yes
  • Hazards: Groynes

LP SOUTH COAST ABournemouth Pier taken by Gary Knights

≈ Location Guide: 

Where to park & launch a SUP in Branksome?



Launch from Branksome Chine, there’s a car park with toilets right by the beach so no long walk with your gear (and a decent cafe!).

Branksome ChineBranksome Chine car park

What is it like to SUP Bournemouth Pier?
Launch from Branksome Beach and paddleboard alongside the tall cliffs and groynes towards Bournemouth Pier. There’s plenty to look at on the way. On a clear day you can see right over to the Isle of Wight. What you’re heading for is the West side of Bournemouth Pier. Unless you are a pro I would keep well clear of the East side, unless you get a kick out being shouted at by very territorial surfers. I love to SUP Bournemouth pier for the simple reason that the waves are much better there than at Branksome, twice the height and much longer rides. You will be able to check out if there’s any waves up at the Pier by standing on Branksome Chine prom. I treat the SUP up the coast as a warm up, I get much more out of the session if I do this. Bournemouth pier has a slowly shelving beach so you can stand up in the water a fair way out if you want to hop off. I spend an hour or so surfing the pier then paddle back to Branksome Chine for a well earned cuppa.

Branksome view to bournemouth PierView towards Bournemouth Pier from Branksome Chine

When is the ideal time to SUP this route?
My favourite wind direction that ALWAYS tempts me down to the beach is a light North Westerly, the sea is more or less shielded from the wind by the high cliffs on this entire stretch of coast. The wind does reach the water around the pier though due to the land being much lower in this area, so I only  SUP Bournemouth in a LIGHT North Westerly. I usually launch about at 6am before the wind picks up. Best time of day, have the whole place to myself! Just make sure that the wind isn’t due to swing around W/SW any time soon. It’s a long painful SUP back to Branksome if you’re totally knackered from riding waves for a couple of hours.

mike pboard pier 8

I always check the webcams on before leaving, just to make sure there are actually waves at the pier. I don’t like to SUP Bournemouth pier so much in the Summer (unless I do the 6am dawn patrol!), the whole world descends on it. The beach is a real tourist magnet, the sea full of people jumping and splashing about just where you want to surf. There’s generally a lot of boats flying about as well which chops the sea up quite a bit. The choice of Season makes a huge difference, you could paddleboard Bournemouth pier in March and have the whole place to yourself, bliss!!! 

Bournemouth Pier 2


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2 Responses

  1. Jeremy Thomas says:

    Excellent site, keep it up! On holiday in the Dorset area next week, used the site to research potential tours around Poole and Christchurch, some great advice. Suggestions for you next time you’re in South Wales – Langland to Caswell and beyond (very popular); Aberavon to Neath river (not so pretty but small waves). Both should only be tried in very light winds and on the push.
    Best wishes, Jeremy

    • SUP HQ says:

      Cheers fella, glad to hear you’re finding the website useful! Did want to test drive Langland the last trip up but unfortunately it was waaaay too windy. Ho hum, next time! 🙂

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