Brownsea Island is the largest of the islands in Poole Harbour, with spectacular views across the harbour and to the Purbeck Hills. The island is owned by the National trust with the northern half managed by the Dorset Wildlife Trust.
The island is an interesting mix of woodland, heathland and a lagoon creating an ideal habitat for wildlife such as the red squirrel, sika deer and a wide variety of birds such as oystercatchers, kingfishers, avocets, spoonbills, common and sandwich terns.
On the island you can also find a Scout Commemorative Stone. Lord Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the Scout movement, held the first experimental camp here in 1907. Scouts and Guides from all over the world still make pilgrimages to Brownsea for camps and day trips.
A visit to Brownsea Island makes for a perfect family day out. There are plenty of trails to explore around the island, a visitor centre, peacocks roaming free and pretty little beaches and coves.
Boats to Brownsea Island
There is a regular ferry service that runs from from Poole Quay to Brownsea Island everyday from around Mid-March to the end of October. The ferry service is operated by Brownsea Island Ferries. The first ferry departs Poole Quay at 10am. Ferry tickets can be booked online on the National Trust website. National Trust non-members will also have to pay for entrance to the island – See prices below. Ferry tickets can also be bought on the day of departure at the Brownsea Island Ferries kiosk on Poole Quay but if you want to guarantee availability then we recommend booking online in advance especially during the summer months and if you want to depart on one of the earlier ferries.