Boat Trips – Swanage and Beyond

April 23rd, 2018

Boat trips and cruises offer the best way to relax and see an area from a different point of view. Imagine the sun glinting off the waves as you chug along the Jurassic coastline, taking in views of some of the most picturesque areas in the country. Whether you’re popping across to Poole Quay or visiting Brownsea Island there’s so many boat trips Swanage has to offer. With so much choice within a stone’s throw of Ulwell Cottage Caravan Park – here are five of the best. Welcome aboard!

City Cruises

With City Cruises you are spoilt for choice. They provide a range of trips from different departure points that allow you to see as much of the area as possible. From Swanage Pier you can either take the 2 hour Jurassic Coastal Cruise or travel to Poole Quay in style on the Poole Day Cruise.  With many boat trips that  run throughout the year so you can really take advantage whatever the season.

Hop aboard from: Poole, Swanage or Bournemouth

Booking: Available here


Brownsea Island Ferries


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Whether you’re taking a trip to Brownsea Island to visit the red squirrels, want to visit Swanage Bay or fancy a jaunt down to Wareham, these distinctive yellow boats are just the thing. A much-loved part of local history, Brownsea Island Ferries have been showing off the sights of the area for over 100 years – so you’ll be sure to learn a thing or two along the way.

Hop aboard from: Poole Quay or Sandbanks

Prices: Adults from £7, children from £5, family tickets available. See full tariff.

Booking: Tickets can be purchased from Yellow Kiosk on Poole Quay (BH15 1HJ) and Sandbanks (BH13 7QN) or call 01929 462383


Paddle Steamer Monarch

Monarch Paddle Steamer - Boat Trips in Swanage and Beyond

A relaxing trip filled with old-time elegance, the unique steam-driven paddle steamer takes you down the River Frome and beyond Red Cliff. Monarch is one of only three working paddle steamers in the UK, these trips are available most weekends from Easter onwards – you can even enjoy a complimentary cup of tea or coffee before you board.


Wareham River Cruise

Wareham River Cruise

Hop aboard from: Poole Quay

Prices: Adults £13, children £6.50 (family tickets and seniors available too)

Booking: Available online here

This wonderful leisurely trip from Poole to Wareham takes 3.5 hours, including a stop off to explore Wareham. When moored, you’ll be able to visit boutiques, galleries, bistros and pubs and even the only Saxon church in Dorset. With refreshments available on the boat, this is the ideal way to unwind in the sun. Greenslade Pleasure Boats also run Poole Harbour and Swanage Cruises, a Brownsea Island Ferry as well as seasonal specials such as Fish ‘n’ Chip Suppers and Fireworks Cruises.

What our guests say

  • A gem of a place

    Sandra, Winchester

    What a find. I almost don’t want to tell you about it.

    It’s a family park with lovely, mostly new, fresh, clean spacious caravans – all set out almost in steps on the side of a small hill. The larger hill rises behind you, the sea spreads out in front and the swimming pool beckons behind the bar.

    The people are friendly, the site is clean and welcoming and the scenery unbeatable. It’s a gem of a place.

  • Always my no.1 choice when visiting Swanage


    Always my no.1 choice when visiting Swanage. A truly wonderful location, lying under the stunning Ballard Down and surrounded by beautiful countryside. Being only a 10 min walk from Swanage and the coast means it’s conveniently located for all amenities.

    The staff are always very helpful to sort out any problems and keep the site in fantastic condition. A 5-star park.

  • Friendly, clean & well kept

    Cheshire, UK

    Stayed here as a base to tour Isle of Purbeck and go on to Air show in Bournemouth. Not the cheapest site but definitely the cleanest and well thought out.

    Swimming pool , shop and pub/restaurant all in proximity and well kept/stocked. Bus stop right outside entrance. Grass pitches have plenty of space and well drained with shower blocks water/ drain points really handy.

    Will definitely be using this site again.

  • Lovely weekend

    Tina, London

    We have just returned from a lovely weekend caravanning at Ulwell Cottage Caravan Park.
    Lovely clean site with indoor heated pool. We went in the pool around 5pm and were the only ones in there (apart from life guard) it was lovely and warm and clean.

    We walked to old Harry’s rock and then Down into Swanage itself and had fish and chips and an ice cream.
    Staff on the site were helpful and friendly. Lovely stay.

  • Our second, lovely Christmas at Ulwell

    Jane P, Cheltenham

    After the success of Christmas 2016 at Ulwell, we returned again for Christmas 2017 and had another great time. Lovely warm caravan, peaceful and relaxing on site and a fantastic carvery on Boxing Day at The Village Inn.

    Thanks to all staff who were working and made sure we had such a great break away.

All reviews


We are currently at an amazing 4.5 score at TripAdvisor, based upon 200+ reviews from verified guests.

Latest reviews

Proudly associated

Over the years the family has developed the park to award-winning standards and in a style which compliments its surroundings.

  • Camping and caravanning
  • AA
  • British Holiday & Home Parks assocation
  • Poole Tourism
  • Visit Britain

Finding us


From Bournemouth via the Sandbanks chain ferry and following the B3351 into Swanage.

From Wareham using the A351 into Swanage, turn left along the seafront towards Studland.


The park is situated on the main bus route from Bournemouth to Swanage.


1 ° 58’ 16” West, 50° 37’ 34” North



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