To provide you with the best experience, cookies are used on this site. Find out more here.

Allow cookies

Brownsea Island - National Trust

Aerial photograph of the stunning Brownsea island castle


Brownsea Island is a wildlife sanctuary that’s easy to reach but feels like another world from the moment you step ashore. There is wildlife to spot and woodland to explore; outdoor activities to try and beaches to picnic on; birds to watch and trails to wander. Check out the different types of things you can do below:

Tours, talks and trails 


Make the most of your visit and join a free introductory talk or pick up a self-led trail at the Visitor Centre and unlock the secrets and history of Brownsea.  For the less-abled we also offer a free, bookable electric buggy island tour.

Outdoor Centre


Sample the scouting life at the Outdoor Centre; spend a night under the stars on our Eco Adventure Camping experience, or learn about intriguing tales of survival and adventure at the Trading Post.

Wild Brownsea


Wildlife spotters can follow waymarked routes through a wealth of different habitats from the sheltered lagoon and sweeping shorelines, to woodlands and heathland.  As you wander, keep an eye out for the famous red squirrel.

Villano café & Engine Gift Shop


Sample homemade food and drinks with garden views over Poole Harbour.  You can support Brownsea by picking up a souvenir at the Engine Gift Shop and check out the lovingly restored electric light engine.



We have plenty of free and ticketed seasonal events for everyone from wildlife lovers to adventures with family.  For the full events programme, prices and information please visit the website.

Places to stay


There are two holiday cottages on Brownsea island, both located on the quay with stunning harbour fronted views and metres away from the water’s edge.  For more information please visit website and look under ‘places to stay’.

Campsite and South Shore Lodge


Brownsea Island campsite is located where Lord Baden-Powell held the first experimental Scout camp in 1907. Spend a night under the starts on our Eco Adventure camping experience from April to September.  South Shore Lodge provides bunk bed accommodation, a common room, kitchen facilities and a shower and toilet block. From here your group can explore the whole island whilst making the most of the tranquil and beautiful surroundings of the lodge.

Accessability to Brownsea Island


Ferries depart from Poole Quay and Sandbanks Jetty.   All visitors including members need to purchase ferry tickets, available in advance or on the day at the kiosks on Poole Quay. 

Please note access to the island is limited for disabled visitors please check with the boat company before travelling. The Brownsea Seahorse runs a pre-bookable service for wheelchair bound visitors running from Sandbanks to National Trust Brownsea Island on set days (subject to weather and tide).   Call 01202 707744 for dates and booking. 

There is also a landing fee to pay for non National Trust members on top of normal boat fare.


Guide Prices

Ferry fare payable when travelling to Brownsea Island. There is also a landing fee payable on the island for non National Trust members.
2019 admission

National Trust members:                                               FREE
Adult:                                                                             Gift Aid: £8.40        Standard: £7.50
Child:                                                                             Gift Aid: £4.20        Standard: £3.75
Family ( 2 adults and up to 3 children)                          Gift Aid: £21.00      Standard: £18.75
Family ( 1 adult and up to 3 children):                           Gift Aid: £12.60      Standard: £11.25

(Gift aid admission, includes 10% donation towards the upkeep of the island)

Opening Times

Opening Times (Winter Weekends) (2 Feb 2019 - 10 Mar 2019)
Saturday - Sunday10:00 - 16:00
Main Season Opening Times (16 Mar 2019 - 3 Nov 2019)
Monday - Sunday10:00 - 17:00

* Main season - Boats leave every half hour from Poole Quay and Sandbanks
WINTER OPENINGS - Brownsea Island Bird Boat Trips will be running over Winter and there will also be Winter Weekend openings from February 2020. Please see website for further information on the out of season programme.

Via ferry from Poole Quay
BH15 1HJ
Close window

Call direct on:

Tel01202 707744



TripAdvisor Traveller Rating:

4.5 of 5 stars
  • Certificate of Excellence 2019
  • Excellent
  • Very Good
  • Average
  • Poor
  • Terrible

Recent Reviews:

    Map & Directions

    Hide Facilities

    What's Nearby

    1. Compton Acres

      Enjoy over 10 acres of horticultural heaven with spectacular themed gardens, relax in the…

      1.72 miles away
    2. Poole Old Lifeboat Museum & Shop

      Housing one of Poole's historic lifeboats, Thomas Kirk Wright, the old boathouse offers…

      1.88 miles away
    3. Poole Museum & Scaplen's Court

      Discover the story of Poole - Harbour, Town & People from prehistory to the 21st century.

      2.09 miles away
    1. Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts

      Experience, explore, discover and join in with the arts at Lighthouse, the largest…

      2.1 miles away
    2. Sea Music Sculpture

      Sea Music. located on Poole Quay is the only British public site specific sculpture made…

      2.1 miles away
    3. Poole Park

      Just a short walk from the centre of town you'll discover a haven of peace and rare…

      2.17 miles away
    4. Twin Sails Bridge

      Poole's landmark structure and the first bridge of its type to be built in the world.

      2.36 miles away
    5. Poole Stadium Greyhound Racing

      Let's Go Racing... A great night out for all the family, enjoy your evening & cheer your…

      2.46 miles away
    6. Poole Speedway

      Poole Pirates are a motorcycle speedway team based in Poole, England, competing in the…

      2.47 miles away
    7. Splashdown Poole

      Splashdown Poole is the South’s favourite all-action waterpark! Whatever the weather,…

      3.86 miles away
    8. Lemur Landings

      Lemur Landings is one of Dorset’s largest indoor soft play centres, it really is the…

      3.89 miles away
    9. Tower Park Leisure Complex

      At Tower Park, Poole, a galaxy of entertainment unfolds. With the Splashdown water park…

      3.93 miles away
    10. Upton Country Park

      Whatever the season, there's something for everyone - enjoy the wildlife along the…

      4.01 miles away
    11. Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum

      The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum houses important collections of paintings,…

      4.22 miles away
    12. Swanage Railway

      A unique chance to experience one of the best steam rides ever!

      5.53 miles away
    13. Corfe Castle Model Village and Gardens

      Be a Time Travelling Giant!
      1/20th scale model of Corfe Castle and the village as it was…

      5.7 miles away
    Previous Next