Also a small peaceful seaside town in Dorset, England, dating from Saxon times. Christchurch sits on the edge of a very pretty harbour between two rivers, the Avon and the Stour, and was originally called Twynham: 'the town between two rivers'. The town gradually became known as Christchurch from the 11th century Norman priory on the town's highest hill beside the sea, once the only landmark building for miles. It's a picture-book town, very Olde England, with small twisty streets, oak-beamed shops and cottages and thousands of flower-filled hanging baskets. The rivers are clean and clear, with swans and transparent fish lazily drifting past manicured lawns that slope down to the water and up to a ruined castle on a hill by the priory. Behind the town, the edges of the New Forest: in front of it, the sea, with wide bays and perfect beaches curving out on either side.

It's not a place for nightlife (there isn't any, as far as I know) but for riding, fishing, sailing, painting and walking it's probably one of the best spots in the country. There are also several airfields in the vicinity, and an excellent local skiing centre. If you really must have evening entertainment there is a weeny Art Deco cinema, or you can head into Bournemouth, much bigger and livelier and a few miles further down the coast.