Fun things to do in Dorset

  • The Fort From The Gardens
    The Fort From The Gardens
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    Inland landscape from Eype
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Most Viewed Things to Do in Dorset

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    Studland

    by Jenniflower Written May 19, 2007

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    We reached Studland by going on the ferry, across from Poole.

    The toll gate for the ferry is this side. We paid and went on.

    Studland is renowned for its absolutely spectacular white chalky cliffs! I have a very hazy photo of a partial part of the cliff only unfortunately. Weather was really bad and it just didnt make sense to take the trek to the best clidd vantage points, to not be able to see much.

    We will definately come here again to take full advantage of the scenery it offers.

    Related to:
    • Historical Travel
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Archeology

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    Poole

    by Jenniflower Written May 19, 2007

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    We drove through Poole and stopped twice, enjoying the atmosphere and people.

    Even though the weather had turned foul, there were still people about and lots of water sports happening! The winds were certainly very strong! One chap we watched was kite surfing, and he went on for quite a time! Not sure how he got back though...

    We went to the ferry, to take us across to Studland.

    It is a brief, 7 minute ferry journey, and it was a pity the weather wasnt playing along, as I am sure we missed out on a lot of lovely scenery.

    We waited about 15 minutes for the ferry to arrive at our side, and all the cars drove on. It took many cars! It was about £3 per car, you pay double if you have a trailer!

    Didnt get to see much of it, saw a bit of residential and some industrial (with some really ugly buildings), but hope to go back here again some day to see what it really has to offer!

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    • Archeology
    • Historical Travel

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    Corfe Castle

    by Jenniflower Written May 19, 2007

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    This was a delightful find!

    Corfe Castle is the name of the castle as well as the name of the little village itself!

    As you enter Corfe Castle, the castle ruins come into view, overlooking the town, on the hill. The hill it is on is very steep and one can imagine how, in war times, how very helpful this sheer hill side was in guarding the castle! The soldiers in the castle had a huge advantage over their enemies!

    We took shots of the castle from various angles, we have a fondness for castles, whether a ruin or not, and have seen many in England, Wales and Scotland especially.

    The weather wasnt great, and the greyness of the skies lent a certain moodiness to the ruin castle scene.

    We would love to come back here and explore more... the village houses and shops are all built from the local stone and has a lovely atmosphere!

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    • Castles and Palaces
    • Arts and Culture

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    East Lulworth ~ Lulworth Castle

    by Jenniflower Written May 19, 2007

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    We visited here briefly, largely to see Lulworth Castle.

    Lulworth Castle is found in East Lulworth. We saw the outskirts and it has winding long lanes and lots of greenery.

    The castle is certainly majestic, with huge fortified towers and impressive latticed windows.

    There were loads of people and children there, it is family-friendly, although wheel chair access is quite inhibited at times. This is sadly the case with many castles due to the nature of their architecture.

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    • Castles and Palaces

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    Swanage

    by Jenniflower Updated May 19, 2007

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    Swanage is another favourite Dorset town, after Cerne Abbas!

    It doesnt have a huge beach (Weybridge wins hands-down there!), but has a lot of character and some fantastic shops!

    I rarely enjoy shopping, and here I loved it. I will write more re the shops here on my Swanage page. There is something for everyone.

    My favourite shop being 'Curiousity'... it is an absolute delight for any girl.. with all kinds of knick knacks... and it is very popular! This is quite off-putting though, as it was crowded and the shop, although large, has tiny aisles and is jam-packed with produce!

    There are many smalll boats and sailing ships here, as well as a large scuba diving contingent.

    We enjoyed sitting by the side of the stoney harbour wall, watching all that was going on around us.

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    Cerne Abbas

    by Jenniflower Updated May 18, 2007

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    This was the little village we stayed at when we visited Dorset.

    We fell in love with it!

    From its winding roads to its impressive church and abbey, from a very interesting cemetary (I love cemetteries!) to its renowned Royal Oak pub with its own Master Chef of England - with it's huge collection of teapots and tea cups hanging from the ceilings, which is also a couple of hundred years old!

    The cream teas we had here were so delicious - we couldnt watch the calories for fear of passing out... - they were so good we had them twice!

    Tons of history and a pretty, neat little village.

    Definately a thumbs up for Cerne Abbas :)

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    • Castles and Palaces
    • Architecture

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    Christchurch

    by leffe3 Updated Apr 2, 2007

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    Built at the point where the Rivers Stour and Avon meet on the Dorset coast, there has been a settlement here since the Iron Age, and was an important port in Saxon times - the river was navigable for boats as far as Salisbury. But the town developed mainly as a result of the Priory being founded in the 7th century, with the stone Priory begun in 1094 - it now has the claim of being the longest parish church in England. The ruins of the 15th century Great Chamber in the shadow of the Priory, Saltpan Marsh Reserve and a whole bevy of cafes, restaurants, pubs and other services make Christchurch a popular destination in exploring the area - it is particularly well placed for the New Forest.

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    Lulworth Cove

    by leffe3 Written Apr 2, 2007

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    Lulworth are two separate villages (East Lulworth and West Lulworth) on the Dorset coast approximately 10 miles from Corfe Castle and is most famous for its spectacular horse-shoe shaped cove and this part of the coast was recognised as a UNESCO World heritage site in 2001.

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    Corfe Castle

    by leffe3 Updated Apr 2, 2007

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    One of the most majestic of British ruins - Corfe Castle, standing proudly above the village of the same name. It's genesis is the late 10th century and Wiliam the Conqueror, who built the castle in the gap of the surrounding Purbeck Hills, an ideal location to protect Dorset and England from attack from the sea. As a royal castle, it was much favoured by King John, and the king himself built up many of the defences between 1199 and 1216. But it became less popular/important and Elizabeth I sold it to her Lord Chancellor, who eastablished it as a prestigious and sumptuous home. It remained in private hands, but, in 1646, having survived the first seige of the Civil War in 1643, the castle succumbed to the Roundheads and they promptly demolished it to the ruinous state we see today.

    It was left to the national Trust in 1981, who now manage the property.

    Open 7 days per week (except 25/26 December). Opening and closing time times vary from season to season - 10am-4pm in winter, 10am-6pm (summer).

    Admission fees
    GBP 5.30 (adults), 2.70 (kids), 13.30 (family) (reduction for public transport users on presentation of valid ticket)

    Getting there:
    142/3 Poole to Swanage bus (passes by Wareham Rail Station). Wareham is closest train station (4 miles).

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    Purbeck

    by stickynickyuk Written Feb 16, 2006

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    The area known as Purbeck is one of Dorset’s best kept secrets.
    Its beautiful dramatic coastline has recently been awarded World Heritage status.
    Designated for its stunning beauty and amazing geological formations.

    You can explore hidden coves and Jurassic cliffs which is full of a wide variety of wildlife including dolphins, puffins and many other rare and beautiful animals.

    Purbeck is delightful with small villages of stone, cob and thatch.

    High quality accommodation is abundant from hotels to rural farmhouses and there are also many self catering holiday apartments and cottages available.
    There are many nice pubs and restaurants.

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    • Farm Stay
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    Corfe Castle

    by stickynickyuk Updated Feb 16, 2006

    Corfe Castle is one of Britain's most majestic ruins.
    It is believed to be 1,000 years old, the castle dominates the skyline of the Isle of Purbeck.

    This castle has alot of history ~ eventful history, being an important stronghold since the time of William the Conqueror.
    However, the castle has not just fallen into disrepair: in 1646, following a lengthy siege, Parliamentarian forces were ordered to destroy the building, leaving the ruins we see today.

    You can learn so much more about the fascinating lives of the castle's past residents at the Castle's View family exhibition centre, a short walk from the castle.

    Also nearby is ancient Corfe Common and Creech Grange Arch.
    Which has spectacular views.

    Related to:
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    • Theme Park Trips

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    Abbotsbury Sub Tropical Gardens

    by freya_heaven Updated Aug 6, 2005

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    I love visiting Botanical and Tropical gardens, I enjoy the escapism of wandering through environments not native to Britain. The Sub Tropical Gardens at Abbotsbury are beautiful. In the grounds of the destroyed Abbotsbury Castle, the gardens were first established in1765 as kitchen garden for the Countess of Ilchester.

    It has expanded to 20 acres of both native and exotic, tropical trees and plants, ponds, streams and even an area of sculptures in the forest. Freya had a wonderful time here, pretending she was looking for Mogli and following all the path arrows like on a treasure hunt. There is a recently built colonial style restaurant & cafe to refresh yourself after your walk, plus a childrens play area plant and gift shop.

    Open all year round apart from christmans and new year, entrance £6.80. Lots of pics in my travelogues.

    Related to:
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    • National/State Park
    • Hiking and Walking

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    Chesil Beach

    by freya_heaven Updated Aug 6, 2005

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    The immense Chesil Beach is part of the Jurassic Coast, which has World Heritage Status.

    The beach stretches for 15 miles westwards from the Isle of Portland. In places the pebble beach reaches a height of 18 meters (60 foot) , its quite an impressive sight. Along the area which connects Portland to the mainland is The Chesil Beach Centre, full of facts and information about the beach, fossil finds, the local geology and nature reserves.

    There are many places along the 15 mile stretch you can get on to the beach, walk 100 meters in any direction & you will find yourself on your own to enjoy the peace.

    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Historical Travel
    • Family Travel

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    Lyme Regis

    by freya_heaven Updated Aug 6, 2005

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    Lyme Regis sits aong the World Heritage Site Jurrasic coast, known for its world famous fosslis and geology.

    The town itself is a popular holiday resort, still retains much of its olde worlde charm with a small but pleasant beach. The film "French Lieutenants Woman" was fimed here in 1981.

    A nice memory I have of Lyme Regis is going in to a second hand book shop on the hill with a grand piano in & the owner playing as people browsed.

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    • Archeology
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    Portland Castle and Estate

    by freya_heaven Updated Aug 6, 2005

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    The Isle of Portland is very heavily fortified, driving around the island you see many fort walls & buildings dotter here and there. The Isle has belonged to the Crown since Saxon times, called the Portland Estate

    The castle was built in the 1540s by Henry the 8th as a precaution aginst invasions by the Spanish and French, it only really saw any action when it was used in the Civil war. Today it is run by English Heritage, open between the March 2nd to 31st October entance £3.60. They often have events here in the season.

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Dorset Hotels

See all 433 Hotels in Dorset

Top Dorset Hotels

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