Nestled in the heart of the South West, Dorset is a county brimming with hidden treasures waiting to be discovered. From its rugged Jurassic coastline to quaint villages, the region offers an abundance of lesser-known spots that promise a serene escape from the hustle and bustle of the daily grind. Whether you’re a local or a tourist, these ten hidden gems in Dorset are sure to captivate your heart.
Fishing Trip in Lyme Regis:
- Description: Venture into the waters of Lyme Regis on a traditional fishing boat, guided by experienced local fishermen. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a first-timer, the thrill of catching your own supper amidst the gentle sea breeze is an experience unparalleled.
- Why Visit: This is a perfect way to immerse oneself in the local culture and enjoy the spectacular views of Dorset’s coastline.
- Getting There: Lyme Regis is accessible by car or public transport. Once in the town, head to the harbour to find a variety of fishing trip operators like Harry May.
- Contact: Harry May Boat Trips, Tel: 07974 796200
Rural Village Stay:
- Description: Experience the quintessential English countryside by renting a charming cottage in one of Dorset’s idyllic rural villages. Meander through picturesque lanes, soak up the tranquil ambiance and explore the untouched beauty of the region.
- Why Visit: A serene escape from the city, offering a taste of traditional Dorset life.
- Getting There: Various rural villages are scattered across Dorset, accessible by car or local bus services.
- Contact: For cottage rentals, websites like Dream Cottages (www.dream-cottages.co.uk) offer a range of options.
Old Smugglers Inn:
- Description: Step back in time in one of Dorset’s historic Smugglers Inns. With crackling fires, creaking floorboards, and tales of smugglers from years gone by, these inns are a cozy retreat with a dash of adventure.
- Why Visit: Delve into Dorset’s rich maritime history while enjoying a hearty meal and local ale.
- Getting There: Coastal towns like Poole and Weymouth host some of these historic inns, easily reachable by car or public transport.
- Contact: Explore the list of cozy Dorset pubs at www.dream-cottages.co.uk.
Fish and Chips at Weymouth Harbour:
- Description: There’s nothing quite like the simple pleasure of enjoying fresh fish and chips by the harbour. Weymouth Harbour offers this quintessentially British experience amidst a backdrop of traditional fishing boats and crabbers.
- Why Visit: For the freshest seafood, engaging sea views, and a touch of traditional British seaside charm.
- Getting There: Weymouth is well-connected by road and rail. Once there, the harbour is a short stroll from the town centre.
- Contact: Marlboro Fish and Chip Shop, Tel: 01305 776688
- Description: The Georgian seaside town of Weymouth is a beautiful blend of historic charm and seaside merriment. From donkey rides on the beach to the quaint promenade, it’s a place where simple seaside traditions come to life.
- Why Visit: For a nostalgic seaside holiday filled with simple joys and picturesque views.
- Getting There: Direct trains and buses run to Weymouth from various parts of the UK.
- Description: This postcard-perfect village is a slice of old-world England with its row of identical thatched cottages and tranquil ambiance.
- Why Visit: Ideal for a leisurely stroll, photography, and enjoying a traditional Dorset cream tea.
- Getting There: Located off the A354, Milton Abbas is a short drive from Blandford Forum.
- Description: The lighthouse on the rugged cliffs of Portland stands as a beacon over the tumultuous waters of the Portland Race, offering spectacular views of the coastline.
- Why Visit: For breathtaking vistas, a sense of adventure, and a peek into maritime history.
- Getting There: Portland is accessible by car or bus from Weymouth.
- Contact: Portland Lighthouse Visitor Centre, Tel: 01305 861233
Electric Palace in Bridport:
- Description: The Electric Palace, a vintage theatre in Bridport, invites guests into an era of red velvet seating, art deco design, and a rich programme of films, theatre, music, and comedy.
- Why Visit: For a unique entertainment experience in a historic, intimate setting.
- Getting There: Bridport is accessible by car, and there are bus services from surrounding towns.
- Contact: Electric Palace, Tel: 01308 424901
Steam Train to Corfe:
- Description: Embark on a nostalgic journey aboard a steam train from Swanage to the quaint village of Corfe. Explore the ruins of Corfe Castle and enjoy a leisurely meal at a local pub.
- Why Visit: For a journey back in time, beautiful countryside views, and a taste of Dorset’s rich history.
- Getting There: Trains to Swanage are available from Wareham, which is well-connected by rail.
- Contact: Swanage Railway, Tel: 01929 425800
Jurassic Coast Walk:
- Description: The Jurassic Coast, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, offers a walk through time. Discover fossil-strewn beaches, dramatic cliffs, and secluded bays.
- Why Visit: For a blend of natural beauty, adventure, and a touch of prehistoric wonder.
- Getting There: Various points along the coast are accessible by car or public transport.
- Contact: Jurassic Coast Trust, Tel: 01308 807000
These delightful spots offer a rich blend of Dorset’s historical allure, natural beauty, and cultural charm, promising a memorable escapade into the heart of this enchanting county. So, embark on an adventure to discover Dorset’s hidden gems and let the serene countryside, rugged coastline, and charming villages unveil the timeless charm that Dorset beholds.