All you need to plan your perfect holidays in Dorset

The Visit Dorset website provides you with travel and tourist information for Dorset. So whether you are planning holidays in Dorset or coming for a short break or business trip, Visit Dorset has all the information you need:

  • explore the vibrant holiday resorts, small market towns and picturesque villages of Dorset with our Places to Visit guide
  • discover the amazing array of Things to Do while on your holidays, from sightseeing at nature reserves and stately homes to kite surfing or quad-biking

dream cottages dorset

  • find out what events and festivals are going on all year round with our constantly updated guide to What’s On in Dorset
  • choose a restaurant for a romantic evening out or a friendly country pub for a warm and hearty meal using our Eating Out in Dorset section
  • find out the best way of Getting to Dorset, be it by car, train, aeroplane or ferry
  • download money off vouchers, and pick up useful tips on dog friendly beaches, parking, access for disabled visitors, etc in the Visitor Info section

Dorset is a quintessentially English county of rolling hills and chalk downlands, with a picturesque coastline that is so important geologically it was awarded World Heritage Status by UNESCO in 2001. Known as The Jurassic Coast, the rocks of the East Devon and Dorset coastline record 185 million years of the Earth’s history – a geological walk through time spanning the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods. The craggy Dorset coastline, which stretches from Lyme Regis in the west to Christchurch in the east, also boasts many unique geological landforms such as Lulworth Cove, Durdle Door, the Isle of Portland and the shingle bank of Chesil Beach to name but a few. Over half of Dorset is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

cleaners bournemouth dorset

Nestled among the Dorset hills are charming market towns with enchanting little shops and interesting museums, as well as numerous picture-postcard villages such as the sandstone village of Abbotsbury, which has numerous tea rooms and pubs as well as the world famous Abbotsbury Swannery and the Sub-Tropical Gardens. There are also historic sites such as the famous Cerne Abbas Giant, which is carved into the chalk hillside above the village and at 180-foot-high is the largest hill figure in Britain, as well as the Iron Age hill fort of Maiden Castle, the largest hill fort in Britain and regarded by some as the largest in Europe.

Dorset’s natural beauty means walking, cycling and horse riding are popular activities, but there are plenty of other things to do in Dorset, both on and off the water. There is an abundance of family attractions, historic houses and gardens, golf courses, paintballing, even llama trekking and zorbing. There are water sports aplenty: fishing, canoeing, kite surfing, wind surfing, wakeboarding, swimming and, of course, sailing. In fact the waters off Weymouth and Portland are generally regarded as the best in Europe for sailing, which is why the area was chosen to host the sailing events during the London 2012 Olympic Games. What more could you possibly want for your holidays in Dorset?

Nightlife in Dorset tends to centre on the popular holiday resorts of Bournemouth, Poole and Weymouth. Apart from numerous pubs, bars, restaurants and night clubs, there are also multiplex cinemas, ten-pin bowling alleys, ice rinks and dry ski slopes. So you will never be short of things to do on holidays in Dorset. Many of the larger towns in Dorset also have theatres that put on concerts, plays, shows and comedy nights, including the Lighthouse in Poole and Tivoli in Wimborne. The leading venue for events as well as conferences and exhibitions in Dorset is the Bournemouth International Centre, or BIC as it is known. Pop-up cafes, restaurants, bars and shops are also common in Dorset, especially during the summer festival season. If you need to arrange a pop up shop in Dorset then shop design from Sheridan and Co could be just what you need.

Finding the perfect place to stay in Dorset should be a pleasure with the choice available – from five star hotels to romantic B&Bs to family-friendly seaside caravan parks – Dorset has them all. So, whether you are looking for accommodation in Bournemouth, Poole, Weymouth or elsewhere in the county, you are sure to be able to find something to suit your taste and budget. If Dorset isn’t for you and you’re looking to go abroad for the summer this year, make sure you you keep your health insurance up to date with european health insurance card renewal​ to stay safe wherever you go. Alternatively, if you fancy visiting the United States, make sure you have your USA esta visa in place.

Businesses in Dorset can also benefit from using this website: to advertise their products and source suppliers. Any Dorset-based business that wants to improve its customer service should look into the numerous and highly targeted courses offered by the Institute of Customer Service.

Newly Added EventsView All

21 Jul

BH15 4DH

21/07/2018 To 22/07/2018

12:00 pm To 8:00 pm

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Tickets will be available on the website shortly

Sorted in Dorset, an initiative set up by the team behind the fantastic Party in the Park, is bringing together once again the local communities in a bid to embrace both Bournemouth and Poole, and the intention to take this event further into the hinterland of Dorset with their latest twist on family enjoyment, showcasing the huge range of talent we have here on our doorstep be it deepest darkest Dorset or embracing our phenomenal coast line.

Join us for the first event in Hamworthy Park on 21st & ‪22nd July, where you will be able to enjoy the tastes of locally produced food and drink whilst listening to talented resident musicians. With plenty to keep the whole family entertained, including children’s activities, we’ve got you sorted for something to kick start the summer!

The festivities continue during the August bank holiday weekend, where Shelley Park will be transformed into a hub of local culture. Taking place ‪on Sunday 26th & ‪Monday 27th August, this will be the perfect way to round off the summer break!

These two brilliant events will be helping raise funds for local causes including Friends of Hamworthy Park and Dorset’s Children’s Foundation.

Tickets will be available to purchase direct from the website shortly, so keep an eye on social media for updates!

13 Mar

Brewhouse & Kitchen, 152-154 Commercial Road, Bournemouth, BH2 5LU

13/03/2018 To 13/03/2018

6:30 pm To 8:00 pm

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Visit the Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/130626891095143/ Or Access the event directly on eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/free-spanish-taster-lesson-level-1-tickets-43554239904  

Fun, interactive introduction to Spanish aimed at beginners.

Bring a friend, buy a drink from the bar and enjoy learning Spanish in a relaxed environment.

After the class there will be an opportunity to sign up for a 6 week ‘Holiday Spanish’ course. The course total is £100 with an early bird price of £90 if you pay on the day. More details will be given at the end of the taster session

24 Mar

The Lighthouse, 21 Kingland Road, Poole, BH15 1UG

24/03/2018 To 24/03/2018

7:30 pm To 9:30 pm

: Gala Concert by Wessex Youth Orchestra

Violinist, Dunja Lavrova performs with the Wessex Youth Orchestra

Violinist, Dunja Lavrova joins the national award winning Wessex Youth Orchestra, to celebrate its musical talent at The Lighthouse on March 24th in a colourful showcase Gala Concert, with music by Rimsky-Korsakov, Borodin and Dvorak.

Conductor, Susanna Riddell said, “We are delighted to be joined on this occasion by Russian violinist, Dunja Lavrova for a performance of Dvorak’s Violin Concerto Op. 53.”

The Lighthouse, Poole, Saturday 24th March from 7.30pm.

 

 

Newly Added Listings

Insight Activities are a woodland based outdoor activity company specialising in Archery, Crossbows and Axe Throwing.

We are based in Tolpuddle Dorset.

Everyone welcome, pre-booking essential.

No previous shooting or throwing experience required.

Great fun for all, ages 6+ for Archery in Dorset, 12+ for Crossbows, 13+ for Axe Throwing.

www.insightactivities.co.uk

Purple Nanny – Cruelty Free Shopping.

Local shopping at affordable prices. Each product is carefully selected to ensure value for money whilst taking care that no animals are harmed in the manufacture of them.
Purple Nanny has a variety of items for you to try. Why not take a look at the vegan, handmade nail polish by Liv Oliv or dog food produced by Devon based Forthglade.
Purple Nanny also sells handmade bath bombs by Gifts By Little Miss and haircare by Faith In Nature.
With hundreds of products available which you can buy online or instore Purple Nanny is your one stop local shop.

Visit www.purplenanny.co.uk today

Contact the Purple Nanny on 07765021555 or by email at purplenannyeco@outlook.com

PO BOX 9120, Weymouth, Dorset DT4 4GR

New! OCEANROCKS celebrates your love affair with the coast, seaside and water. Shop for organic t-shirts, tops and clothes for families inspired by Dorset’s incredible Jurassic Coast.

Stunning bespoke designs printed on organic, environmentally friendly and ethically produced garments.

Discover great things to do and places to discover off the beaten track with OCEANROCKS Explorer and our Dorset blog.

OCEANROCKS is a proud business partner of the Jurassic Coast Trust – guardians of the UN World Heritage Site.

Safe, secure online shopping at www.oceanrocks.co.uk with free delivery for orders over £25.