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


  • 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

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

22 Oct

Oceanarium, Pier Approach, Bournemouth BH2 5AA

22/10/2016 To 30/10/2016

10:00 am To 6:00 pm

Discover the mystery and magic of the natural world at the Oceanarium this half term, with some of the world’s spookiest sea creatures including fearsome piranhas, a creepy croc and eerie eels!
From Saturday 22nd to Sunday 30th October additional spook-tacular family friendly activities will be hosted for all the family to enjoy including:
• MEET THE CREEPY CREATURES – face your fears and get up close to creatures such as snakes, bearded dragons and a tarantula! (Creatures are subject to change)
• PHOTO COMPETITION – take a photo of what you think is the weirdest or most wonderful creature at the Oceanarium and tag it on instagram @oceanariumbournemouth or post it on our Facebook page at for the chance to win a goody bag of prizes.

• Help FEED THE TURTLE* – throw our giant green sea turtle’s favourite food to him during our main feeding sessions on Turtle Beach.
• Take part in our TRICK OR TREAT QUIZ TRAIL- follow all the clues to discover some of our most ghoulish creatures!

• Watch our waters come alive in our DAILY FEEDS & PRESENTATIONS – including sharks, penguins and otters – why not see them all – tickets are valid all day!

And don’t forget to book in advance online at where you can make great savings of up to 25% Activities are subject to availability and may change without prior notice. * Feed the Turtle – £2 donation in aid of Oceanarium’s chosen charity. Offered on first come, first serve basis due to turtle’s dietary requirements and subject to availability.

15 Nov

BH14 0LS

15/11/2016 To 15/11/2016

4:00 pm To 8:00 pm


Apply for our Fast Track ticket at

Thinking of a course at The College? Want to find out more information? Then come to our Open Event on Tuesday 15th November from 4-8pm.

We understand that every student is different, and offer a supportive learning environment where you can be yourself. Come and chat to our students and staff, meet leading employers and take a tour of our new £28M facilities! We offer the widest choice of courses in the area so whether you’re interested in a Full-Time courses, Apprenticeships, Higher Education or Part-Time courses for adults, we’ll have the course that’s right for you.

For more information and for how to apply for our Fast track ticket please see –

11 Feb

Hamworthy Club, Magna Road, Dorset BH21 3AP

11/02/2017 To 12/02/2017

10:00 am To 5:00 pm

Bournemouth Model Railway Exhibition 2017   –  11th & 12th February 2017

The Hamworthy Club Magna Road, BH21 3AP – PLEASE NOTE that this is between Bournemouth and Wimborne NOT Hamworthy Poole!

Following another successful exhibition in 2016 sponsored by the EDNGG and everyone loving our new venue with more spacious surroundings we have taken the bold step of increasing the space available for both Exhibitors and traders alike with bookings already made for 2017 by traders and layouts from across the country.

What we guarantee….
Layouts in most, if not all, popular gauges with modelling covering all eras, European and American scenarios with steam and Diesel Locomotives.
Mature and layouts in progress on display.
Extensive trade support from across the UK: scenics; vehicles; electronics; track; rolling stock; tools, etc.

Open:  Saturday 10:00 – 17:00  &  Sunday 10:00 – 16:00

Adults £5.00  –  Kids go FREE (under 15)

AT LEAST £1.00 from each entry to “Cash 4 Kids” Charity

Newly Added Listings

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 with free delivery for orders over £25.

Morcombelake, Bridport, Dorset DT6 6EA

Kay and Julian would like to welcome you to Halsons Bed and Breakfast, located in Morcombelake, a small village close to the Jurassic coastline, between the market town of Bridport and the seaside town of Lyme Regis.
Halsons was built in the 1800s and was built mainly of flint; it stands in the centre of its own walled garden. It stands in an elevated position which allows fantastic views of the surrounding countryside.

Halsons Bed and Breakfast, although easily accessible from the A35, is tucked away down a small country lane. The house sits in its own walled garden and due to its elevated position has wonderful views of the surrounding countryside including Golden Cap. Hardown Hill, the parent peak of Golden Cap, is directly behind us. We have three rooms, two large doubles and a twin. All the rooms have been recently renovated, including new modern bathrooms with walk in showers. Each room has tea and coffee making facilities, flat screen TVs with free view channels, and a DAB radio alarm clock. As well as the large airy dining room there is a shared lounge for guest use and a patio which leads off of both the dining room and lounge. Guests have the option of eating their breakfast outside on the patio on warm days. On cooler days there is a wood burning stove in the lounge. There is free Wi-Fi and free parking.

We serve a full English breakfast as well as a selection of cereals, fruit, yoghurt and breads and tea and coffee.

We are surrounded by walking routes and bridle ways and are within walking distance of Golden Cap and the Jurassic Coast. The local bus stop is a 2-3 minute walk away with buses to Bridport, Dorchester and Weymouth in one direction and Lyme Regis, Axminster and Exeter in the other. Axminster train station is a 10 minute drive away with regular trains to London Waterloo and Exeter.

Our Dorset base is in Burley

The Carter Company’s gentle cycling holidays offer a unique way to discover Dorset. Designed with families and leisure cyclists in mind, we have a range of self-guided tours ranging from 4 to 8 nights. Pedal at your own pace along our creative, largely traffic-free routes designed by locals to help you discover the hidden gems of the area, and enjoy overnight stays in hand-picked boutique hotels. Stonehenge, The New Forest, the Isles of Wight & Purbeck, and Salisbury all feature on our routes, as do gorgeous stretches of Dorset countryside and charming little villages. With 25 years of experience, we are known for our top-notch customer service and we love sharing Dorset’s treasures with our customers! Route directions, luggage transfers, bike hire, accommodation and a full support service are included on our tours.