It is no wonder that Dorset’s incredible coastline is a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site. It is truly stunning. The iconic limestone arch at Durdle Door, magnificent chalk formation at Old Harry’s Rocks and the wild barrier beach and lagoons at Chesil Beach are just a few of the dramatic natural features dotted along the coast. Whilst a bracing walk along the South West coastal path is probably the best way to admire these spectacular natural features, they are equally as impressive from the sea if you fancy taking a boat trip and viewing them from a different angle.
If you are looking to find your own piece of history you should join a fossil hunting trip. The beaches and cliffs at Lyme Regis, Charmouth and Kimmeridge are the best places to find fossils but you might get lucky anywhere along the Jurassic coast. Aspiring palaeontologists should visit Keates Quarry near Swanage where you can literally walk in the footsteps of dinosaurs. It is thought that the tracks date back 140 million years and were originally made by giant sauropods.
Fossil hunting and fascinating geological formations aside, Dorset is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the country. The clear blue waters and distinctive horseshoe bay at Lulworth Cove is a lovely spot to spend the day. Explore the rockpools, hire a kayak or enjoy a picnic as you take in the breath-taking panoramic views. It’s just a short walk from here along the South West Coastal path to Durdle Door, Stair Hole and the Fossil Forest.
Or if you are looking for long stretches of golden sand, head to the vibrant seaside towns of Bournemouth, Weymouth or Swanage. With sweeping promenades, donkey rides on the beach and literally miles and miles of sand it is easy to see why these are all popular family holiday spots. Build a sandcastle, play a game of rounders or simply sink your toes into the warm sand as you watch the boats bob about on the sea and the rest of the world go by. You can even make life easy and hire a beach hut complete with deck chairs and a gas ring. A quintessential seaside holiday doesn’t get better than this!
If you want to escape the crowds and you don’t mind a short walk there are plenty of hidden coves to explore. The smugglers cove at Church Ope near Weymouth is a great place for snorkelling and Eype’s Mouth Beach is a perfect spot for a quiet evening stroll after exploring the quirky shops in the vibrant market town of Bridport.
There is no better way to recharge those batteries than with a dose of salty water, sea air and stunning views across the sparkling sea. With fast train links from London to Bournemouth it is easy to escape for a short last-minute break to this magical stretch of coastline. Or plan ahead, bring family and friends and spend some time relaxing into the slower Dorset pace of life. Whether you are looking for a short beach break or an action-packed seaside adventure, our collection of fantastic Dorset holiday cottages by the sea will make your holiday one to remember.