Dorset is one of Britain's best holiday hotspots for many in the United Kingdom. Known as UK's World Heritage Site, the Jurassic Coast can be found in Dorset on the southern coast. Labeled also as one of Britain's areas of outstanding natural beauty (AONB), it is covered with picture-worthy cliffs, sandy and pebble beaches, fairytale castles, and rolling country hills along the scenic countryside. There are plenty of beautiful places to stay as the coast has many mansions, stately homes, and resorts. And of course, there are many activities to keep you on your toes including swimming, kayaking, hiking, and sailing to name a few.
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If you're visiting the UK for the first time or wanting to get away from the city life, look no further than Dorset. Located only 2 hours and 30 minutes away from London's city centre, there is so much to do, see, and eat that you may want to extend your vacation beyond just the weekend.
When To Go
With its ideal location along the southern coastline of England, the best time to enjoy the sandy beaches and outdoor water excursions are during the warmer months of the year, or the summer season. England's summer season begins around early June and ends in mid to late August. You'll notice the difference as the summer season begins because there will be sunny, warm weather with a lack of England's iconic rain.
If you're aiming to go during the off-peak season for less water sports and beaches but more hiking and exploring, the ideal times of the year to visit Dorset are in the spring (March to May) or autumn months (September to November). Hiking is more enjoyable during the cooler months since the hikes along the Jurassic Coast are not too short and can be challenging.
If you can afford adjusting your "weekend" from Saturday and Sunday to maybe Thursday and Friday or even Sunday and Monday, you may be able to beat the crowds. The crowds are very dense in the hotspots of Dorset during the peak season since it's a popular and beautiful place to vacation. If you don't mind that, then go for a proper weekend.
Where to stay?
There are several great resorts to stay in Dorset depending on what you're looking for. If you want to stay along the coast, the Weymouth Harbour is a picturesque place to stay with plenty of pubs, restaurants, shops, supermarkets, and even the town's fishmonger.
If you're looking for a place with a view, look no further than the Weymouth Harbour, where your rental house can look directly out into the gorgeous Marina filled with cute sailboats.
Find great rental places through Airbnb and Homeaway. Some of the most adorable and colourful places to stay are letted out right along the Weymouth Harbour.
7 Things To Do in Dorset
Durdle Door is a natural limestone arch located along the Jurassic Coast. It's the iconic piece of nature that comes to mind for most when they think of the Jurassic Coast. As a place to sunbathe, swim, and complete a long hike, there's so much to do at Durdle Door.
If you choose to hike, there are two options: easy and moderate. The easier hike can be a loop from Durdle Door to Lulworth Cove or Lulworth Cove to Durdle Door. With easily accessible walking paths and flatter trails, if you can handle the 1 hour and 30 minute hike, you can cover the 3 miles (5 kilometres).
When choosing the moderately difficult hike, start off at the west side of Lulworth Cove then walk through Durdle Door then to Bat's Head and back to the Lulworth Cove. There are signages that direct you where to go along with distinct pathways. Expect this hike to stretch about 10 miles (16 kilometres) which can take approximately 5 hours. Find excellent hiking maps around Lulworth Cove here.
As one of the few beaches in England with sand instead of pebbles, Weymouth Beach is a beautiful place to sunbathe and swim.
If you're looking for more adventure, try any of the many water sports available at the Jurassic Coast including paddle boarding, windsurfing, kite surfing and sailing.