To provide you with the best experience on this website, cookies are used. By using the site it's assumed that you're happy with our use of cookies. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time. More info on cookies.
Allow cookies

Search Towns & Villages

Type:
Location:
Keyword:

Itinerary Planner

Plan your visit to Dorset using the '+ Itinerary Planner' button. Add to Excursion

Select items throughout the site to build an itinerary of your choice.

A pretty Dorset village

A pretty Dorset village

Dorset Villages

Dorset is home to some of the prettiest villages in England.

If you’re looking to wander down winding country lanes lined with sweet scented wild flowers, tinkling streams, thatched cobb cottages before chancing upon a quaint little village pub or tea room, you’ve come to the right place!

Picturesque Dorset Villages

One of the most popular villages in Dorset is Abbotsbury, a picture postcard village set in the Dorset AONB countryside.

Whilst here, visit the famous Swannery, or climb to St Catherine’s Chapel for tremendous views along Chesil Beach and the Jurassic Coast.

You’re in for a treat if you visit West Lulworth as the small hamlet is dotted with little trinket shops and ice cream parlours as it meanders down to the stunning Lulworth Cove.

Milton Abbas is also well worth a visit, with its uniformed line of thatched white cottages. Visit in July for the 18th Century Street Fair and be whisked back in time.

And set in the heart of Cranborne Chase, once a mediaeval hunting estate, are the intimate, rural villages of the Tarrants, Chrichels and the Gussages.

 

Quirky village names

Dorset villages have their fair share of strange place names and many of these are often cause for much tittering.

Whilst in Dorset you may find yourself in the Piddle Valley and stumble across the villages of Piddlehinton and Piddletrenthide.

Whilst strolling in the beautiful Purbecks, you may see a signpost to Happy Bottom. And, what other English county has such evocative village names as Whitchurch Canonicorum, Rhyme Intrensica or Gussage All Saints?

There is one village name in Dorset which is far too rude to mention here but bound to cause a few laughs, why not come and visit and see if you can find it (we'll give you a clue, it's near Bere Regis).

 

Villages full of folklore and history

Each Dorset village has its own character, history, individual charm and tale to tell.

Visit Cerne Abbas and see the famous club wielding chalk giant, imagine historic battles as you stand in Corfe Castle with its romantic castle ruins, stand under the Martyrs Tree at Tolpuddle, birthplace of the Trade Union and hear the whispers in the walls at Tyneham – Dorset’s ghost village.

Make a wish at the Upwey Wishing Well, hunt for fossils at Charmouth, visit Thomas Hardy’s Cottage in the forest at Higher Bockhampton or ascend to Ashmore, the highest village in Dorset.

 

Experience the rural ideal and explore Dorset’s villages

As you can see there are many quirky little villages in Dorset, each with their own history, claim to fame and individual mysteries just waiting to be discovered and unless you spend a night or two, there’s no way you will be able to see them all!

Fortunately, there's lots of great accommodation close to each of these villages so why not take advantage, simply click the links below to get started:

Number of items:

Number of items: 89

, currently showing 1 to 10.

Sort By:
  1. Add Maiden Newton to your Itinerary

    Maiden Newton

    Dorchester

    Maiden Newton is a town-sized village located on the confluence of the Rivers Frome and Hooke. It was once an old market town but, overshadowed by neighbouring Dorchester, instead developed as a light industrial village. Today, although not classically picturesque, Maiden Newton is a pleasant blend...

  2. Add Melbury Osmund to your Itinerary

    Melbury Osmund

    Sherborne

    This quiet and unspoilt village is where Hardy’s parents were married in 1839 and the marriage certificate can be seen framed on the wall in the church. At the northern end of the footpath through the churchyard is a thatched house where Hardy’s mother is thought to have lived when she was a child....

  3. Add Winterborne Abbas to your Itinerary

    Winterborne Abbas

    Dorchester

    Winterbourne Abbas is situated just south west of Dorchester and is a pleasant village with little bridges to the 17-19th century stone, brick and flint cottages. There is a small stone circle near the village on the edge of a beech wood called 'The Nine Stones' which are most probably early...

  4. Holt

    Add Holt to your Itinerary

    Holt

    Wimborne

    Several scattered hamlets with wonderful names; Gods Blessing Green and Pig Oak, make up Holt, itself centred around a large green faced by pretty thatched cottages and a traditional village inn.

    Holt is recorded in the Domesday Book as the 'foresta de Winburne', a royal chase and forest. Known...

  5. Add Burton Bradstock to your Itinerary

    Burton Bradstock

    Bridport

    Burton Bradstock is a large and pretty village, famous for its position along the Jurassic Coast with its iconic sandstone cliffs marking the start of Chesil Beach. The cliffs offer one of the finest examples of the distinctive, alternate hard and soft layered geology of the Bridport Sands, which...

  6. Add Sandford Orcas to your Itinerary

    Sandford Orcas

    Sherborne

    Sandford Orcas lies in a valley approximately 2½ miles north of Sherborne and was the crossing point of the confluence of three streams that rise in the Parish. in Saxon times, the water was forded over a sandy bottom from which the name SandFord derives. In the century after the Battle of...

  7. Add West Bexington to your Itinerary

    West Bexington

    Bridport

    West Bexington is a small coastal village on the Chesil Beach, between Burton Bradstock and Abbotsbury surrounded by National Trust land. Although the village is small, West Bexington has a lot to offer its tourist. Visitors to West Bexington can enjoy year round sea fishing off the beach,...

  8. Add Bere Regis to your Itinerary

    Bere Regis

    Wareham

    Bere Regis is found in north west Purbeck between Dorchester and Poole and is a short distance to Moreton and Bovington. The beautiful Athelhampton House is just a short drive away on the edge of Puddletown village.

    The village features St John the Baptist church which has a history dating back...

  9. Add Eype to your Itinerary

    Eype

    Bridport

    Meaning “steep hill”, Eype has been described as one of West Dorset’s most beautiful villages. It is easy to see why, as the village is full of pretty thatched cottages with country gardens, dating back to the 18th and 19th centuries. Situated just West of Bridport on the coast, Eype has a...

  10. Horton

    Add Horton to your Itinerary

    Horton

    Wimborne

    Lying between the rivers Allen and Crane, the village of Horton has an attractive church and a village pub and shop on the outskirts.

    The village's unique landmark, Horton Tower, was built in 1750 by Humphrey Sturt as an observatory to watch the movement of deer when he could no longer ride. ...