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Itinerary Planner

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

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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:

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Number of items: 89

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  1. Add East and West Lulworth to your Itinerary

    East and West Lulworth

    West Lulworth, Wareham

    The Lulworth Estate is situated in south west Purbeck and is owned by the Weld Family who live on the estate. The scenery around the area is stunning, with the estate boasting some of the most dramatic features of Purbeck and also forms part of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site. Kimmeridge,...

  2. Add Langton Herring to your Itinerary

    Langton Herring

    Dorchester

    This picturesque, rural village has a quaint appearance, with a number of original thatched cottages from the 17th and 18th century and plenty of pretty gardens. Despite its small size, the village has four Listed Buildings and the aesthetic value of this village has attracted many an artist. As...

  3. Add Yetminster to your Itinerary

    Yetminster

    Sherborne

    Yetminster is a sleepy village built almost entirely of honey coloured limestone and exudes a timeless and serene ambience. This comes partly from the age of its houses—many of which date back to the 17th century—but also from its lack of major through traffic.

    Yetminster Fair has a claim to be...

  4. Add Batcombe to your Itinerary

    Batcombe

    Sherborne

    Batcombe is a very small village hidden under the northern slope of the Dorset Downs and is surrounded by mysterious legends. The church is the subject of one of these curious tales. It is said that at one time, the local squire, who was known as 'Conjuring Minterne' due to his dabbling in...

  5. Add Frampton to your Itinerary

    Frampton

    Dorchester

    A quirky village with many attractive cottages located on one side of the street and yet nothing on the other, making it appear quite lop sided! Another odd feature of the village is the church of St. Mary with its tower corners consisting of two huge columns, one on top of the other with pinnacles...

  6. Add Chideock and Seatown to your Itinerary

    Chideock and Seatown

    Bridport

    Chideock is a small, hilly village located between Bridport and Lyme Regis and has much to offer its visitor. Together with the neighbouring hamlet of Seatown, the village lies in a nationally recognised Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty comprised of pastoral and farmed land, breathtaking cliffs...

  7. 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. ...

  8. 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...

  9. Add Morecombelake to your Itinerary

    Morecombelake

    Lyme Regis

    Sitting under Hardown Hill, Morecombelake is the home of Moore’s Biscuit Factory. The Moore family have been making biscuits since 1850 and are most famous for their traditional Dorset Knob, a hard, round, savoury biscuit typically eaten with cheese. It is said that Thomas Hardy was particularly...

  10. Add Highcliffe to your Itinerary

    Highcliffe

    Highcliffe, CHRISTCHURCH

    Highcliffe's attractive coastline,with its panoramic views of the Isle of Wight to the east and the Purbecks to the west is just a few minutes walk from the award-winning village centre. The unspoilt beaches are great for watersports, swimming and body boarding or for just lazing around and can be...