Swanage is the perfect getaway destination for all seasons. Swanage is located on the Isle of Purbeck in Dorset and is the Eastern Gateway for exploring the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.

Visit the award winning and family friendly Swanage beach

The view from Swanage Banjo Pier towards the sandy beach and beach huts

Popular with all generations and evoking nostalgia from childhood holidays, Swanage Beach has large stretches of golden sand and clear unpolluted water.

Taking a paddle, collecting sea shells and building sandcastles are things that children will remember about their trip to Swanage for years to come. Why not hire one of the colourful beach huts to make your holiday extra relaxing?

Make happy memories

Crab fishing at Swanage's stone jetty on the Dorset coast

Family fun can be enjoyed by taking boat trips, visiting quality local attractions, learning to kayak or playing mini golf or tennis together. Enjoy the simpler things in life like crab fishing from Swanage’s Stone Quay. Search our website for things to do.

Be car free

City Cruises Poole's Solent Scene boat arriving at Swanage Pier in Dorset

Arrive in style on the Swanage Railway by steam train or catch the Purbeck Breezer open top bus from Bournemouth, both with amazing views of the surrounding landscape. Cruise from Poole Quay to Swanage Pier for a scenic tour of the coast along the way. 

Stroll around the shops

Swanage's Commercial Road shops and cafes in Dorset

A mix of high street brands and small, independent shops selling everything from sausages to souvenirs, you will be a satisfied shopper in Swanage. Wander around quality art and craft galleries to find a special purchase to remind you of a wonderful time in Swanage. Browse Swanage Shops online.

Dine by the sea in Swanage

Five people enjoying food and drinks overlooking Swanage Bay in Dorset

After you’ve worked up an appetite shopping, take a break to enjoy some tea and cake or lunch in one of the street side cafes. Sample the local fare in the quality bistros, seaview restaurants, traditional pubs and coffee shops. Here you’ll find something for every taste.

Soak up the Swanage Culture

Families watching a traditional Punch and Judy puppet show on Swanage beach in Dorset

Immerse yourself in a range of creative festivals including the open studios of Purbeck and Dorset Arts Weeks.

The town has a central Theatre and Cinema offering a variety of plays, shows and pantomimes throughout the year. Follow the Swanage Seen Art Trail and learn about artists who were inspired by their Swanage surroundings.

Ride on the Swanage Railway

Swanage Railway steam train near Corfe Castle in Dorset

Catch the picture postcard branch line to the seaside. Steam trains run through the beautiful Purbeck countryside and past Corfe Castle to the sandy beach of Swanage. Look out for their special events and dining trains too.

Explore Durlston Castle and Country Park

Anvil Lighthouse and Durlston Country Park in Dorset

Spectacular cliff top walks and a Castle Visitor Centre help you discover the geology of 185 million years of Earth’s history. Durlston can be enjoyed 365 days of the year, highlights include wild flowers, migrating birds and a breath-taking walk to the lighthouse. Also enjoy a range special events and exhibitions. This countryside paradise is just 30 minutes walk from Swanage Town Centre or use the seasonal bus service.

Promenade on Swanage Pier

Sunrise at Swanage Pier in Dorset

The Pier is an integral part of the character of Swanage, reflecting its Victorian splendour and rich heritage. Enjoy a stroll with the finest views of Swanage or catch a boat for a scenic boat trip along the coast. Drop in to the free visitor centre to find out more about the history. 

Step back in time at Swanage Museum

Wellington Clock Tower overlooking Swanage Bay in Dorset

Uncover the story of Swanage from Dinosaurs and the Jurassic Coast to seaside resort, stone trade and the Second World War at Swanage Museum.

No visit to Swanage is complete without walking a stretch of the Jurassic Coast. Recognised by UNESCO for its outstanding geology, our coastline is part of England’s only natural World Heritage Site. See spectacular geological features like nearby Old Harry Rocks.

Try a new activity

Three men with fishing rods on Swanage Pier in Dorset

Opportunities to enjoy activities in Swanage are endless. The numerous local walking trails are celebrated during the annual Swanage and Purbeck Walking Festival.

Join one of the outdoor adventure specialists and have a go at diving, sea fishing, coasteering, abseiling, climbing, paddleboarding or kayaking. Search for activities in Swanage. 

Whatever the weather, Beach Gardens Sports Park with putting green, tennis, table tennis and outdoor bowls is great family fun.

Find some festival fun

Fireworks over Swanage Bay in Dorset

Swanage has a year-round calendar of events to keep you entertained in all weathers. Many of the local attractions organise events during school holidays to keep the whole family entertained and there are lots of events within easy reach of Swanage.

For music lovers, the town has a fantastic range of festivals which everyone can enjoy, including Blues, Jazz and Folk. The Fish Festival and Walking Festival are also popular with locals and visitors alike.

The Regatta and Carnival Week offers the lively atmosphere of a Caribbean-style carnival plus spectacular fireworks, music and dancing.

A day trip is never enough!

Extend your stay and book a break in Swanage. Whether you’re looking for a holiday cottagehotel, B&B, hostel, camping park or a campsite, we have it covered in Swanage with quality short breaks by the sea.

Check availability and book online.