Planning an escape to the country? Then Dorset’s stunning countryside and coastal scenery, little changed since the days of local author Thomas Hardy, offers the perfect bolt hole!
Experience Dorset throughout the seasons from bluebell bedecked woodlands in spring to the vibrant colours of sun-warmed heaths in summer, from autumn splendor to drinks around cosy pub fires in winter.
If you have an appetite for some action and adventure then you won’t be disappointed – Dorset’s beautiful countryside is packed full of it! See the Dorset scenery from a different perspective - from a quadbike, a horse or perhaps from the soaring heights of a hot air balloon!
Try a regular activity with a twist - meet new companions on a walk with a llama or a donkey. Saddle up for some off-road biking on the Sika Trail in Wareham Forest, or try the winding singletrack route through the trees at Moors Valley.
Take the opportunity to try a range of sports and activities, from orienteering to angling, rowing on the river to bushcraft, there are so many ways to experience Dorset’s countryside.
Explore Dorset’s varied countryside in search of some of Britain’s rarest flora and fauna, can you spot an elusive otter, or catch the turquoise flash of a kingfisher along the river? Keep an eye out for the dimunitive Dartford Warbler or one of the six British reptile species, all to be found on Dorset’s protected heathland.
Covered by two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, numerous nature reserves and sites of special scientific interest, Dorset is the perfect spot to enjoy Britain’s wildlife.
Discover Dorset’s picturesque valleys, sweeping downlands with their panoramic views and hidden villages, on a gentle stroll or longer walk, there are over 4,700 footpaths to chose from!
Feel the refreshing sea air on a walk to pretty Durdle Door, or a stroll up the hillside to the white horse at Osmington or the infamous Cerne Abbas Giant.
Imagine yourself treading in the footsteps of ancient warriors as you climb one of Dorset’s Iron Age hill forts - the views from the top will take your breath away!
Feel the power of Dorset’s rivers at one of our well preserved mills; why not enjoy seeing the machinery in action at Mangerton Mill?
Savour a taste of the countryside on a visit to one of the area’s farm shops or regular farmers’ markets, the producers will be proud to talk to you about the provenance of their goods.
Famously known as the heart of Thomas Hardy’s Wessex, the outstanding beauty of Dorset’s countryside has charged the imagination of many great writers, musicians, artists and movie makers.
Dorset’s rustic setting hit the big screen in 2015 as the backdrop for Thomas Vinterberg’s adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s 1874 novel, FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD, and you may recognise Dorset’s beautiful scenery from multi-award winning ITV drama Broadchurch!
Book your rural retreat!
With so much to explore a day will never be enough, so book yourself a break and start planning your mini escape to the country!