So summer is just around the corner, and you look like you need a holiday!

And unless you’ve been in deep hibernation or haven’t yet sobered up from the Christmas break you can’t help but notice all the holiday adverts doing the rounds.

The choice is endless, and the lovely old world your oyster. There’s plenty of ‘confuse your money supermarket hotel.com’ style websites to help you find the best vacation ever at a cheaper and nastier price than absolutely anyone else.

At OCEANROCKS we thought we’d make it easy. This year visit Dorset and the Jurassic Coast.
Day trip, family, friends or couples holiday, weekender, short break, big break, lucky break or spring break.  Vacation or staycation. If it’s the UK you’re after then southwest England, and the area around Dorset and the Jurassic Coast is hard to beat.

It’s a bit off the beaten track.  A little bit quirky but boasting bags of charm and a gentle sprinkling of glamour. And there’s enough to keep you going for days on end.

The Jurassic Coast and Dorset may have been awarded UN world heritage status for its unique geology and earth science, but it’s about more than fossils. It’s the backdrop to a glorious part of the world and the incredible communities which call it home.

OK, so we’re a bit biased because Dorset is OCEANROCKS’ home and is the inspiration for our creations. But here’s 10 great reasons why we think you should come visit.

1- It’s a bonafide natural wonder of the world

Dorset and East Devon is home to the Jurassic Coast It’s a United Nations Natural World Heritage Site – boasting the same status as the Great Barrier Reef and Grand Canyon.  This 95 mile stretch of coast carves out 185 million years of the Earth’s history.  It showcases spectacular scenery sculpted by the sea, rich hunting grounds for amazing fossils and is the home of colourful coastal communities. It’s an incredible and beautiful bucket-list place to visit, and an inspiration for OCEANROCKS creations.

2- Beaches – miles and miles of amazing award winning beaches

Bournemouth Beach, Dorset

You’ll regularly find Dorset and the Jurassic Coast beaches in top listings online, or Sunday travel supplements. In fact Weymouth Beach and nearby Bournemouth Beach regularly top Trip Advisor’s Traveller’s Choice Awards.   From traditional seaside resorts like Swanage to wild Chesil Bank there’s a strip to suit all tastes.  The National Trust’s Studland Beach is one of the most popular, and boasts a nudist stretch. Sandbanks at Poole has a reputation as the most glamorous, with some of the priciest real estate in the whole of the UK to match. Charmouth is great for fossil-hunting with a free to enter award-winning heritage coast centre. Kimmeridge Bay is home to a marine wildlife reserve and increasingly busy surf break.  You may even spot one of our resident seals or dolphins, and encounter a giant Basking Shark passing through.

3- Beautiful, unspoilt and inspiring

Away from a few built up areas, Dorset and the Jurassic Coast is largely unspoilt. It’s rural in nature with a healthy spread of charming market towns and villages.  The Jurassic Coast itself is a United Nations designated Natural World Heritage Site – putting it on a par with the Grand Canyon and Great Barrier Reef. Much of the landscape which sits behind is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) with rich and rare wildlife.  High chalk ridges, vales and coastal cliffs offer panoramic views and stunning vistas featuring prehistoric burial mounds, massive hillforts like Maiden Castle and rolling hills.  Explore and be inspired by a delightful and generous smattering of walks, trails and bridleways.  And Perfect for glamping.

4- Fabulous food and drink

HIX Oyster and Fish House, Lyme Regis

Dorset dialect has more than 50 words and phrases for food so it’s no wonder the county is a foodie heaven, with a fine reputation for local produce and freshly caught seafood. Many celebrity chefs agree, and there are numerous restaurants, cafes, pubs and high-end eateries to experience. Sample or take home tasty treats from farmer’s markets and food festivals.  Local boy made good Mark Hix’s Oyster and Fish House restaurant overlooks Lyme Regis’ famous Cobb harbour. Hive Beach Cafe at Burton Bradstock, next to Chesil Beach, boasts a great reputation to match, with a strong ethos of using locally sourced sustainable produce.  Or check out Portland’s glorious food mile.  There’s loads to love.  Chips by the harbour. Ice cream. Bucket loads of it. Including a Jurassic range by Purbeck Ice Cream.

The county has a burgeoning reputation for home grown drink too. Award-winning vineyards at Furleigh and Langham offer estate tours and tasters. Micro-breweries are popping up all over the county to complement local heritage brands like Palmers, Hall & Woodhouse and Piddle Valley.  And as you’d expect, there are plenty of cider producers. You could try Dorset Conker or Lilliput Gins, and the world’s only pure milk Black Cow vodka. Dorset’s food and drink is even the inspiration for OCEANROCKS Dorset Foodie T-shirt for men and women.

5- Action, adventure and adrenalin

Think the Dorset and the Jurassic Coast is just about fossils, or all sedate and gentle? Think again. It’s a watersports mecca, but a world away from the super-crammed beaches of Cornwall and north Devon. Try all types of surfing, paddle boarding, coasteering, kayaking, wild swimming or diving. And with some of the finest waters in the UK, the county is home to the National Sailing Academy – an Olympic 2012 venue and Sunseeker Luxury Yachts. But there’s also rock-climbing, mountain biking, hiking, horse-riding, quad biking and loads more to get stuck into. 

Coasteering, Jurassic Coast Activities

6- Easy to get to (sort of)

Despite being one of the few counties without a motorway, Dorset and the Jurassic Coast is reasonably easy to get to on the south coast of England. We have roads and coaches and trains. We have an airport, ferry and harbours too. The county is compact, so it’s easy to get around and explore – no matter where you stay.  OK… so to be honest it takes a bit of effort to get down here, but it’s more than worth it.

7- Charm aplenty

Dorset and the Jurassic Coast has fancy-pants charm – bucket loads of it. It’s jammed-packed full of famous landmarks from imposing Corfe Castle to Shaftesbury’s famous Gold Hill and Lyme Regis’ romantic Cobb Harbour. It boasts 1000s of ancient sites plus art galleries, museums, stately homes, gardens and picture post card villages.

Dorset’s rich coastal heritage tells of pirates, smugglers and wreckers as well as heroes, sea monsters and horrible histories. The county has been home to many a fine artist or writer – most famously Thomas Hardy – and inspired many others like author Jane Austin, artists Joseph Turner and John Constable as well as Enid Blyton. It provides the backdrop for feature films and TV programmes like ‘Broadchurch’ in West Bay, ‘The French Lieutenant’s Women’ in Lyme Regis. Most recently ‘Dunkirk’ was filmed in Weymouth and ‘Ammonite’ about Mary Anning, featuring Kate Winslet, in Lyme Regis.

The people are friendly types too.

8- Lively in the right places

If it’s night time bars and clubs you’re after, then Dorset and the Jurassic Coast has got all that with a holiday feel-good factor stacked on top. The county also hosts heaps of events and festivals including the award-winning Camp Bestival at Lulworth Castle and Great Dorset Steam Show which welcome hundreds of thousands of people.

Camp Bestival, Lulworth Castle

More rustic is Dorset’s famous World Nettle Eating Competition and quirky Knob Throwing Festival (yes, you read that right).

9- Great weather

Ah yes. Dorset has warm summers and mild winters compared to the rest of the country, and amongst the very highest sunshine hours.  But you know – it’s England so there could be a rare smattering of condensation now and then too.

10- OCEANROCKS

Us! Dorset and the Jurassic Coast is the home of OCEANROCKS. Our creations, designs and T-shirts, tops and accessories are inspired by living on the coast and loving it. They are ethically made of organic cotton and eco-friendly to reflect the values of the Jurassic Coast. Discover Our Story, and if you find us at an event this year don’t hesitate to come and say Hi. 

Related

OCEANROCKS
Online Shopping
OCEANROCKS

Shop for exclusive organic t-shirts, tops and clothes inspired by Dorset’s incredible Jurassic Coast at www.oceanrocks.co.uk and at events across Dorset this year.

Weymouth Beach
Beach
Family fun, Weymouth Beach

Weymouth’s sheltered bay, gradual sloping seabed and exquisite waters offer swimmers, bathers and water sports enthusiast’s idyllic and safe conditions to enjoy. The internationally recognised beach is a frequent host to festivals, sporting championships and a wide range of events throughout the year.

Bournemouth Beach
Beach
Bournemouth Beach

Whatever you want from a day at the beach, you'll find it all here. Whether it's chilling on a deckchair, strolling along traditional seaside piers, relaxing in a hired beach hut or just admiring miles of breath-taking coast!

Studland Bay
Beach
Knoll Beach and Studland Bay

Fine sandy beaches stretch continuously for 4 miles. The heathland behind the beach is a National Nature Reserve with many rare birds and all six British reptiles.

HIX Oyster & Fish House
Restaurant
HIX Oyster & Fish House

Perched on the hillside offering panoramic views of The Cobb and Jurassic Coast, HIX Oyster & Fish House is arguably the most picturesque spot in Dorset to enjoy locally sourced fish and seafood.

Hive Beach Café
Café
Fresh seafood at the Hive Beach Cafe, Burton Bradstock

The Hive Beach Café is located right on the beach at Burton Bradstock on the Jurassic Coast, with far reaching views across Lyme Bay and Chesil Beach. It's the perfect location to enjoy fresh, local seafood, homemade cakes or just a simple cup of tea.

Furleigh Estate Wine Tours
Vineyard
Furleigh Wine Estate

Looking to book one of the amazing Furleigh Estate Wine Tours?...If so, you have come to the right place!...Click here to get the latest information direct from the official Dorset tourism site!

Langham Wine Estate
Vineyard
Langham Estate

World class sparkling wines from the heart of Dorset! At Langham Estate, we love to share our passion for what we do and welcome visitors to the estate throughout the year. We offer various types of tour and have a tasting room, shop and café on site. Nestled amongst the rolling hills of rural Dorset, it really is a special place to visit.

Palmers Brewery
Brewery
Palmer's Brewery Bridport

Palmers Brewery is situated in the hills on the outstanding Jurassic Coast. Brewery tours take you through the historic brewery buildings giving an insight into the brewing process.

Hall & Woodhouse Brewery
Brewery
Hall & Woodhouse Brewery

Hall & Woodhouse Brewery is right in the heart of Blandford and you’ll discover a great place to eat, drink, tour and shop. On our lively and informative Brewery Tours, you can discover the generations of brewing expertise behind Hall & Woodhouse, brewers of Badger beers since 1777.

Corfe Castle
National Trust Property
Corfe Castle in spring

Adults and children alike will be captivated by the romantic Corfe Castle ruins and the breath-taking views across Purbeck.

Gold Hill
Historic Site
Gold Hill, Shaftesbury. Photo credit Rachel Baker

Come and stand on the ancient cobbles of Gold Hill, Shaftesbury a glorious setting made famous in the much loved "Hovis" advert. Take in the stunning vista down the hill and across the surrounding Dorset countryside.

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