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Autumn Breaks in Dorset
The sunny days have passed, the kids have gone back to school and the nights are drawing in but all is not lost. Autumn is a wonderful time to immerse yourself in Dorset’s changing landscapes.
There is so much the county has to offer at this time of year. Whether you are seeking relaxation, entertainment, adventure or exciting events, you'll find everything you need for an autumn adventure.
Experience the great outdoors
Autumn is the perfect time to get out and explore before the colder weather arrives. The warmer temperatures have passed and the cool fresh air is ideal for those keen to discover more of our county. You might like to try out one of our suggested autumnal walks or hill climbs to get a real flavour of our towns, villages and stunning scenery.
Access all that is special about the Dorset coast and take a ‘walk through time’ on the South West Coast Path - England's longest waymarked long-distance footpath and also a National Trail. Stretching for 630 miles along the magnificent Jurassic Coast, it links together coastal hamlets, villages and towns providing access to all kinds of stories, including the Cretaceous period of the Earth's history.
Why not explore our gorgeous coast and countryside on 2 wheels? Pedal your way through some scenic routes and soak in the amazing views. Whether you’re looking for a gentle jaunt or an exhilarating ride, our landscapes will leave you amazed.
Take advantage of the brisk fresh air and venture out to the North Dorset Trailway. It is a splendid walking and cycling path that runs along a dismantled railway line from Stalbridge to Spetisbury via Blandford Forum, with spectacular views of the River Stour.
Enjoy the changing colours
This is a truly magical time of year to amble around one of our splendid stately homes and gardens. Take in the grandeur of some of the most spectacular homes in the country and gaze at the magnificent trees as they take on the blazing colours of Autumn. Breathe in the fresh, autumnal air as you wander through the gardens....relax, rewind and enjoy life at a slower pace!
Check out our Awesome Autumn Colours blog for the best places to see the leaves changing from gorgeous green through to the golden yellow and russet red.
This year's Autumn Colours Weekend at Sherborne Castle takes place on 22nd and 23rd October. Stop by at the tearoom for a warming drink or something to eat before exploring the castle grounds and enjoying the gorgeous views across the lake and cascade.
Events and festivals this autumn
Bournemouth Arts by the Sea Festival takes place from 30th September to 2nd October. Enjoy wonderful and unexpected characters, performances, art installations and music across this coastal town.
If you're a fan of the literary arts, Dorchester Literary Festival features workshops, poetry readings and lots of fabulous authors between15th and 22nd October.
Purbeck Film Festival is the UK's longest running rural film festival. The films are shown at various venues across the area including cinemas, village halls, hotels, restaurant and more during late October.
Between 6th and 12th November, Bridport Literary Festival hosts a number of special events and a packed programme of talks.
For a full list of events during September, October and November, take a look at our What's On guide.
Discover charming market towns
Unwind, relax and appreciate the simple life in pretty, picturesque towns of rural Dorset.
In need of more inspiration?
Be sure to book the perfect stay in Dorset using our accommodation guide, and keep an eye on out for special offers to grab yourself a great value deal.
Walking is one of the best ways to see beautiful Dorset. Discover our top walking routes.
There is mile upon mile of beautiful countryside in Dorset just waiting to be explored.
The Jurassic Coast is renowned world-wide and it's easy to see why.
All the information you need to plan a break to Dorset with your four legged friend!