Walking in Dorset
Want to feel the sun on your face, the wind in your hair and escape the hurly burly of modern life?
Dorset walks are internationally renowned and give you the chance to explore rolling hills, peaceful country lanes, dramatic clifftops and woodland trails.
The county's coast and countryside boasts over 3000 miles of signposted footpaths, bridleways and byways to hike, ramble or stroll. These paths meander and intertwine across Dorset, linking photogenic villages, cosy pubs, lush meadows and rocky coves. Each turning leads to a new adventure…
Relax and unwind
Dorset walks offer an exceptional mix of awe inspiring coastline, ancient woodland, rolling chalk downlands and secluded river valleys. It makes for a true rambler’s paradise and there are walks of all lengths, for all abilities. With just over half of our landscape designated as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) you're assured the perfect backdrop for your walk!
Tread in the footsteps of smugglers along one of the world’s most famous rambles, the South West Coast Path. Enjoy the views as you imagine the thrilling tales of smuggling and dastardly deeds made famous by the J. Meade Faulkner novel, Moonfleet.
For families, the Rodwell Trail is a level walking route teeming with wildlife following the track bed of the old Weymouth to Portland Railway.
The Sika Trail is a popular 7 mile circular walking and cycling through Wareham Forest. Stroll through the pine trees and heathland and if you're lucky you might spot a Sika Deer which the trail is named after.
If you’re a seasoned walker and crave the challenge of a long distance hike, we have plenty of trails to keep your step count in check. The Dorset section of the Wessex Ridgeway runs from Ashmore in the north, past ancient hill forts and the Cerne Abbas Giant on its winding way to the coast at Lyme Regis, and the Stour Valley Way follows the magnificent River Stour on its journey to Christchurch Harbour.
Guided Walks in Dorset
There are many opportunities to join guided Dorset walks and tours are available on a wide variety of themes. Whether you're looking for Nordic walking, a history tour or want to go fossil hunting, we've got the perfect guided tour for you.
Take a guided ghost tour and learn the dark secrets of Dorset’s towns as you tiptoe down narrow streets and alleyways.
Why not explore somewhere new with a fun quiz? Dorset Treasure Trails offer easy to follow routes with clues to crack as you take in the fascinating sights along the way.
Or, get acquainted with a friendly donkey or horse and take them along with you as you wander coast and countryside. They will even carry your picnic!
Walker friendly accommodation
Now we’ve convinced you that Dorset is one of the finest counties in England for walking and walking themed holidays, here are some suggestions for places to stay.
Accommodation in Dorset is plentiful and varied:
Dorset also provides plenty of accommodation that is part of the Walkers Welcome Scheme. These properties offer walkers all the facilities you may require after a long walk in Dorset.
It's not all about walking
As Dorset is such a fantastic destination for any time of year, we thought it would be a good idea to tell you a little more about what Dorset has to offer!
Last but not least, on your walking travels, why not drop by to the famous filming location of ITV's smash-hit crime series 'Broadchurch' and see for yourself why its amazing landscape and stunning views played such an integral part in the TV series.
There is mile upon mile of beautiful countryside in Dorset just waiting to be explored.
Walking is one of the best ways to see beautiful Dorset. Discover our top walking routes.
Read our blog about reconnecting with the land beneath your feet and discovering Dorset's history.
Maps of Dorset towns plus Town Visitor Guides.