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The best beautiful places you can’t miss when visit Jurassic coast, Dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

The Jurassic Coast is one of England’s most beautiful coastlines that stretches 95miles from Dorset to Devon. It is England’s only UNESCO World Heritage site and over 12 million people per year travel to the South Coast to visit parts of it.

This area is especially popular in the summer months, when locals flock from cities across the UK to the white sand beaches of Bournemouth and Poole, and it’s not just locals, a day or multi day trip to the coast is on many tourist itineraries.

I have spent lots of time on the South Coast of England, and while I recommend spending a few days here to see it all at a leisurely pace you can also see a lot in just one day on Jurassic Coast roadtrip!

In this guide I share list of the best beautiful places you must visit along the Jurassic Coast, as well as a one-day itinerary and a three-day itinerary to help you plan your getaway.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

1. Bournemouth Beaches

Every summer the beaches of Bournemouth are jam packed with locals and tourists who want to enjoy the white sand beach, pleasant water and British summertime.

The coastline stretches for 9.5miles from Sandbanks via Boscombe and Bournemouth, and if you want to enjoy a quieter area then I recommend stopping at Hengistbury Head Beach which sits at the most eastern end of the beach. Here you can take in the stunning views on an easy 20-minute hike along the rugged clifftop.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

While in the Bournemouth area you should also make a stop at Bournemouth Pier, where the beach is lined with colorful beach huts.

My favorite spots for lunch on the beach is Branksome Beach restaurant, which is midway between Bournemouth Pier and Sandbanks, it is possible to walk but I recommend driving and parking behind the restaurant. Another popular beach front spot is Vesuvio, an Italian restaurant at Alum Chine.

2. Sandbanks 

This area is one of the  best beautiful places in Jurassic coast, Dorset. Sandbanks is perhaps one of the most popular areas to visit in Dorset, and it is famous for being one of the most expensive areas to buy property in the world!

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

You can couple a visit to Sandbanks beach with a trip to see Poole Harbour. There is street parking available for free alongside the harbor or you can park in the visitor parking which gives easy access to both the beach and the harbor.

Typically, the beach is a little quieter at Sandbanks than at Bournemouth and tends to attract more locals from the area.

3. Poole Harbour

Poole Harbour is the second largest natural harbour in the world attracting thousands of visitors every year who want to enjoy watersports and boating activities. The most popular activities are wind surfing, kayaking, paddle boarding and kite surfing.

You can bring your own equipment and hop in the water or rent from one of the many watersport’s shops. The Watersports Academy offers courses and training, as well as equipment rental if you want to go out on your own.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

Poole Harbour is also great area to stop for lunch, I recommend Rick Stein which has views over the harbour, Oriel or the Haven Hotel where you can enjoy lunch or afternoon tea. Don’t miss this beautiful places in Jurassic coast, Dorse

To get views from the water of the harbour you can take the Poole Harbor and Islands Cruise. This 70-minute harbor cruise starts at Poole Quay, a charming area with old buildings and buzzing atmosphere. From here the cruise goes past Brownsea Island, home to wildlife and picturesque Brownsea Castle and then onto the Sandbanks Peninsula and the luxurious houses of the ‘Golden Mile’. The cruise continues on to tour other islands: Green, Furzey, Long and Round.

4. Studland Bay 

Studland is a village on the Isle of Purbeck and can be reached either by road or by chain link ferry from Sandbanks. As one of great place you need to visit in Jurassic coast, Dorse.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

The ferry starts operating at 7am and runs at 20 and 40 minutes after the hour. The ferry ride is less than 5 minutes, but in the summer months you may be waiting in a queue for some time. If the queue is too long, reset your navigation and drive there instead which will take about 30 minutes.

Once on the Isle of Purbeck you will pay a National Trust entrance fee and then you can drive and park at any section of the stunning beach. South Beach is the smallest of the beach areas and is very popular with locals. Middle Beach is sheltered by low cliffs, and while Knoll Beach, backed by a wilderness of dunes. This area also has a 1km designated naturist area.

Studland is another popular watersport area, and there are also lots of beautiful walks and hikes that take you along the dunes, to Old Harry Rock and Fort Henry. For a full list of the walks in this area go to the National Trust site.

If you have plenty of time in Studland, then make sure to stop at the popular Pig On The Beach restaurant and if you are planning an overnight visit there is also a charming hotel that the restaurant is attached to.

5. Swanage 

Swanage is at the eastern end of the Isle of Purbeck and just a couple of miles from Studland, making it an easy stop during your visit to the area.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

Swanage is another coastal town overlooking the ocean and represents a great place to base yourself from to see the surrounding areas, visit Old Harry Rock and Studland. But if you are just passing through then a main attraction in the town is the railway station where you can watch heritage steam trains leave the station throughout the day.

For an extra special experience, you can book a journey on the train and enjoy lunch or an evening bistro.

6. Corfe and Corfe Castle

The village of Corfe is most popular for its castle ruins which attract visitors year-round.

The village itself is picturesque, and a charming example of traditional English villages and architecture. While the castle is a must visit, I also recommend wandering around the village, stopping at Corfe Castle Village Bakery, the sweet shop, Corfe Castle Model Village and the pretty railway station. In fact, Corfe is on the same line as Swanage so you could travel by train from Swanage to the Corfe on one of the steam trains.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

There are plenty of vacation rentals in Corfe, or you can stay at The Banks Arms Hotel or Mortons Manor.

7. Durlston Castle And Country Park

Durlston Castle and Country Park is another great spot along the best beautiful places inJurassic Coast. Nestled atop of the cliff edge you get excellent views from the castle, and from the trails around the castle.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

The castle itself has a cafe, gallery and shop but the surrounding nature trails that meander through the 320 acres of countryside are arguably the main attraction! Here you can see the historic Great Globe, coastal limestone and walk out to the lighthouse.

8. Lulworth Cove

Lulworth Cove (and Durdle Door) is arguably the most famous and most visited part of the best beautiful places Jurassic Coast.

The cove was formed by the combined forces of the sea and a river that was swollen by melting ice at the end of the last Ice Age. The area is world famous for its unique geology and landforms, these include the Lulworth Crumple and Stair Hole.

Many visitors come to marvel at these spots, and others come in search of the turquoise blue sea and typical English fishing village feel.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

Visiting Lulworth Cove is typically done in conjunction with a visit to Durdle Door, the two are right next to one another so make for a great day out.

You can park at Lulworth Cove or Durdle Door, I recommend parking at Lulworth Cove exploring the village and then hiking up over to Durdle Door. This is an uphill hike so make sure to wear appropriate shoes.

During your time in Lulworth make sure to visit The Dolls House which is a charming tiny cottage turned into a sweet shop and get lunch at The Lulworth Cove Inn which is also a hotel. And if you are planning to stay in the area there are a couple of other hotel options The Limestone Hotel, Lulworth Lodge and Bijou B&B.

9. Durdle Door

Durdle Door is a natural limestone arch that can be viewed from the cliff top coastline, or down at the beach. To visit there is a car park area just 900 meters from Durdle Door that you can park at for £10 for the day.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

From here it is a fairly gravelly walk downhill to the beach, so pack some good shoes for the walk. As mentioned under Lulworth Cove you can also walk over to Lulworth from Durdle Door which is all downhill, but you will have to make the uphill walk on the way back.

One of my favorite activities in Durdle Door is to kayak from Lulworth Cove, along the coastline to Durdle Door. The kayak takes you through the natural arch and ends on the beach at Durdle Door where you can swim and relax before making your way back round to Lulworth Cove.

Best Time Of Year To Visit

The best time to visit Dorset is over summer June – August when the weather is best, and you will get the prettiest views of the coastline. However, since this is the best time to visit it can be extremely crowded with locals and people coming down from London so a visit in the shoulder months May or September may be better.

best beautiful places jurassic coast dorset

But this area can be visited year-round, and there is no bad time to visit the Jurassic Coast!

Author :  WeAreTravelGirls blog

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1 comment

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