Places To Visit & Things To Do
Built in 1906 to keep this stretch of the beautiful Dorset coast safe, Portland Bill Lighthouse stands 35m high. Still in working order - though now fully automatic - the Portland Bill Lighthouse can be seen at nights ensuring that no ships run afoul of the rocks. Guided tours of the lighthouse can of course be arranged and during the summer months there is a visitor centre open at the site which houses various displays on the lighthouses, wildlife, shipwrecks and the Portland stone industry which was so essential to the local economy.
Portland Caslte overlooks Portland Harbour and stands as one of Henry VIII's finest coastal forts, built in the early 1540s to protect against French and Spanish invasion. Today it provides a great day out for visitors and its audio tour, included in the admission price tells of the castle's 450 year history and the part it played in WWI & WWII.
Weymouth & Portland Sailing Academy
Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy is a centre for the sport of sailing on the Isle of Portland. The academy building is located in Osprey Quay on the northern tip of the island, and the waters of Portland Harbour and Weymouth Bay, adjacent to the site, are the main areas used for sailing. Local, national and international sailing events have been held at the site since it was opened in 2000, and in 2005 WPNSA was selected to host the sailing events at the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Lulworth Cove was formed approximately 10,000 years ago by the awesome powers of a river and the sea and is a great place to visit. A shingle beach which shelves steeply although some parts are reasonably safe for swimming. Dogs are allowed on the beach.
The Cove offers a variety of places to eat and there is a large car park (fee payable). Make sure you visit the Heritage Centre next to the car park for all kinds of information about the area and the Jurassic Coast. There are toilets with disabled and baby changing facilities at the Heritage Centre. Boat trips are available during the summer.
Founded by Dr Marie Stopes, the famous birth control pioneer, Portland Museum opened in 1930. It is housed in two picturesque thatched Portland Stone cottages, nestling above Church Ope Cove. Inspired by one of these cottages, Wessex author, Thomas Hardy, made it the home of Avice, the heroine in "The Wellbeloved", one of his last novels.
Durdle Door is a natural limestone arch on the Jurassic Coast near Lulworth in Dorset, England. This rock arch in the sea was formed as a result of the softer rocks being eroded away behind the hard limestones, allowing the sea to punch through them. A short walk from the main car park allows for easy access.
There are great shops and beaches near by at Lulworth Cove.
Abbotsbury Swanery, Subtropical Gardens & Children's Farm
Three great venues worth a visit in Abbotsbury are the Swanery, Subtropical Gardens and the Children's Farm:
Abbotsbury Swannery in Dorset is unique. This is the only place in the world where you are able to walk through the heart of a colony of nesting Mute Swans. The Subtropical gardens offer a magnificent 20 acre garden filled with rare and exotic plants from all over the world. If you would like to keep the children occupied then a visit to the Children's Farm is a great place for the under 11's. Bottle feed the baby goats am and pm, cuddle the guinea pigs, ride the ponies, race the toy tractors and have endless fun in the undercover soft play area.
The dramatic ruins of Corfe Castle stand on a natural hill guarding the principal route through the Purbeck Hills. The village lies in the gap below the castle and has some quaint village shops and pubs. One of the most photographed pubs in the UK is located here in Corfe Castle and called 'The Greyhound'. Corfe Castle is around 29miles away from our accommodation but worth a visit.