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You are here: Explore the Area > Dorset and Purbeck

Durdle Door

Dorset and Purbeck

The spectacular area of the Dorset coastline has been classed as a World Heritage site and fondly known as the Jurassic Coastline.

It can be reached by car, bus, boat, bike or steam train. Guided tours are also available to explore the stunning scenery of the Jurassic Coast and the Isle of Purbeck in Dorset.

The coast between Exmouth in East Devon and Studland Bay in Dorset contains a complete record through almost 200 million years of earth history during the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous periods of geological time.

Also contained within this coast are a number of outstanding fossil localities and stunning features such as landslides, Chesill beach and impressive cliffs. This unique combination of features forms the basis for the nomination as a World Heritage Site.

Dorset and Purbeck Walks

There are fantastic walks across this picturesque region - just download any of the excellent walking routes below and get on your way!

Brownsea Island

Brownsea IslandBrownsea Island is dramatically located at the entrance to Poole Harbour in Dorset. Walks cut through mixed and pine woodland at the centre of the island, offering an excellent opportunity to see red squirrels (which are almost extinct in southern England) and red squirrel conservation in action. In winter the area is visited by huge flocks of birds including little egrets and avocets.

Download the Brownsea Island walk

Dancing Ledge

The walk highlights current and past farming practices, quarry areas and their legacy, interesting buildings and wildlife along this impressive stretch of the Jurassic Coast against the always changing backdrop of the sea. Views from here extend to the enormous wedge of limestone at Portland Bill right in the east across the bay to the start of Devon near Lyme in the west. Not all the walk is on National Trust land.
Download the Dancing Ledge walk

Old Harry Rocks

Old Harry RocksWalk across the Jurassic coastline and take in breathtaking views and unique rock formations. This walk is marked by white chalk cliffs, which are the result of 65 million years of sea erosion. 

Download the Old Harry Rocks walk


Fontmell and Melbury Downs

These Downs were bought in memory of English novelist and poet Thomas Hardy, to protect the landscape in which his novels of the Blackmore Vale are set. Here you will discover an open expanse of flowery downland, excellent butterfly populations and breathtaking views.


West Bexington

West BexingtonEnjoy a gentle autumnal walk in the heart of the stunning Jurassic Coast and discover an area rich in wildlife. Along the way, you’ll pass a beautiful stretch of Chesil beach and walk through farmland, with hedgerows bursting with wild berries.
Download the West Bexington walk


Stonebarrow Hill & Golden Cap

There are over 25 miles of paths to explore on the Golden Cap Estate, this particular walk starts at Stonebarrow Hill car park.

Download the Stonebarrow Hill & Golden Cap walks


Corfe Castle

Corfe CastleThis gentle short walk explores Corfe Common, a sandstone ridge south of the picturesque village of Corfe Castle. Look out for signs of the human activity that shaped this interesting archaeological landscape over thousands of years and enjoy the wide range of wildlife which now makes its home here.  

Download the Corfe Castle walks


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