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Our Pick of the Best Viewpoints in Dorset

Posted on: 30th June 2022

Park News

Dorset is home to some of the best scenery in the UK, with miles of unspoilt coastline and picturesque countryside to discover. However you decide to explore during your holiday on the Jurassic Coast, you’ll be treated to unbeatable views every step of the way.

To help you create an itinerary of things to see and do on the south coast, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite viewpoints in Dorset.

 

Old Harry Rocks

old harrys rocks jurassic coast dorset

Closest parking: South Beach Car Park, BH19 3AU

We highly recommend walking to Old Harry Rocks during a stay at our caravan and camping park. The chalk sea stacks are an impressive sight, especially when viewed from the neighbouring clifftop. From the elevated position you can enjoy spectacular views over Studland Bay and towards the Isle of Wight on a clear day. It’s incredibly popular with landscape photographers looking to capture a memorable shot.

If you’re feeling adventurous, book a kayak or stand-up paddleboarding tour with Fore Adventure from Middle Beach. One of their experienced instructors will accompany you across Studland Bay and help you perfect your paddling technique. Once you arrive at the rock formation, you’ll be able to explore hidden inlets that are inaccessible by foot. It’s a great way to experience this iconic landmark whilst trying something new.

If you’d prefer something a little less challenging, sightseeing boat trips to Old Harry Rocks are also available. They leave Swanage and Poole Quay at regular intervals throughout the day and can be booked on the City Cruises website.

 

Kimmeridge Bay

Kimmeridge Bay

Closest parking: BH20 5PF

Kimmeridge is one of our favourite places on the South Coast and well worth a visit on your camping or caravan holiday at South Lytchett. The stunning bay has a different feel than other beaches along the Jurassic Coast and is made up a series of rock ledges, rather than shingle or sand. This means that it’s ideal for rockpooling and looking for fish and shells in the shallows.

We recommend making the short walk to Clavell Tower on the headland. From this slightly elevated position you’ll have a commanding view of the surrounding countryside and out to sea. If the conditions are right you’ll be able to watch the surfers, that come to ride the little known break just outside the bay.

For a slightly different viewpoint, why not try the snorkelling trail to discover the underwater world. It is marked by buoys and open from May to September. You can even buy a laminated guide from the visitor centre which will help you identify any marine life you see!

 

Chapman’s Pool

Chapmans Pool

Closest parking: Worth Matravers Car Park, BH19 3LE

Chapman’s Pool is one of Dorset’s best kept secrets. The horse-shoe shaped cove is situated in an incredible location and boasts panoramic vistas along the Jurassic Coast and out to sea. It’s fairly difficult to reach in comparison to other beaches in the area. This means it’s seldom visited and quiet even the height of the summer months.

To get to Chapman’s Pool you’ll need to park at Worth Maltravers and hike for about an hour in each direction. The walk can be tricky in places, but easily doable with children in tow. On arrival spend some time admiring the views, then head down the well-trodden path to the water’s edge. The beach is wild and rugged, which in our opinion only adds to its charm.

Spend some time soaking up the scenery and relaxing at this peaceful location. It really is an idyllic setting to spend some quality time with your loved ones in the great outdoors. On your way back to the car we recommend making a pit stop at the Square and Compass. This cosy country pub is a local favourite and the perfect place to refuel after your walk.

 

Lulworth Cove

Lulworth Cove

Closest parking: Lulworth Cove Car Park, BH20 5RQ

Lulworth Cove is one of the most visited beaches in Dorset and for good reason – it’s absolutely beautiful. It gets extremely busy with day trippers in the summer months, so we prefer to visit in the shoulder season, when we can escape the crowds and explore at a slower pace.

The beach is situated at the bottom of a pathed track, just a couple of minutes’ walk from the car park. The water is crystal clear and there’s plenty of space to sit back and soak up the scenery, while the kids play in the rockpools at low tide.

For the best views head up the path behind the beach. There’s a small viewing area where you can admire ‘Lulworth Crumple’ and ‘Stair Hole’ – two unique rock formations that date back thousands of years.

 

Brownsea Island

brownsea island
Photo credit: Reading Tom, Flickr

Closest parking: BH15 1SB (parking at Poole Quay)

Brownsea Island is more difficult to reach than other destinations on the list, but well worth the extra travel time. You’ll need to catch a ferry from Poole Quay, but we think the boat ride is part of the appeal.

On the crossing you’ll have spectacular views across Poole Harbour and towards Sandbanks, Studland and Arne in the distance. Once you arrive you can circumnavigate the island taking in the far-reaching vistas as you go.

Brownsea Island has a mix of habitats, including a lagoon, heathland and woodland. It’s a haven for wildlife and home to red squirrels and a huge variety of birds.

 

Worbarrow Bay

worbarrow Bay

Closest parking: Tyneham Village, BH20 5DE

Worbarrow Bay is one of the best viewpoints in Dorset and the highlight of many visitors stay in the region. Park at nearby Tyneham Village and explore the abandoned village, before walking along the level pathway to the beach. From here you can climb the tout or continue up the steep ascent and follow the South West Coast Path. At the top of the hill, you’ll be treated to magnificent views of the bay below and the Jurassic Coastline in both directions.

The beach is a favourite among boat owners, with pretty yachts moored in the shallows on calm days. The water is an inviting turquoise blue colour in the summer and a favourite among swimmers and snorkellers.

Much of the area is used as a military training ground, so you’ll see abandoned tanks and targets in the distance. In the spring the grass and woodland is carpeted with wild flowers, which creates plenty of quiet spots to enjoy a picnic.

Please note – the land is owned by the Ministry of the Defence and access is not possible when military training is taking place. Consult the Gov.uk website to check whether the village and beach will be open on the date you plan to visit.

 

Portland Bill

Portland bill lighthouse

Closest parking: Portland Bill Car Park, DT5 2JT

Portland Bill boasts some of the best views along the South Coast. Stand at the southernmost tip and look out to sea, where you can watch passing yachts and fishing boats going about their day. The rugged cliffs are home to thousands of nesting sea birds that soar above the water. Don’t forget to bring your binoculars – seals and dolphins are regularly spotted along this stretch of the Jurassic Coast.

We love to visit on a cold and blustery day, when there’s a big swell and crashing waves. Sit in the Lobster Pot café and watch nature in all its glory, while you enjoy a tasty meal and hot drink.

If you have time to spare, climb the steep staircase inside the iconic red and white lighthouse. From the top you’ll experience 360 degree views as far as the eye can see.

 

Durdle Door

The stunning scene of Durdle Door not far from South Lychett Manor Caravan and Camping Park

Closest parking: Durdle Door Car Park, BH20 5PU

Durdle Door is one of the most picturesque landmarks on the Jurassic Coast and a must visit during your stay at South Lytchett Manor holiday park. Every year thousands of holiday-makers descend on this natural beauty spot to marvel at the limestone arch and take in the far-reaching views along the coast and out to sea.

You can admire the impressive scenery from the clifftop, or you can make your way down the steps and onto the beach. If you don’t fancy walking, consider booking a sightseeing boat trip from Weymouth and enjoy an up-close look at Durdle Door from water. You’ll get a unique perspective and will experience views that are impossible from shore.

Durdle Door can get busy during the summer months, so we recommend heading down early to avoid the crowds. There’s something incredibly special about this view in the morning light and it’s quite the experience to have the beach completely to yourself!

 

Gold Hill

Romantic view from the top of Gold Hill in Shaftsbury

Closest parking: Shaftesbury Road Car Park, E7 8PD

No trip to South Lytchett Manor is complete without a trip to Shaftsbury to see Gold Hill. This iconic street earned notoriety in the 1973 Hovis Bread advert and has been widely regarded as one of the best viewpoints in Dorset ever since.

The famed cobble street is located in the heart of the village and is flanked by quaint thatched cottages often adorned with colourful flowers. Little has changed over the years, so many visitors feel like they’re stepping back in time.

From the top of the hill, you’ll be treated to magnificent views of the Blackmore Vale in the distance. The patchwork fields and towering trees are quite the spectacle, whatever time of year you decide to visit.

 

Hengistbury Head

Closest parking: BH6 4EL

hengistbury headHengistbury Head is the final viewpoint on our list of places to visit during your stay at Dorset caravan and camping park. This popular beach is the perfect choice for visitors with dogs, because there’s so much space for them to run and play.

We think the scenery is beautiful here whatever time of year you decide to visit. The beach has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and is home to hundreds of species of flowers and plants.

On a clear day you can see the Isle of Wight and the needles in the distance and on cloudy days you’ll be treated to views across Christchurch Harbour. You can access a number of scenic walks, including a 4 mile circular route.

 


 

South Lytchett Manor is the perfect base for a holiday on the South Coast. We’re ideally placed for visiting points of interest along the Jurassic Coast and taking in some of the best views in Dorset. We have a variety of accommodation options to choose from, including camping pods, shepherds huts and traditional Romany Caravans. We also have spacious touring pitches if you plan on bringing a caravan, motorhome or tent.

We’re a family friendly campsite with excellent facilities, including a cafe, well stocked shop, children’s play area and spotlessly clean amenities blocks. Even dogs are well catered for with a dedicated dog shower and off lead exercise area.

Browse availability and book online or call and speak to one of our friendly reception team.

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