Here at South Lytchett Manor, we believe that a fantastic day out in Dorset includes two things – a picturesque nature walk followed by a deliciously rewarding pub meal at the end. There really is nothing better than exploring the dramatic scenery, before stopping to rest, recuperate and most importantly, refuel!
With so many incredible footpaths to explore across Dorset it can be difficult to know which to choose. To help, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite scenic pub walks in Dorset. All include spectacular coast or countryside views and highly rated pubs and restaurants.
The Langton Matravers and Dancing Ledge path is a beautiful coastal walk which promises stunning views from the Purbeck Cliffs across the sea over to the Isle of Portland. There are plenty of incredible vantage points along the cliffs where you can stop to gaze at passing fishing vessels or snap a few holiday selfies to enter in the South Lytchett photo competition! This coastal walk has a few interesting landmarks to check out along the way, including a flat rock called Dancing Ledge. Dancing Ledge features a unique ‘swimming pool’ that was blasted into the stone for a local school. You can enjoy a dip here if you’re adventurous enough to brave the cold!
The Square & Compass Pub is one of the most iconic country pubs in Dorset. The stone-cobbled pub is ideally placed to relax and rejuvenate your energy after the long coastal walk. This traditional pub has an excellent beer garden and offers a range of local ciders and beers as well as a delicious choice of meat, vegetable and vegan homemade pies and pasties. Inside there is an interesting fossil museum, where you can see collections dating back thousands of years.
If you are looking to enjoy a walk along the South West Coast Path, then we highly recommend the Golden Cap circular walk. This walk leads you past the beautiful medieval church of St. Gabriel’s and through woodlands before leading you up the hill to the summit of Golden Cap – the highest peak on the South Coast. From this vantage point, you’ll have stunning views over the sea and the local countryside.
Image credit: Flickr – Robin Mulligan
The Anchor Inn is a fantastic, family-run pub right next to the beach in Seatown. It is the perfect place to unwind after a tiring walk up Golden Cap. The friendly team serve a variety of dishes as well as ciders, beers and cocktails with ingredients supplied by dedicated local producers. All meals and drinks served at The Anchor Inn are designed to reflect West Dorset in some way.
On cold days there’s a roaring fire creating a cosy setting to relax and warm up. Outside there’s a wonderful beer garden with far reaching views out to sea and along the Jurassic Coast.
If you’re looking for a scenic walk in Dorset, then we highly recommend the Wareham Two Rivers Walk. This easy circular route follows the River Frome and passes beautiful woodland areas, boats, farmlands and historic buildings leading into Wareham town. This walk is perfect for those on holiday in Dorset with young children as the path is flat and children will love spotting ducks at various points along the river.
The Old Granary is the perfect spot for families to take a breather after a scenic walk in nature. Located beside the River Frome, this cosy pub offers beautiful vistas of the surrounding Dorset countryside. The Granary boasts a delicious menu alongside locally brewed beers and spirits. The team serve a wide selection of meat, vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options as well as a fantastic kid’s menu.
Image credit: Flickr – daves_archive1
One of the best ways to fully take in the beauty of the Jurassic Coast is by embarking on a scenic walk across the fantastic coastal pathway between Studland and Old Harry Rocks. This walk changes drastically throughout the seasons and two visits are never the same! In the spring and summer months, you can guarantee that the fields and grasslands will be covered with a blanket of colourful and sweet-smelling wildflowers. On the other hand, a walk from Studland to Old Harry Rocks during the colder months will promise dramatic skylines and views across the moody deep blue sea below.
Whilst The Pig on The Beach isn’t exactly a pub, we couldn’t leave this incredible restaurant off the list! The Pig on The Beach prides itself on providing a ‘plot to plate’ service which means that you’ll always be served food made from the freshest ingredients. The chefs at ‘Pig on’ source these ingredients from either the kitchen garden or from local fishermen who haul in their catch from the nearby sea.
We highly recommend that everyone visiting Dorset should visit the ruins of Corfe Castle at least once! From the summit, you can look out across the traditional fairy-tale village below and out towards the surrounding greenery of the Purbeck countryside. There are plenty of routes surrounding the 11th-century ruins of Corfe Castle, so we recommend visiting Dorset Walks’ website to weigh up your options.
The Fox Inn is a fantastic 16th-century traditional pub, which can be found in the heart of the village below Corfe Castle. This charming pub has an excellent atmosphere and offers delicious home-cooked meals. What’s more, The Fox Inn has an excellent beer garden and BBQ available for guests to enjoy in the summer months. Similarly, in the winter season, The Fox Inn has an indoor wood-burning fire where you can rest after a long walk and warm up your weary feet.
The Lytchett Minster Walk is a local to us at South Lytchett Manor, and so, is a scenic pub walk to enjoy whilst staying at our Poole holiday park. This local walk leads you across the beautiful local landscape, allowing you to explore streams, woodlands and historic old churchyards. For exact directions for the Lytchett Minster Walk, please refer to our walking guide.
St Peter’s Finger is a fantastic pub to stop off and enjoy a meal either after, or even before, enjoying the local landscape via the Lytchett Minster Walk. This friendly pub serves a wide variety of classic pub food to an incredibly high standard, which is especially rewarding after a long walk in nature. We highly recommend treating yourself to a little spot of outdoor dining on sunnier days out on St Peter’s Finger’s out terrace area. What’s more, all South Lytchett Manor guests are given a voucher to redeem at St Peter’s Finger for a free bottle of wine with any purchase of two main meals!
Our award-winning holiday park is situated in the heart of Dorset, just outside of Poole. It the ideal holiday destination for exploring the Jurassic Coast and delightful towns and villages, including Swanage, Bournemouth, Weymouth and Wareham. We have a wide selection of superb accommodation options to ensure a pleasant break. Stay in one of our Glamping Pods, Shepherd Huts or Romany Caravans or book a classic Motorhome, Caravan and Camping Pitch. However you decide to stay you can make use of the excellent on-site facilities set within our tranquil grounds. We’re constantly investing in the park to ensure you have nothing but a 5-star holiday!
What a fabulous place! Our first outing in our new campervan to try it out, the campsite and facilities are... thewardrobem, Nov 2023
The best campsite I've ever stayed at, usually large complexes lose a bit of what camping is about, but not... Colin, May 2023
Great stay, very clean excellent facilities. Bus into Poole 15 mins nice shops and great walk by the Quay. Definitely... Janet, Nov 2023