The Purbeck Isles are full of fascinating historic areas. From an 11th century castle to Victorian-era wonders, here’s our top pick of places to visit.
It had to be at the top of the list! A castle built by William the Conqueror in the 11th century, Corfe Castle is now owned by the National Trust. The village of Corfe lies beneath the castle, and is full of cute cottages, cafes and pubs. The castle itself is great for kids – as they’ll love exploring the nooks and crannies. There’s also some stunning views across the Purbecks from the castle.
Studland was used to prepare for the D-Day landings, and Fort Henry is a leftover observation bunker from these days. Definitely one to read up on for those military history buffs, the bunker is also part of the ‘Studland beach Second World War walk’ which takes in pillboxes, the bunker and ‘Dragons teeth’ used to defend against incoming enemy tanks.
Wareham is a Saxon walled town in the Purbecks, and has plenty to keep history enthusiasts intrigued. Situated on the banks River Frome, you can walk around the wall or make a visit to the Wareham Town Museum to learn more about the town’s history. There have been excavations carried out in many nearby locations, with the earliest house found dating to the 15th century BC.
When local architect George Burt decided he wanted to make the area of Durlston a high-society tourist destination, he build the ‘castle’ at Durlston. Although it is a purpose-built restaurant, it still dates back to the late 1800’s. There are plenty of interesting artifacts around the castle, including cast-iron bollards bought from London. You can walk to Durlston from Swanage, passing Tilly Whim caves as well – an added historical bonus!
The lost village has a more recent history than the previous entrants on this list; but if you’re interested in World War 2, it’s certainly an area to visit. Previously a small, non-descript farming village, Tynham was evacuated during the war to make way for arms testing. Only meant to be a temporary measure, the land was acquired after the war, and has led empty ever since. The old buildings have been restored and provide plenty of information about the time.
Castle View Cottage in Kingston Dorset is a traditional, stone built cottage with views of Corfe Castle and the Purbeck countryside. This self catering holiday cottage has three bedrooms and is ideal for family holidays in a peaceful location in Dorset.
Kingston is a small village overlooking Corfe Castle and only a short walk from the sea along the Jurassic Coast. The local beach of Chapmans Pool is a landmark of the Dorset coast.
The village also has an excellent public house and guests at Castle View cottage are only a short walk from local ale and good food.
Castle View Cottage has made many updates and improvements for the 2017 holiday season with new bathrooms, new furniture, new decoration and much more. The new photos show some of the many changes made to Castle View Cottage in Kingston since last year.
The Cart House is a self catering holiday cottage in the Dorset woodland area outside of Wareham and on the edge of Purbeck. This wonderful location is popular with walkers who explore the woods and visit the lakes. It is also a short drive from the beaches and coast of the Purbeck and the Jurassic Coast.
Here are some of the photos recently added to show The Cart House ready for the 2017 holiday season:
Burr Bank Cottage has been made ready for the holiday season with new features and fresh decorating. This Purbeck cottage in Langton Matravers is has beautiful rural views and is within a short cycle ride or drive of one of Dorset’s favourite beaches at Swanage. The Jurassic Coast can be reached via footpaths running from outside the cottage door.
Langton Matravers is a wonderful base for a self catering holiday in Purbeck Dorset. The rural location is quiet and peaceful but there is a small village shop and a local pub for daily essentials and evening entertainment. Langton is also at a central location between Swanage and Corfe Castle and is close to coastal landmarks such as Dancing Ledge, Winspit and Durlston.
Here are some of the new photographs taken at Burr Bank this week:
Purbeck House is one of Corfe Castle’s most desirable self catering holiday cottages and enjoys a large garden, spacious rooms for relaxation and a traditional Dorset Cottage ambiance. The house is only a short walk from the centre of Corfe Castle where there are excellent pubs and attractions.
Purbeck House is only a short walk from Corfe Castle Common where you can stroll peacefully with the horses and donkeys which graze the land. Views of the Castle from Corfe Castle Common are excellent and there are a number of little hills which act as view points.
Inside Purbeck House there are all the welcome comforts. The front room has a large and comfortable L-shaped sofa which allows everyone to enjoy the woodburning stove. For those looking to find a quiet space to read or relax on their own there are a number of comfortable retreats including the large conservatory, soft chairs in the bedroom or the window seats around the house.
Family meals can be enjoyed in the dining room which has room for all to meet up and talk after a busy day. The attractive space makes for a cosy place to enjoy the evening and plan the next day. When using the fully featured kitchen there is space for all to participate or some may choose to sit in the neighbouring conservatory ready to be included.
The bedrooms in Purbeck House are on the first floor and are reached by stairs from the hall or the kitchen. They are beautifully decorated rooms with many original features such as exposed beams and wooden floors but also modern conveniences such as tiled bathrooms and luxurious showers. A mix of double and twin rooms has been designed to accommodate families and friends.
Swanage is known for its beautiful bay and sandy beach. This popular holiday destination boasts sailing, promenade walks, great restaurants, diving, swimming, Punch and Judy and much much more.
This photograph of Swanage bay shows some of the different parts of the Swanage coast worth exploring.
Starting at the top of the photograph we see Old Harry’s Rock which is a dramatic rock stack at the end of the headland. You can visit the rocks by kayak but the well marked coastal path to Studland will bring you to a wonderful viewpoint looking down onto this Purbeck landmark.
The cliff at the North end of the Bay has a feature called the Octopus. It is formed by a land slide and it really does resemble an octopus.
The beach running along to the base of the cliffs is a beautiful and peaceful part of Swanage beach. The walk puts off many beach goers but is part of the attraction of this part of the bay. This remote beach has no road access and even at the height of the holiday season sees very few people enjoying the sand.
The main Swanage beach is a wonderful sandy beach with excellent water for swimming. There are swimming zones which are perfect for families and the area behind the beach has entertainments, shops, and ice-cream vendors.
The short pier is in the centre of the old part of Swanage and is popular with people as a place to sit and enjoy fish and chips from one of the excellent Fish n’ Chips places along the seafront. The pier is popular with families as it is a good place to fish for crabs in the shallow water.
Swanage Pier is a fantastic way to see Swanage bay up close and gaze down into the clear water. There is always a lot of activity around the pier and this includes sailing craft, fishing boats and divers. A lucky few spot dolphins and seals visiting the bay.
At the bottom of the photo we see two areas of park and grassland. These large park areas are wonderful places to relax on a sunny day and the high ground offers great views of the bay. At the edge of the bay there is a wonderful viewpoint which takes in Swanage bay and the coastline heading South towards Durlston.
Below is a short video showing Swanage Bay from the air:
Coastguard Cottage in Purbeck has a beautiful Jurassic Coast location with views along the coast. This wonderful cottage has a beautiful remote location and there are some new photos showing the cottage and location.
From Coastguard Cottage you are only a short walk from Chapmans Pool and there is a walk to the nearby village of Worth Matravers where there is a public house and a restaurant.
For many more photos of Coastguard cottage and some videos of the cottage and the Jurassic Coast visit Coastguard Cottage Dorset
The village of Corfe Castle is dominated by the stunning ruin of Corfe Castle which sits above the historic village and graces many views from around Purbeck. This Dorset landmark is a beautiful feature that many people choose to visit when on holiday in Southern Dorset.
Here is a new view of the castle taken from the air and we hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
Highland Cottage in Acton is a new self catering holiday cottage in the hamlet of Acton between Langton Matravers and Worth Matravers. Acton is a pretty Purbeck location with traditional Purbeck cottages made from local Purbeck stone. The Priest’s Way footpath runs past Acton and this provides an easy walk down to Swanage, where there is a sandy beach, or the the nearby Dancing Ledge on the Jurassic Coast, where there is a dramatic bay with fantastic views.
Highland Cottage is a 1 bedroom cottage ideal for a couple wishing to experience this wonderful part of Dorset.