Dorset holiday cottages

Visiting beautiful Dorset can be like stepping back in time - millions of years, in some cases! Three-quarters of the coast in this breathtaking county has been awarded World Heritage Site status, on account of its exposed rocks that mark the passing of the ages from Neolithic times. Known as The Jurassic Coast, it is a wonderful place for fossil-hunting or viewing the natural stone arches and chalk stacks that have been eroded into fantastical shapes over the millennia.

An exciting place for a family holiday! But even by present-day standards, Dorset has a different pace of life. It has no motorways and no cities, just historic market towns and chocolate box villages with thatched cottages and an old-style welcome for visitors.

The bustling seaside resort of Bournemouth boasts its own orchestra as well as a vast variety of shops, restaurants and nightlife. Pretty Weymouth, with its historic harbour, is an ideal base to discover smugglers coves and idyllic beaches, before relaxing over a meal in one of the many traditional country pubs the area has to offer.

Clean sandy beaches stretch for miles, a haven for sailing and surfing enthusiasts. Anyone who loves the outdoors will appreciate everything this breathtaking area has to offer. Walking and cycling is well-catered for, with bridleways and footpaths passing through rolling countryside and ancient forests. More than half of the region has been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Dorset is one of the most historic counties in the British Isles. People have lived here for thousands of years; it was an important Roman settlement and it played a vital part in the English Civil war. The ruins of Corfe Castle, which was destroyed by the Roundheads in 1646, can still be visited.

Accommodation is not in soulless corporate hotels but in self catering cottages or attractive family-run holiday cottage complexes. Many cottages are just a short walk from the beach, making them ideal for surfing or sailing holidays. Farm holidays are a popular way of experiencing a different pace of life and there is a wide selection of dog friendly accommodation, so the family pet does not have to miss out on all the fun.

Shown on the map and list below are the popular towns in Dorset. To see the properties near a particular town, click on a map marker or list item. Alternatively click ‘refine your search’ to browse for a particular Dorset holiday home. See Dorset for yourself by taking a look at our photo gallery.

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