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    West Dorset Countryside

    As well as the jurassic coastline, West Dorset also has the most fabulous countryside to explore.

  • Playful lambs

    Playful Lambs

    Lambing season is usually earlier in West Dorset than the rest of the UK. Keep a look out for these playful little things!

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Places to visit near Warren House

Whether you want to relax, walk the hills, stroll along the beach, or enjoy a good meal, there’s always a lot to do near Warren House Bed and Breakfast.

Chideock and Seatown – the perfect walking centre

Chideock and SeatownChideock (pronounced “Chidduck”) is a village graced with country cottages built of glowing golden sandstone and thatch, and together with its twin hamlet of Seatown, is set in the West Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Overlooked by the familiar pine-topped silhouette of Colmer’s Hill to the east and the soaring mass of Golden Cap to the west, the wooded and hilly landscape is criss-crossed with many footpaths, affording glorious viewpoints to the rambler.

Those wanting spectacular coastal views only have to go to Seatown a mile away, where you can join the South West Coast Path, perhaps climbing almost 200m to the summit of Golden Cap – the view from the top is well worth it! Fossil-hunters can find belemnites and ammonites washed out of the cliffs onto the beaches, whilst the less energetic can relax and enjoy good food at one of three local pubs.

Charmouth – gateway to the Jurassic Coast

Set in a dip in the middle of the Jurassic Coast, Charmouth is the perfect place to enjoy traditional seaside fun, with ample car parking. Beach huts and a café are set beside an unspoilt sandy beach and the mouth of the river, just right for lazing in the sun, eating an ice cream, boating, paddling or swimming.

Charmouth Heritage The Heritage Coast Centre next to the beach has fossil displays to help you identify your finds, and also offers guided fossil walks. You can find belemnites, crinoids, shells and lovely little pyritised (golden) ammonites if you know where to look, and there are also rock pools to explore. The centre of the village is also worth a visit, having several good places to eat, gift and homeware shops, a bakery, a pharmacy, and food and general stores for those beach essentials.

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West Bay – the home of Broadchurch

neil barnes - west bayThe stunning golden cliffs and shingle beaches of West Bay will be familiar to fans of Broadchurch as the location for much of the action in the TV series. West Bay is the harbour for nearby Bridport, and shelters local fishing and leisure boats, overlooked by the iconic Arts and Crafts Pier Terrace and strikingly modern Quay West.

Crabbing is a popular pastime from the pier, or you can go on a sea fishing trip to catch your own mackerel. Other marine pursuits on offer include a thrilling RIB trip to Lyme Regis or along the Jurassic Coast, or a gentler canoe adventure on the River Brit.

There are plenty of places to sample local fresh seafood and other produce in the resort, including the unusual Station Kitchen in a railway carriage, the award-winning Riverside Restaurant, and open-air kiosks selling traditional seaside fare.

Bridport – a lively market town

Bridport is famous for its wide streets, formerly used for rope and net making, which now host a thriving Wednesday and Saturday market, with everything from fresh local produce, arts and crafts, to vintage and bric-a-brac stalls for the dedicated browser.

bridport bucky doo squareIndependent shops, cafés, gastropubs and restaurants line the main streets of the town, as well as some well-known names like Waitrose. The Artisan Quarter is home to many studios that you can visit, and the nearby Alleyways Antiques is full of vintage and retro collectables and furniture.

The November Literary Festival sponsors an internationally-known writing competition, and brings visitors and speakers from all over the world; and on a lighter note, a September Hat Festival brings hundreds of hat-wearers onto the streets! The art deco Electric Palace and the Arts Centre complete the cultural mix with music, film, theatre and comedy events and exhibitions.

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Lyme Regis – the Pearl of Dorset

Lyme RegisLyme Regis is a delightfully timeless seaside resort, with something for everyone. The narrow streets are lined with pretty colour-washed houses, and the high street has lots of independent shops and art/craft galleries to browse.

Foodies will enjoy the variety of eating places on offer – from sea-fresh fish and chips, via imaginative café and pub food, to fine dining restaurants. Beach huts, ammonites aplenty and sandy beaches make Lyme perfect for traditional family bucket-and-spade holidays, and walkers will be invigorated by the spectacular Jurassic Coast and countryside walks starting from the town.

The Town Mill and the Marine Theatre in the heart of Lyme have a regular programme of cultural events, and other things to do in Lyme also include annual events, like Lifeboat Week with the Red Arrows, a Carnival, Jazz and Folk weekends, Guitars on the Beach and the Fossil Festival.

Dorchester – historic county town

Known as Casterbridge in Thomas Hardy’s novels, Dorchester is the county town, set in the archaeologically-rich hills of west Dorset, and has many interesting features dating back to prehistory, as well as all the shopping and recreational facilities you’d expect of a large market town.

dorchester-dorsetVisitor attractions are many, and include Maiden Castle hill fort, Kingston Maurward Animal Park and Gardens, Dinosaur, Military, Teddy and County Museums, a Roman Town House, and a recreation of King Tutankhamun’s tomb and treasures. The National Trust manages both Hardy’s house in Dorchester itself, and his thatched birthplace cottage at Rockhampton.

On the way back to Warren House, why not take the spectacular coast road, via Admiral Hardy’s monument, and Abbotsbury with its Chesil Beach, Swannery and Sub-Tropical Gardens? Or you could follow the causeway to the Isle of Portland to visit the lighthouse, sculpture park and stone quarries.

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Warren House Bed and Breakfast in Chideock
Tel: 01297 489996