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SOUTH WEST DORSET & THE JURASSIC COAST

from £668
Dorset is one of the finest counties in England for walking with its dramatic coastline, ancient wooded valleys and secluded river valleys. There will be a mix of walks both inland and coastal, including walking along the superb Dorset Coast Path. 

Guided Walking Holidays - South West Dorset & the Jurassic Coast

The 95 mile Jurassic coast  illustrates three geological time periods of Earth history, Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous, which collectively make up the Mesozoic Era, running from around 250 to 65 million years ago. Rocks that offer an almost complete record of that entire time are spread out along the Jurassic Coast.

Inland, Dorset’s stunning countryside, little changed since the days of local author Thomas Hardy, offers bluebell woodlands in spring, vibrant colours of sun-warmed heaths in summer, and autumnal splendour.

The swannery at Abbotsbury is the only place in the world where you are able to walk through the heart of a colony of nesting Mute Swans. Spread over a site of some 25 acres, it was established by Benedictine Monks who built a monastery at Abbotsbury during the 1040s, and farmed the swans to produce food for their banquets.

During your time in Dorset, you will have the opportunity to experience a mixture of interesting sea and inland walking routes which offer panoramic views of Dorset's dramatic coastline, ancient wooded valleys and secluded river valleys. 

Holiday Highlights

  • Dorset is one of the finest counties in England for walking with its dramatic coastline, ancient wooded valleys and secluded river valleys. 
  • Experience a mixture of interesting sea and inland walking routes offering panoramic views and access to small towns. 
  • Walks along the superb Dorset Coast Path which forms part of the South West Coast Path – the longest national trail in the UK. 
  • Four walking days with two days on the coast and two days inland. 
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Half board en suite accommodation
      All transport necessary to and from the walks.
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised programme, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 5

  1. Day 1

    Independent arrival at the Eypes Mouth Country Hotel in Eype, near Bridport. Check in at the hotel is from 2pm, so please arrive at your leisure in the afternoon. Your leader will meet you and your travel companions at approximately 6.30pm in the hotel bar for an introduction before dinner. All evening meals are taken in the hotel restaurant. 

  2. Day 2

    Eype Circular. Our first full day takes us from the hotel to the coast, and westward along the South West Coast Path, ascending Thorncombe Beacon and Golden Cap (the highest point on the south coast of England). We then head inland to Chideock and view the Martyrs Church and Museum. Our return route is via Symondsbury. About 8.5 miles, 595m of ascent. 

  3. Day 3

    Morcomelake to Lyme Regis. We take hired transport to Morcombelake and from there walk up to Stonebarrow Hill, continuing to the village of Charmouth. We then head north and north-west along the Monarch's Way, passing the secluded Champernhayes Mill. At Stubbs Farm we turn south, making for Hole Common. Our walk finishes with a descent into Lyme Regis, with time to look around at leisure before meeting our transport for the return back to the hotel. About 9 miles, 381m of ascent. 

  4. Day 4

    Stoke Abbott Circular. Today's walk is inland taking us to the high points in Dorset. Hired transport will drop us in Stoke Abbot near Beaminster. We skirt the north side of Lewesdon Hill before joining the Wessex Ridgeway to take us to the top of Pilsdon Pen (an ascent of 277m). This is Dorset's second highest point and has panoramic views extending for many miles. It was bequeathed to the National Trust in 1982. We descend to use the Jubilee Trail to bring us to our pick up point for the journey back to the hotel. About 7 miles, 488m of ascent. 

  5. Day 5

    Abbotsbury to Eype. The last day of the holiday is the longest, using both the Hardy Way, named after Thomas Hardy, the poet and novelist, and the South West Coast Path. Again, hired transport is used, which takes us to Abbotsbury. From there we have time to ascend the hill to St Catherine's Chapel and return. We then head north and west from the village to descend to the coast at West Bexington. The onward route to Burton Hive beach is at sea level. After Burton Freshwater, a climb above the East Cliff adjacent to the golf course brings us to West Bay, from where we take an inland route back to the hotel. About 12 miles, 488m of ascent.

  6. Day 6

    Independent departure from the Eypes Mouth Country Hotel after breakfast. Check out is by 10am. We hope you have enjoyed your holiday and look forward to welcoming you on another soon. 

Travel Details

West Dorset is approached from the north by the M5 via Bristol and the M3, M27 from London via Southampton. The holiday routes are clearly marked and the park is accessible from the A35 Exeter/Dorchester road.

Follow A35 bypass, the turning to Eype is signposted. Take 3rd right turn, sign to Lower Eype and to the beach, follow narrow lane until you reach the hotel. 

The nearest train stations are Dorchester, Crewkerne or Axminster.


Trip Map

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Our Accommodation on this holiday

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday. If you are on a multi-centre holiday, these are highlights of the places where we stay. Please refer to your Holiday Information sheet (which can be found under View Departures & Book), for your departure date and for all your accommodation details.

Eype's Mouth Country Hotel

We stay at the family run three-star Eype's Mouth Country Hotel beautifully situated a stone's throw from the sea with excellent views. The hotel is perfectly located for access to the South West Coast Path and is located in the small Dorset village of Eype, near Bridport.

The hotel has 17 bedrooms, all of varying size and design but all equally comfortable. The bedrooms each have en-suite facilities with either a bath or shower, tea & coffee making facilities, TV and hairdryer. 

Breakfasts and all evening meals are taken in the hotel restaurant, with views overlooking the coast path and Lyme Bay. Picnic lunches are not included on this holiday, however lunches can be purchased from the hotel or on the days where hired transport is used, a stop can be made at a local supermarket.

The hotel has a bar and lounge for you to relax before or after dinner. Free internet is available throughout the hotel.