Although many people dream of sun, sea, and the inevitable sangria, taking a holiday doesn’t have to be about going abroad; the UK can offer holidaymakers a lot too, especially when it comes to our diverse and scenic coastline. One county that can offer up some of the best seaside towns and villages along the south coast, is Dorset.

Nestled in between Devon and Hampshire, Dorset has a mix of large and small seaside towns, along with rural villages, all with their points of interest for visitors.

Standing tall amongst its neighbours, Bournemouth is one of the largest coastal towns in the South, and has the facilities to match! Its seven miles of award winning beaches offer up not just sunbathing and swimming, but several surfing spots as well, along with play facilities for the children, and gardens to while away the afternoons in. It’s here that you’ll find the most cultural facilities as well, with an arena and theatre playing host to many well-known stars, and several museums in the area showcasing everything from classic cars to fine art.

Then there’s Weymouth, shortly to be immortalised in Olympic history, as host to the 2012 sailing events. This town boasts a busy harbour, 3 miles of popular beaches, and facilities for many outdoor activities, such as paragliding and rock climbing. Weymouth is also within reach of the famous Chesil Beach and Portland Bill lighthouse. The lighthouse can be found on the Isle of Portland, which has an interesting military history, and a number of quarries, used to provide stone for some key UK landmarks. It’s also a good place for walkers to visit, and has a number of coastal paths packed with wildlife spotting opportunities.

Other key towns worth checking out include Dorchester and Poole. Located further inland, Dorchester is the county town, and is a good place to visit if you’re interested in local archaeology. There are a number of historical sites close to the town as well, along with family friendly attractions dedicated to dinosaurs and teddy bears.

Browse through the pages on this site, and you’ll also come across information on the historic market towns of Wareham and Blandford. Both towns have architecture which dates back to Georgian and/or Victorian times, which add to their traditional charm. There are also interesting tales about the ‘Blandford Fly’, Lawrence of Arabia, and the unique Blue Pool connected with these towns.

Dorset has its fair share of smaller towns and villages, many of which lie along the historic ‘Jurassic Coastline’, a designated World Heritage Site. Read on to discover why Wool on the Isle of Purbeck has a claim to fame, and what made Lyme Regis a popular filming location, and inspiration for notable British writers.

For something a little different, there are the sheltered beaches, diving spots, and nature reserve in the small town of Swanage, to the South East of the county, and the fishing town of West Bay. West Bay offers facilities for a number of sports, several beaches, and is a good base from which to explore the neighbouring county of Devon.

Mix all these towns, villages, seaside activities, and other attractions, with a host of good quality high street and independent shops, dining facilities, nightlife, and accommodation to suit every taste and budget, and that in a nutshell, is Dorset. Take a look around the site to find out more, you might just be surprised at all it has to offer.