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What's On in Dorset

Although as a picturesque coastal county, Dorset is mainly famed for its natural harbour in Poole, the golden sandy beaches of Bournemouth and Sandbanks and the rugged and prehistoric Jurassic Coast. And there is so much more to discover, whether you are living here, visiting, working or studying in and around the area, we're here to help you discover all of Dorset's many jewels.

We have to start with Bournemouth and Poole's beaches where there is something for everyone - at any time of the year. Sandbanks peninsula is understandably the first port of call for many tourists; with it's stunning bays, expensive properties, fine restaurants and cafes; all perfect for watching the world go by. But don't miss Canford Cliff's or Brancsome beaches with their long stretches of sand, clear waters and stunning views. Hamworthy Park and Beach is often over-looked and is worth a visit and also a great spot for kite-surfing. 

Further along to Bournemouth you'll find all the entertainment you need at Bournemouth Pier and an abundance of bars, cafes, restaurants and activities for all ages.

A little further afield, don't miss Studland Bay or a trip over to Swanage Beach.

Dorset is also host to many parks and green spaces; Poole Park is great for walking and has a lovely lake and fantastic park for the kids and is a firm favourite with runners. It's proximitely to Poole Quay is very handy too. 

Moors Valley near Ringwood is a great for an action packed day out with a dozen different parks, Gruaffulo and Zog trails, miniature steam railway and fantastic walking routes through the woods.

Upton Country Parkin Poole is a fantastic Grade 11 listed property with award winning gardens and woodlands. 

If you fancy some hiking, the South West Coastal Path is a must. Take the Studland Ferry to the starting point of a journey of some breathtaking coastal scenery.

As well as the beaches, the county boasts many shopping districts.

If you're looking to spend some time shopping in Poole, there are many different areas and centres including; the Dolphin Shopping Centre in the town centre, Poole Retail Park, Wessex Gate Retail Park, Poole High Street, Old Town and The Quay.

Bournemouth High Street is home to Zara, Primark and some of the bigger high street names and Castepoint Shopping Centre in Bournemouth is a really popular shopping complex with M&S, H&M, Next and a flagship Boots store.

And if you fancy a bit of a pamper while you're here don't miss our guide to the best Spa's in Dorset; we have some of the finest in the country and some even with sea views so you can really re-charge while admiring the stunning Dorset coastline.

Or perhaps you're in need of something a bit more lively? If you're visiting Dorset from April, you're likely to be here during a festival or two. There's a festival or big event taking place most weekends throughout Spring and Summer. Make sure you plan ahead by visiting our Guide to the best Events and Festivals in Dorset (one of our favourite's is Poole Harbour Fest which takes place in July).

Enjoy all that Dorset has to offer right here with everything you need for visiting or living in the area. With a comprehensive what's on guide and calendar showcasing many events in Dorset, eating and drinking guides including where to go for the best sunday lunch in Poole or the best of Poole's outdoor drinking spots. Family and Parenting ideas and inspiration with Things to Do with the Kids in Dorset, Family Days Out, Dorset's Top Tourist Attractions to keeping fit with our Health and Fitness Guides, Finding a a job in Dorset, Sport, Pets, Business - you name it, we have a Total Guide to it!

Our aim is to bring communities together, help businesses succeed, people thrive and places come alive and we hope we help you uncover the best that Dorset UK has to offer.