Dorset
Culture & History

Enter your dates to find available activities

Our most recommended Dorset Culture & History

From Poole: 2-Hour Jurassic Coastal Cruise

1. From Poole: 2-Hour Jurassic Coastal Cruise

Begin your trip at Poole Harbour and board an open deck boat fitted with seating and comfortable saloons. From here, you will be taken on a journey through 185 million years of history along the Jurassic Coastline. On your cruise pass a number of Dorset's most famous landmarks like the golden beaches of Sandbanks, Brownsea Island, and the Old Harry Rocks, named after a notorious pirate. Enjoy expert commentary from your captains as you glide by. Once reaching Swanage, head back towards Poole and capture the perfect picture of the famous chalk formations from the boat's outer deck.

Poole Harbor and Islands Cruise

2. Poole Harbor and Islands Cruise

Take a cruise around Europe's largest natural harbor, home to the town of Poole, the golden beaches of Sandbanks and Brownsea Island. From either open deck seating or comfortable saloon you will see stunning views of the exceptional landscape that surrounds it. Your 70 minute trip will start on charming Poole Quay with its old buildings and buzzing atmosphere.  Next you will go past Brownsea Island, home to wildlife and picturesque Brownsea Castle, built to protect against French invasions. After that comes the Sandbanks Peninsula and the luxurious houses of the ‘Golden Mile’. Then you will tour the great natural expanse of the harbor and the remaining islands: Green, Furzey, Long and Round. Fronting onto beautiful scenery it helped inspire classics like Lord of the Rings and Gulliver's Travel. 

From Bournemouth: Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door Trip

3. From Bournemouth: Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door Trip

Discover some of the most scenic coastline in southern England on a bus trip from Bournemouth. Travel along the famous Jurassic Coast, via Poole Harbour and Sandbanks, to experience the nation's only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit both Lulworth Cove and the natural limestone arch of Durdle Door and get plenty of information and maps to help you along the way. Use the time to go for a light nature walk from Durdle Door over the hill to Lulworth Cove and get magnificent views from Hambury Tout. Spend the time at Lulworth Cove if you prefer to give your legs a rest and get a beautiful view of the arch on an optional boat ride from the beach, at your own expense. Benefit from a map highlighting the main features, or feel free to follow your own nose and explore independently. Find a nice cafe or restaurant in the village of West Lulworth or avail of the small shop in the holiday park at Durdle Door.

From Bournemouth: Jurassic Coast & Isle of Purbeck Day Tour

4. From Bournemouth: Jurassic Coast & Isle of Purbeck Day Tour

Catch the early morning ferry across to the Isle of Purbeck. View Old Harry Rocks, the starting point of the Jurassic Coast, England’s only natural UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take in breath-taking views across Poole Harbour and towards Brownsea Island. By mid morning you will arrive at Durlston Country Park. Visit the brand new Jurassic Coast visitor center housed in the recently refurbished Durlston Castle. There’s time for a morning coffee stop overlooking the famous Great Globe and a chance to take the cliff top walk along to Tilly Whim Caves and the Anvil Point Lighthouse. For every visitor brought to Durlston Country Park, a contribution towards a bursary that helps to support their volunteer programme is made. Heading west drive through some of the tiny lanes and villages that give Purbeck its unique character. Take lunch in the village of Corfe Castle, dominated by the ruins that give it its name. Entrance to the castle itself not included (Free to NT members). After lunch take a gentle drive along the coast taking in more stunning scenery as you head for an afternoon at Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door. Walk down to Man o’ War Rocks and view the magnificent rock arch of Durdle Door, hewn from the Portland limestone beds. Finally, head down to Lulworth Cove and see the famous Lulworth Crumple rock formation in Stair Hole.

England: 3-Day Stonehenge, Bath & South West Coast Tour

5. England: 3-Day Stonehenge, Bath & South West Coast Tour

Discover some of the most historic sites in England on a 3-day tour of the southwest, visiting the Roman city of Bath, and center of the Kingdom of Wessex at Exeter. Drive along the preshistoric Jurassic Coast of Dorset, and head into the vast moorland of Dartmoor, a protected national park with exposed granite hilltops. The tour, by comfortable 16-seat minibus, also includes time at Stonehenge, the most famous stone circle in England, and a chance to climb Glastonbury Tor. Day 1: Depart London for the old Kingdom of Wessex en route to the famous Neolithic standing stone circle of Stonehenge on Salisbury Plain. Explore the mystical stones, which continue to confound historians to this day. Next, head for the dramatic south coast of Dorset, enjoying the panoramic views over white sand beaches, and the natural rock arch of Durdle Door. Spend the afternoon on the Jurassic Coast before driving to the historic city of Exeter, which was the most southwesterly fortified settlement of the ancient Roman Empire. You will be based here for the next 2 nights. Day 2: Enjoy a morning exploring the wilderness of Dartmoor, including the ancient "Clapper Bridge" at Postbridge. Go to the market town of Tavistock, where Francis Drake used to live. Return to Exeter in the early afternoon to explore the Roman town’s underground passages and ancient walls. Visit the renovated Royal Albert Memorial Museum to find fascinating sections on zoology, archaeology, anthropology, and fine art. Marvel at the 12th-century Norman Cathedral, which boasts the longest uninterrupted vaulted ceiling in England. Day 3: On your final day, head to Glastonbury and visit Glastonbury Tor. Learn about its connection to Avalon and King Arthur, and climb the Tor for spectacular views across 3 English counties. Drive to the beautiful City of Bath for lunch, with time in the afternoon to explore the relics of its Roman past, including the famous Roman Baths. Admire the handsome Georgian architecture of the city center, and pop into the 7th-century Bath Abbey, noted for its fan vaulting and commemorative stained glass. Return to London for an early evening drop off.

From Bournemouth: Cardiff City Sightseeing Full-Day Trip

6. From Bournemouth: Cardiff City Sightseeing Full-Day Trip

Meet your guide at Bournemouth Coach Station then jump onboard your air-conditioned coach for the day and sit back and relax as you travel across the rolling countryside towards Wales. Arrive in Cardiff at around 11am and enjoy a guided walking tour of the city center, admiring iconic landmarks and learning about the city’s history along the way. Visit the famous and history-rich Cardiff Castle, as well as other sites such as the National Museum of Wales, City Hall, Principality Stadium, and more. After your walking tour, enjoy some free time to discover the city on your own, find a local eatery for lunch, or shop for souvenirs. You can also head inside the city’s attractions during this time, for an additional fee payable on entry. In the late afternoon, head to the vibrant Cardiff Bay on the south coast, boasting beautiful views of the city skyline. Here you can also see the Millennium Center, Pierhead, and the National Assembly of Wales.

From Bournemouth: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour to Bath

7. From Bournemouth: Full-Day Sightseeing Tour to Bath

Board the bus from Bournemouth Travel Interchange then sit back and relax as you soak up countryside views on the journey to Bath. Arrive in Bath and embark on an insightful guided tour of this charming Georgian city, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Listed location. Travel through the city’s picturesque streets and feel yourself be transported back in time as you listen to your guide share stories about Bath’s rich-history. Highlights of the tour include Bath Abbey and a parish church founded in the 7th century. The tour also passes by the Jane Austen Center, which houses a permanent exhibition of her life and her work, as well as the Royal Crescent, which boasts a curved line of 30 terraced housing showcasing the very best of the city's Georgian architecture. At the end of the guided tour, receive a map of the city and then spend some free time exploring on your own. During this time you can revisit the sights that interest you most, shop for souvenirs of your trip, or find a place for lunch. At the end of an unforgettable full-day experience, enjoy a well-deserved rest on the return journey to Bournemouth.

From Bournemouth: Full Day Trip to London with City Tour

8. From Bournemouth: Full Day Trip to London with City Tour

Leave the beach behind and head for the hustle and bustle of the British capital on a full-day trip from Bournemouth to London. Immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of the capital as you visit the city’s historic monuments, lavish palaces, and luscious parks. Upon arrival in London, enjoy a 90-minute guided walking tour of the city and learn about the capital’s rich-history along the way. As you wander around the city see some of its most famous landmarks and attractions including Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, the River Thames, Whitehall, Horse Guards Parade, Downing Street, and more. At the end of the guided tour, enjoy a few hours of free time to explore at your own leisure. Spend some time perusing the shops and window displays on Oxford Street, grab a bite to eat at a local fish and chip shop, visit the iconic Tower Bridge and Tower of London, or enjoy a hop-on hop-off bus or boat ride.

Frequently asked questions about Dorset Culture & History

What are other things to do than Culture & History that are worth visiting in Dorset?

The other unmissable things to do in Dorset are:

Other Sightseeing Options in Dorset

Want to discover all there is to do in Dorset? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Dorset

It was a lovely cruise in nice weather and interesting sites and the beautiful rocks of old Harry on the way , the boat was clean and spacious and the commentary was funny & informative

Very enjoyable with stunning scenery around the islands in Poole Harbour and informative commentary. Recommend going.

Best £12 we have ever spent. What a lovely trip that we will do on a regular basis.

Cruise was good with good knowledge of the history narrated by the drive

It was an excellent and informative trip, even for us as local people