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We meet you at Weymouth train station and take you (5 mins) to your contemporary B&B right on the town's splendid Georgian Esplanade. Your accommodation overlooks the beach made famous by Mad King George III in 1789 when he took his first Royal dip using a newfangled beach machine and turned sea bathing into a national pastime! Stroll the amazing sands, visit the bustling C17 harbour or take a taxi (5 mins) to the C16 Sandsfoot Castle - one of Henry VIII's Device Forts. *Comfortable Hotel*
Take a short (11 mins) bus transfer to join one of the most scenic sections of the magnificent 630-mile long South West Coast Path. With the dramatic white chalk cliffs as your backdrop, you follow the classic smugglers' route down to picturesque Osmington where the aptly named C13 Smugglers' Inn does great coffee! A short climb to the top of Burning Cliff is rewarded with the most fabulous views of the fossil-filled Jurassic Coast before continuing on to Durdle Door - one of the most photographed rock arches in the world. Today's final stretch hugs the coast down into gorgeous Lulworth Cove - a great place for lunch, a swim or a journey back through 185 million years of history at the renowned Heritage Centre. A pre-arranged taxi will collect you for the 20-minute journey to Corfe, described as one of the most beautiful villages in England, where you stay overnight. *Comfortable Hotel*
Built by William the Conqueror and destroyed by Cromwell's vengeful troops during the Civil War, the dramatic ruins of Corfe Castle - now a National Trust property and the setting for several historical feature films - stand at the gateway to the Isle of Purbeck and its surrounding hills. We've deliberately kept today's walk short to enable you to explore at leisure before setting out on the panoramic ridge high above the village. It's a journey of diverse natural beauty - with Poole Harbour and Bournemouth to your left, the rolling Purbeck Hills to your right and the Isle of Wight clearly visible in the distance - as you follow the pretty Purbeck Way into Swanage, a small Victorian seaside town with a stunning semi-circular bay. You spend two nights at lovely Purbeck House, close to the town centre and just a few minutes' walk from the beach. *Comfortable Hotel*
We strongly recommend a circular walk today to Durlston Country Park, a magnificent 280-acre nature reserve of sea-cliffs, downs, meadows, hedgerows and woods. With 250+ bird species, 500+ moths and 33 species of breeding butterfly, few places in the country have the same ornithological appeal as Durlston and, from March to July, hidden deep in the cliffs are sea birds, swifts and swallows. The recently restored Victorian castle boasts a fully interactive Visitor Centre, restaurant and panoramic roof terrace. *Comfortable Hotel*
Today's magnificent coastal path hugs Swanage Bay as you climb gently out of the town and up to the famous white chalk sea stacks, Old Harry Rocks. As you continue towards the tiny Purbeck village of Studland, you'll pass 'Dragon's Teeth' tank traps and Fort Henry - a concrete observation bunker built in 1943 and used by Churchill, Eisenhower and King George VI to watch the rehearsals for D-Day. From the gorgeous white sands of Studland, it's just a short hop (5 mins) on the chain ferry across to the luxury four-star Haven Hotel & Spa on exclusive Sandbanks peninsula. There's an optional bus ride for those wanting to visit neighbouring Poole - a beautiful coastal town whose natural harbour is the second largest in the world. *Premium Hotel*
After breakfast, your hotelier will arrange a taxi to Poole station at a time to connect with your onward travel arrangements. This costs around £15 and takes 15-30 minutes dependent on the traffic.
* 5 nights in 3 to 4-star accommodation * 3 days point to point walking (1 optional walk on day 4) * UNESCO-listed Jurassic Coast - England's first Natural World Heritage Site * Traditional seaside towns, spectacular bays and beaches, delightful English villages, world-renowned tea-rooms!
Full English breakfasts are included; with so many dining options on your doorstep, we've left other meals up to you. Dorset has a long history of farming and fishing and the choice and freshness of the local seafood is spectacular. Other local produce comes from the lush pastures and fertile agricultural land and there are more and more local farm shops and farmers markets offering foodie delights from fruit and vegetables straight from the garden to freshly baked pies, bread, organic meats and plenty of other treats such as Dorset Knob biscuits, Portland Dough Cakes and tongue-tingling Dorset Naga chillies! Dorset is also home to some of the UK best independent breweries and a handful of vineyards that produce some excellent beer, cider and wines (still and sparkling).
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