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Our family trip to Dorset

August 13, 2017

We love Dorset. It has a special place in my heart as we used to go there on family holidays when we were little. Now my parents live there, it’s the perfect long weekend escape for us with great memories.

We recently spent a long weekend in Dorset and were VERY lucky with the weather (apparently it’s the summer)?! As we had such fine weather we made sure we did some exploring in the seaside towns close to my parent’s house near Bridport.

If you’re heading to Dorset on holiday soon or just want a nosey at some stunning places on the South Coast read on for what we did and saw…

West Bay

You may recognise those cliffs from somewhere… They were the famous ones seen on the drama series Broadchurch on ITV. Broadchurch definitely put West Bay on the map for lots of people, but for us it has been a firm favourite for years. We love West Bay for the harbour walks, great fish and chip shops, beautiful beach and coastal walks.

The coastal walks have changed recently though due to coastal erosion, a lot of the paths divert in land to avoid the falls. If you look closely in the picture below, just behind Amelie you can see the latest cliff fall. Even so, the walks here on a bright, clear day are fantastic and something we love doing. If you’re into golf there are some fantastic courses that border the sea so have a look.

Now we have little ones though our coastal walks have become less and we have spent more time playing on the beach.

west bay dorset

west bay dorset

west bay dorset

Cafe life

You may have noticed a trend if you follow me on Instagram and that’s that I like coffee, a lot. I don’t think I’m alone with fellow parents, the caffeine definitely helps with those early mornings!

Wherever I go I make sure I find somewhere that does good coffee and food. We love the Watch House Cafe in West Bay and their sister restaurant in Burton Bradstock, Hive Beach Cafe is a favourite as well.

If you want good brunches, pizza, seafood and coffee/cake these are great places to go. Both also have amazing views!

watch house cafe west bay

watch house cafe west bay

In and around West Bay 

There’s more to West Bay than a stunning beach. We love walks around the harbour, exploring the local gift and antique shops. You can find some really lovely shops just behind the beaches so it’s worth a look.

west bay dorset

Walk just outside of West Bay to the long stay car park and you’ll find the most wonderful park.

Suitable from ages 0-99 years (as the sign tells me), there is something for everyone. My husband particularly enjoying climbing one of the frames and Amelie loved the trampolines and slides. This is a great activity if you need to burn off some toddler energy before you head back into a car.

west bay dorset

west bay dorset

west bay dorset

We love West Bay for its versatility and if you need bigger shops you’re very close to Bridport town centre (a 5 minute drive) so it’s a great family holiday or day trip destination.

Lyme Regis

Another one of my favourite places which is about a 20 minute drive down the coast from Bridport.

Most Dorset beaches are pebble beaches, but at Lyme you can find a lovely stretch of sandy beach, perfect if you have a baby who eats everything! Sand for me is definitely preferable to stones!!

The beach front is also stunning and very family friendly. Pastel beach huts, trampolines, places to hire parasols, great cafes, food stalls and bars -something for everyone.

Lyme Regis also has a very pretty and picturesque town with lots of shops, its probably a 10 miniute walk from the beach we based ourselves at so you really could fill a day here.

lyme regis dorset

lyme regis dorset

lyme regis dorset

lyme regis dorset

There is a wonderful walk into Lyme Regis through the gardens. We parked in the  car park and then walked down, it’s beautiful and I’d really recommend it for the views – even if the walk back up is steep!

lyme regis dorset

Lyme is the perfect family friendly beach destination and I’ve got my eye on an evening out with the husband at one of the restaurants next time we’re there/

Exploring local villages

Away from the seaside, there are some beautiful villages to explore in Dorset. I love the light coloured stone used on the buildings in lots of the villages around Dorset, it reminds me of the Cotswolds and it is so pretty.

We love to get Evie in the backpack (or in the buggy depending on sleeps) and explore.

We like to walk on the old railway lines in and around Bridport, explore Bridport centre which has lots of shops and pubs,



And just like that our long weekend was over. It always goes so quickly when there are so many lovely places to visit.

For more from our trip check out our Weekend Vlog…

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Have you been to Dorset? What are your favourite things to do/places to visit?

Sarah x

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  • Reply Kelly Peters August 14, 2017 at 11:05 am

    What a lovely post! My family and I have recently moved from London to Sussex and we’re starting to explore the south coast of England. Originally I’m from the north so this part of the world is relatively unknown to me! I’ll definitely be heading to West Bay (LOVE Broadchurch too!)

  • Reply Joanna August 14, 2017 at 11:43 am

    I live in Dorset but on the other side, next to Bournemouth. I have actually never made it all the way to Lyme Regis because the public transport beyond Weymouth is terrible. It looks like a great place though to spend a beautiful day at the beach.

  • Reply Eva Katona August 14, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    Looks like a really lovely place with a lot to do with small children, that’s always good to know. Lucky to have the grandparents living there.

  • Reply Rachelanne_bee August 14, 2017 at 8:20 pm

    Love Dorset, we recently went to Weymouth and Durdle Door which was so pretty! Shame about the rain though!

  • Reply Little B & Me August 15, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    This place looks amazing, Your shots just make this post!
    That park looks amazing, B would love it. x

    • Reply Sarah August 15, 2017 at 8:22 pm

      Thanks so much. The park is so, so good. I think my husband and Dad had as much fun as Amelie 😂😂 x

    • Reply Sarah August 17, 2017 at 8:01 pm

      Thanks so much! Xx

  • Reply Jenni Grainger August 16, 2017 at 8:12 pm

    Love this post some fantastis pictures. I would like for us to visit Dorset one day looks like you did plenty of adventuring

    • Reply Sarah August 17, 2017 at 8:00 pm

      It was really lovely. You should definitely go it’s beautiful! X

  • Reply five little doves August 16, 2017 at 9:00 pm

    Oh I LOVE this! We have just returned from Lyme Regis and your photos made me feel all warm and fuzzy! We spent a lot of time there and at West Bay, what a beautiful place it is, and just like I imagined from Broadchurch!! I absolutely love it down there, I would move in a flash!

    • Reply Sarah August 17, 2017 at 7:58 pm

      Oh it’s wonderful isn’t it! I would love to move down there as well. X

  • Reply DASH | MODE LILY ☀️ August 17, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    Aww your pictures look amazing, I’ve actually never been but it looks like a lovely place so I’ll add it to my travel list 🙂

  • Reply Christy August 19, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    I have a cousin in Dorset. Perhaps it’s time we took the baby down for a visit! Lovely pics.

    • Reply Sarah August 19, 2017 at 8:48 pm

      Thank you. It’s lovely with a little one – nice to stroll along the beach! X

  • Reply Tanita August 19, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    Aw Dorset looks beautiful Sarah! We have never been so I definitely think we need to make the trip. I love the little beach huts they are such lovely colours. It sounds like you had the most amazing time. It is always nice going to visit family too. xx

    • Reply Sarah August 19, 2017 at 8:49 pm

      They are so cute aren’t they! It’s lovely going down there we are very lucky x

  • Reply Natasha Kendall August 20, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    Those beach huts look like a great OOTD spot! 😀

    I hope you had a great time, looks lovely. x

  • Reply Katie Halsall August 21, 2017 at 8:06 pm

    The Broadchurch beach! I’ve only ever been to Dorset once but I remember it being such a lovely area. Nothing better than walking along the coast. Looks like you had a fab time there!

  • Reply Verily Victoria Vocalises August 21, 2017 at 10:50 pm

    We live in Somerset but are on the Dorset border and Lyme Regis and West Bay are two regular haunts for us. It sounds like you had a lovely time x

  • Reply Menorca August 22, 2017 at 11:00 pm

    I have not been there yt but have heard god things about it and would so love to go there, exploring UK myself .) Hopedully sometime soon!

  • Reply Kirstylou October 9, 2017 at 8:48 pm

    I live in weymouth and never get bored of the place! Glad you enjoyed!!

  • Reply Deb Sharratt October 28, 2017 at 9:40 am

    I love Dorset and the whole Jurassic coastline. West Bay is a must for any Broadchurch fans and Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove are beautiful places to go.

  • Reply elle October 30, 2017 at 11:52 am

    westbay is one of my fave places!!! xelle x

    • Reply Sarah October 30, 2017 at 1:10 pm

      Me too, it’s just beautiful isnt it x

  • Reply Sarah Humphreys November 4, 2017 at 1:28 pm

    We went on holiday to Dorset this summer and stayed in Charmouth, we visited West bay and Lyme Regis, it is such a beautiful area and there are some really great children’s play areas around which my three loved. We will go back to the area in the not too distant future.

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