Buckets, spades and wetsuits at the ready. Studland Bay inspired Enid Blyton’s Noddy and it will inspire your kids to help themselves to a glorious slice of coastline. The beach stretches for miles, the waters gently shelve and the trails wend their way through the dunes and woodlands.
Dig for fossils at Lulworth Cove, build castles from the fine sand at Studland Bay. Sail, kayak, kitesurf or paddleboard to the backdrop of Old Harry Rocks and the Isle of Wight. Rummage around the rocks and fossils of Kimmeridge Bay. Swim at Knoll Beach, then dry off and take the ferry to glitzy Sandbanks or Poole harbour.
Your little chimps can meet their mates at Monkey World, with its 65 acres of sanctuary for over 230 primates, picnic among the Panzers at the Tank Museum, or see a world in miniature at Corfe Castle Model Village, and history brought to life at Corfe Castle itself.
Hop over to Brownsea Island for woodland, wetlands and wildlife. To Sandbanks Beach for Blue-Flag swimming and to Farmer Palmer’s for hands-on animal adventures.
Take a stroll round the village and through the idyllic Dorset countryside. Shoot clay from the sky at Purbeck Shooting School. See the deserted village at Tyneham, then walk to the cove. Have a picnic among the Panzers at the Tank Museum. See the home of Lawrence of Arabia at Clouds Hill. Take the Saxon Wall Walk for great views of the town and river.
Book the paddle steamer from Wareham Quay or canoe or kayak around Studland Bay or Durdle Door. Potter round Poole Harbour and enjoy a pint in a harbourside pub. Then it’s off to Poole Pottery to see the latest craze in glaze and maybe have a go yourself.
Trot your way through acres of tranquility at Upton Country Park and Compton Acres, pausing only for afternoon tea. Take a bracing winter walk or summer stroll along Branksome Chine or ride the slides at Splashdown Waterpark.
Elsewhere there’s waterskiing and jetskiing, coasteering, boat rental or Castaway Charters if you’re throwing a party on the water. Learn to sail at Studland or go retro on a pedallo. On land or sea, every day’s a winner in Dorset.