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COVID-19 IMPORTANT NOTICE: The good news is that many of our attractions are opening up again. Owing to the Coronavirus outbreak and social distancing rules, some of them will have changed their opening times and may have altered some elements of the entertainment and events they offer, as well as requiring advance booking. Please check with each individual attraction before visiting.

Find the Best of Dorset attractions

Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens - a Best of Dorset Attraction

Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens

01305 871387

One of Britain’s best-known & best-loved gardens. A botanical treasure-trove, with charming walled garden walks and spectacular woodland valley views.

Open daily 10am – 5pm (last admissions between 3-4pm)

Abbotsbury Swannery - tourist attraction in Dorset

Abbotsbury Swannery

01305 871858

Home to the only managed colony of nesting mute swans in the world. Cygnet hatching mid-May to end of June.  Mass feeding currently suspended owing to COVID-19.

Open daily until 1st November 2021, 10am – 5pm (last admissions between 3-4pm)

Adventure Wonderland - Dorset attraction

Adventure Wonderland

01202 483444

Dorset’s award-winning family theme park is perfect for an unforgettable day out.

Open: please see the Adventure Wonderland Website for full park opening dates which currently vary.

Athelhampton House & Gardens - Dorset attractions

Athelhampton House & Gardens

01305 848363

Visit one of the finest manor houses in England, dating from the 15th Century. Coach House restaurant serving morning coffee, lunches and cream teas.

Open Sundays to Fridays, 10am – 4pm. House and restaurant will re-open on 17th May 2021.

Please check the website for up-to-date opening times.

Bennetts Water Gardens - Dorset attraction

Bennetts Water Gardens

01305 785150

Renowned for its replica Monet Bridge and National Plant Collection of Water Lilies flowering through the summer with 8 acres of lakeside walks and garden trails for children.

Open 10am to 4pm daily, closed Saturdays.

City Cruises Poole - Dorset attraction

City Cruises Poole

020 77 400 400

We have a different view of Dorset. Sailing from Poole Quay and Swanage Pier. We offer a range of trips including Harbour Cruises, Swanage and Poole day trips, Sea Train Adventure, Birdwatching & Fireworks Cruises plus much more.

Currently closed

Dinosaur Museum - Dorset attraction

Dinosaur Museum

01305 269880

The Dinosaur Museum is all about having a roaring good time! It’s not a theme park, there’s not an animatronic in sight!

Open from 19th May to 31st October, daily from 10am to 4pm.

Dorset County Museum

01305 262735

Tomorrow’s Museum for Dorset.

Re-opening later in 2021.

Dorset Heavy Horse Farm Park - Dorset attraction

Dorset Heavy Horse Farm Park

01202 824040

As featured on BBC TV, this Award Winning Park entertains every age with a separate timetable for Adults & Children. Heavy Horse Carriage / Tractor / Pony ride and ‘Drive’ a real tractor!!

10am-4pm from 1st May 2021.

The Etches Collection

01929 270000

Our Museum of Jurassic Marine Life in Kimmeridge is the finest collection of Late Jurassic age fossils in Britain, all collected by just one man, Dr Steve Etches MBE.

 Re-opens 17th May 20221. 10am – 5pm (last admission 4.15pm).

Farmer Palmer's Farm Park - Dorset attraction

Farmer Palmer’s Farm Park

01202 622022

OPEN DAILY – bring your little explorers on an adventure to Farmer Palmer’s Farm Park! Morning and afternoon sessions available. Pre-booking is now essential.

Please check website.

Forde Abbey and Gardens - Dorset attraction

Forde Abbey and Gardens

01460 221290

The Kennard Family welcomes you to their unique 850 year old house and 30 acres of award-winning gardens.

Gardens open daily throughout the year from 10.00am – 4.30pm (last admission) until 31st October. House open from 17th May, Tuesdays to Fridays, 12-3:30pm (last admission 3pm)

GO APE Moors Valley - Dorset attraction

GO APE Moors Valley

0845 519 2797

Live life adventurously at GO APE Moors Valley! NEW FOR 2020 – take to the trees without the need for a harness on Go Ape’s newest ‘Nets Adventure’.

 Open all year around, but opening times vary. Please check website for details or call 0845 519 2797.

Lulworth Castle and Park - Dorset attraction

Lulworth Castle & Park

01929 400352

Welcome to the most beautiful castle in the south, set in the heart of the privately owned Lulworth Estate. This magnificent C17th building is steeped in history.

Park and grounds open Sundays to Thursdays, 10:30am – 4pm. Castle open from 17th May, Sundays to Thursdays, 10:30am – 5pm. Please check the website before visiting.

Mapperton House and Gardens - Dorset attraction

Mapperton House & Gardens

01308 862645

Voted the “Nation’s Finest Manor House’ by Country Life and location of the 2015 film ‘Far From the Madding Crowd’. Glorious Jacobean manor with Earl of Sandwich Collection, overlooking 15-acre garden.

House and Gardens open Sundays to Thursdays, 11am-5pm. Mapperton House will be open for limited pre-booked tours from 5 July 2021.

Nothe Fort - Weymouth - Dorset attraction

Nothe Fort

01305 766228

Award-winning visitor attraction offering low cost entry and great value come rain or shine.

Built by the Victorians to protect Portland Harbour, Nothe Fort is one of the best preserved forts of its kind. The advances in technology that affected the fort are explained through many displays, exhibits and audio visual facilities located on the ramparts, gun decks and maze of underground passageways.

 Outside areas open now. Inside areas opening 17th May 2021. Please check website for more details.

RockReef & PierZip at Bournemouth Pier

RockReef & PierZip Bournemouth

01202 983983

RockReef is an all year, all weather exciting activity attraction located at the end of the iconic Bournemouth Pier. Outside is the awesome PierZip, the first pier to shore zip wire in the world!

Discover & Fun Trails for Toddlers & Children

PierZip opens 15th May. RockReef opens 29th May. 10am-7pm, season depending. Please check website for more details.

Royal Signals Museum - Dorset attraction

Royal Signals Museum

01258 482248

DISCOVER – Spies, Codes and Secret Agents. Code and Code-Breaking! From Semaphore to Satellites and Fire to Fibre optics – EXPERIENCE the interactive History, Science and Technology of communications.

Discovery & Fun Trails for Toddlers & Children

Currently closed.

Sherborne Castle

Sherborne Castle

01935 813182

Explore Sherborne Castle’s 18th Century Capability Brown gardens and landscape

The Castle reopens 23 July. Open until 31st August every day from 12pm to 4pm, last entry 3pm. Open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for the first three weekends in September.

Shire Hall historic courthouse museum in Dorchester

Shire Hall Historic Courthouse Museum

01305 261849

You cannot pigeon-hole the experience of visiting Shire Hall – forget everything you think you know about museums!

Open seven days a week from 10am to 4pm.

Splashdown - Dorset attraction


01202 716000

Experience some of the UK’s most exciting water flumes at the South’s favourite waterpark. Complete with sun terraces and café.

Reopening 21st May. Opening hours vary by season. Please visit our website or call us on 01202 716000.

Swanage Railway - Dorset attraction

Swanage Railway

01929 425800

The Swanage Railway is the picture postcard branch line to the seaside. Steam trains run for six miles weaving their way through the beautiful Purbeck countryside.

Trains operate daily. See the website for timetable and operating calendar.

The Tank Museum - Dorset attraction

The Tank Museum

01929 405096

The Tank Museum brings history to life, with the world’s best collection of tanks and explosive live displays. Exploring ten powerful exhibitions, you will come face to face with almost 300 armoured vehicles.

Reopens 17th May. Open 7 days a week, 10am – 5pm. Closed Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day.

Tutankhamun Exhibition - Dorset tourist attraction

Tutankhamun Exhibition

01305 269571

Experience the magnificence and wonder of the world’s greatest discovery of ancient treasure – Tutankhamun’s tomb, treasures and mummy.

Open from 19th May to 31st October, daily from 10am to 4pm.

SEA LIFE in Weymouth

Weymouth Sea Life Adventure Park

Come and join us for a fantastic SEA LIFE adventure both above and below the ocean! Discover a magical underwater world filled with a dazzling array of amazing creatures.

Open outside only. Open every day except Christmas Day and Boxing Day. Opening times vary. Please see the website for times.

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