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Find cottages in DorchesterVisit Dorchester

On the banks of the River Frome sits Dorchester, the county town of Dorset. A popular and historic market town, Dorchester is nestled just South of the Dorset Downs and less than 8 miles away from the seaside town of Weymouth and the Dorset coast.

The busy town centre's focal point is the Town Pump and impressive clock tower surrounded by bars, restaurants and shops. There's a French Market that is held annually every August, which attracts locals and visitors alike and a number of historic walks that start off in the centre of town. The nearby Tank museum will be a guaranteed hit with the kids.

Dorchester has a long and rich history; being occupied since Roman times and contributing to its cultural identity over the years. Visitors can explore this history through the excellent themed walks around town, which tell a fascinating historical tale. Visit the Roman ruins of Maiden Castle, one of the most significant Roman sites in the UK and the Dinosaur Museum is an absolute must for children and adults alike. There are a number of other historical but fun sights and locations in the area that make the town a great choice for a family holiday, such as the Tutankhamen Exhibition.

To find accommodation in the area see our selection of holiday cottages in Dorchester and start planning your holiday now. Dorchester has an abundance of activities and sights for fun-filled family breaks, a week of exploring the history in the area, or an indulgent week of restaurant meals and shopping trips.

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Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
2

"The places Hardy roamed as a boy, and later enshrined as rustic Wessex . . ."

Lying in the picturesque Piddle Valley in West Dorset are the twelve acres of glorious rolling countryside in which these holiday cottages are set. No longer a working farm, Doles Ash Farm now has an established vineyard producing English wines. The splendid range of barns here have been sympathetically converted to form a group of very comfortable cottages, interestingly clustered around a grass courtyard with the owners’ 18th-century house. Facilities include an indoor heated swimming pool, sauna, games barn with table tennis, snooker and table football, and tennis court. An alternative property in Piddletrenthide village (1 mile) is The School House (ref DRV) which can have the use of the leisure facilities at Doles Ash Farm. Outside, there is a pond, vineyard, sheep and chickens to visit and plenty of space for walking, playing, exploring and relaxing in the shared grounds.
Doles Ash Farm is the ideal venue for group get togethers, giving guests the benefit of families and friends being in the same place while still enjoying some personal space in individual cottages. Four of the holiday cottages have enclosed gardens, ideal for dogs, with the remaining four having individual patios. The indoor heated swimming pool is open daily all year round and the building has full changing facilities, as well as a coin-operated sauna. The tennis court is also available all year round. The cottages, facilities and grounds enjoy an outstandingly peaceful setting with magnificent walks on the doorstep. Riding, golf, clay-shooting and fishing are all available locally.
Good shops can be found 8 miles away in Dorchester and 10 miles away in Sherborne. There is a host of local attractions and a long sandy beach within a half hour’s drive at Weymouth. Studland beaches and Swanage are also firm favourites with visitors.
The Piddle Valley is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty which boasts some of the prettiest villages in England and has a wealth of excellent family-friendly pubs to dine and relax in with the village of Godmanstone boasting the smallest pub in England. The beautiful village of Cerne Abbas, overseen by the legendary Cerne Giant, also lies just 3 miles from Doles Ash Farm. This is Thomas Hardy country with many of Hardy’s venues have changed little since his time. At Higher Bockhampton, standing among soaring beech trees, is the thatched cottage where the novelist was born.
Lovely cottages in a fabulous setting, what more could holidaymakers want. Shops 1 mile.

A very comfortable split-level barn conversion providing spacious accommodation with French doors leading to enclosed garden. Entrance into well-equipped modern kitchen with dining area. Steps up to sitting room with wood-burning stove and French doors to patio and garden. Twin bedroom with view to garden. Second twin bedroom. Up steps to attractive double bedroom with en-suite toilet and wash basin. Separate bathroom with over-bath shower and toilet.

  • Fuel charge (October - May) £30per week (£20 per short break)
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Enclosed garden with furniture

  • Wood-burning stove (except Keeper’s Cottage) – initial supply included, thereafter at cost
  • Electricity and full electric central heating (oil central heating in Keeper’s Cottage DFM) included (during October - May, a fuel charge applies - see individual cottage)
  • Bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cot and high chair by arrangement
  • TV
  • DVD
  • Microwave
  • Shared laundry room with washing machine and coin-operated tumble dryer
  • Wi-fi (£5 per week)
  • Payphone
  • Shared 12-acre grounds
  • Barbecue
  • Parking
  • Indoor heated swimming pool (36ft x 18ft) – available daily all year round
  • Sauna (coin-operated)
  • Shared games barn with table tennis, table football and small snooker table
  • Large grassed play area with swing, climbing frame, slide and badminton/volleyball net
  • Owners’ hard tennis court
  • NB: Fenced pond in grounds

Properties DGA, DGG, DFM, DFX, DGH, DGJ can be booked together for larger groups and family get-togethers. DGH & DGJ have interconnecting doors.

WAS
NOW
£496-£1285
Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
2

"The places Hardy roamed as a boy, and later enshrined as rustic Wessex . . ."

Lying in the picturesque Piddle Valley in West Dorset are the twelve acres of glorious rolling countryside in which these holiday cottages are set. No longer a working farm, Doles Ash Farm now has an established vineyard producing English wines. The splendid range of barns here have been sympathetically converted to form a group of very comfortable cottages, interestingly clustered around a grass courtyard with the owners’ 18th-century house. Facilities include an indoor heated swimming pool, sauna, games barn with table tennis, snooker and table football, and tennis court. An alternative property in Piddletrenthide village (1 mile) is The School House (ref DRV) which can have the use of the leisure facilities at Doles Ash Farm. Outside, there is a pond, vineyard, sheep and chickens to visit and plenty of space for walking, playing, exploring and relaxing in the shared grounds.
Doles Ash Farm is the ideal venue for group get togethers, giving guests the benefit of families and friends being in the same place while still enjoying some personal space in individual cottages. Four of the holiday cottages have enclosed gardens, ideal for dogs, with the remaining four having individual patios. The indoor heated swimming pool is open daily all year round and the building has full changing facilities, as well as a coin-operated sauna. The tennis court is also available all year round. The cottages, facilities and grounds enjoy an outstandingly peaceful setting with magnificent walks on the doorstep. Riding, golf, clay-shooting and fishing are all available locally.
Good shops can be found 8 miles away in Dorchester and 10 miles away in Sherborne. There is a host of local attractions and a long sandy beach within a half hour’s drive at Weymouth. Studland beaches and Swanage are also firm favourites with visitors.
The Piddle Valley is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty which boasts some of the prettiest villages in England and has a wealth of excellent family-friendly pubs to dine and relax in with the village of Godmanstone boasting the smallest pub in England. The beautiful village of Cerne Abbas, overseen by the legendary Cerne Giant, also lies just 3 miles from Doles Ash Farm. This is Thomas Hardy country with many of Hardy’s venues have changed little since his time. At Higher Bockhampton, standing among soaring beech trees, is the thatched cottage where the novelist was born.
Lovely cottages in a fabulous setting, what more could holidaymakers want. Shops 1 mile.

A spacious cottage offering convenient single-storey accommodation. Steps up to cottage entrance and open elevated patio. Living/dining room with wood-burning stove. Modern fitted kitchen. Three bedrooms; one double, one twin and one bunk (2ft 6in beds). Bathroom with over-bath shower, hand held shower attachment and toilet.

  • Fuel charge (October - May) £30per week (£20 per short break)
  • Dishwasher
  • Patio with furniture
  • Friday to Friday

  • Wood-burning stove (except Keeper’s Cottage) – initial supply included, thereafter at cost
  • Electricity and full electric central heating (oil central heating in Keeper’s Cottage DFM) included (during October - May, a fuel charge applies - see individual cottage)
  • Bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cot and high chair by arrangement
  • TV
  • DVD
  • Microwave
  • Shared laundry room with washing machine and coin-operated tumble dryer
  • Wi-fi (£5 per week)
  • Payphone
  • Shared 12-acre grounds
  • Barbecue
  • Parking
  • Indoor heated swimming pool (36ft x 18ft) – available daily all year round
  • Sauna (coin-operated)
  • Shared games barn with table tennis, table football and small snooker table
  • Large grassed play area with swing, climbing frame, slide and badminton/volleyball net
  • Owners’ hard tennis court
  • NB: Fenced pond in grounds

Properties DGA, DGG, DFM, DFX, DGH, DGJ can be booked together for larger groups and family get-togethers. DGH & DGJ have interconnecting doors.

WAS
NOW
£332-£829
Shortlist
Grade 5 Star rating
Sleeps
12
Bedrooms
4
Pets
2

"Greenwood Grange offers the ideal holiday combination - premium quality accommodation, fine facilities all within a family-run friendly and welcoming atmosphere, and it has achieved a Green Tourism Business Scheme Gold Award"

Set at Higher Bockhampton (which is Hardy’s ‘Upper Mellstock’), Greenwood Grange is a secret hideaway set in its own 4 acres of peaceful grounds and landscaped gardens. All the cottages have undergone a major refurbishment and offer the very highest quality accommodation and facilities, with each cottage having its own individually styled interior using natural and recycled materials where possible.
As well as offering plenty of space for strolling and relaxing, there are two en-tous-cas tennis courts, lawns for croquet and badminton, a children’s play area with swings and yurt (with toys and games) and a dogs’ exercise paddock, in addition to the organic vegetable garden and pick your own fruit area, with free range chickens providing eggs, to be enjoyed by all the family. There is also a magnificent Roman-style indoor heated swimming pool (complete with mural!) with full changing facilities, a large sauna and sitting area.
At the entrance of Greenwood Grange is Thorncombe Wood - a wildlife sanctuary from which a nature trail leads through magnificent chestnuts, beeches and oaks, and through 70 acres of black heath, furze, birch, holly, heather and rhododendrons. This is just one of many walks directly from the door over some of the most beautiful countryside in Dorset, perfect for healthy walks for dog lovers and all the family.
Those interested in the literary landscape can explore the locations of Hardy’s famous novels. Steeped in history, Greenwood Grange was built by Thomas Hardy’s father, whilst a short distance away is the thatched cottage where Hardy himself was born, built by his great-grandfather and little altered. At Lower Bockhampton, Hardy went to school and there is a lovely walk from there to the next village, Stinsford, where his heart is buried.
All around is a wealth of glorious National Trust countryside, pretty towns and villages as well as the beautiful coastline just 6 miles away. Excellent local village restaurants and pubs can be recommended. Kingston Maurward College with animal park, gardens, conference, function and education centre is within walking distance.
Dorchester (Roman Durnovaria and Hardy’s ‘Casterbridge’) is a pleasant walk away (2 miles) and a most attractive country town, with museums of the dinosaur and the military, swimming pool, golf (good golf can also be found at Weymouth and Charminster) and has plenty of good shops, restaurants and pubs. Also of interest is Prince Charles’s development at Poundbury, near Dorchester.
Weymouth is 8 miles with its Georgian seafront beach - ideal for castle building! It is overlooked by an elegant 3-mile level esplanade; there is swimming from the beach, and there are lots of traditional entertainments. Two nearby RSPB reserves are at Lodmoor and Radipole which has nature trails from which grebes, swans and warblers may be seen.
The beach at Ringstead Bay (6 miles) is known for its geology, fossils and the vegetation and wildlife of its undercliff; nearby can be seen the outlines of a village abandoned in the Middle Ages.
The Dorset World Heritage Coastal Path offers magnificent views and surprising sights, such as the natural arch of Durdle Door, and the almost circular cove of Lulworth, about 7 miles away.
Further west dotted along the coastline towards West Bay and the market town of Bridport are the ‘chocolate box’ villages of Burton Bradstock and Abbotsbury (famous for its swannery and gardens).
The area offers abundant river stretches for coarse or trout fishing, and sea angling from the coast.
Gardens flourish in the mild climate, and there are many to choose from: Mapperton Gardens, Kingston Lacey, Knowle Gardens, Compton Acres, Forde Abbey Gardens and the subtropical gardens at Abbotsbury are well worth an excursion. Shop 2 miles.

A very spacious ground floor property with its own large garden. Spacious beamed living/dining room with gas fire in ornamental fireplace, very high ceilings and Purbeck stone floor. Farmhouse-style kitchen. Two double bedrooms, one with en-suite bathroom with shower cubicle and toilet, one with en-suite shower room and toilet, each with TV. Double bedroom with TV and additional bunk beds (for +2). Twin bedroom (zip & link beds) with additional bunk beds (for +2) and TV. Bathroom with over-bath shower and toilet. Separate toilet.

  • Underfloor heating (except kitchen and one double bedroom, which have central heating)
  • Two cots
  • Widescreen TV
  • Stereo/CD
  • Double oven
  • Washer/dryer
  • Additional freezer
  • Additional fridge
  • Dishwasher
  • Large enclosed garden with patio and furniture
  • Charcoal barbecue
  • Ground floor facilities
  • Friday to Friday

  • Combined heating, electric, leisure facilities, bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cots and high chair by arrangement
  • Two TVs - with Freeview (one TV in DHR, three in DKG)
  • DVD
  • Microwave
  • Shared laundry room with freezer, washing machines and tumble dryers
  • Wi-fi
  • Garden furniture
  • Ample parking
  • Special welcome hampers by arrangement
  • NB: Pond in grounds

SUPERB INDOOR POOL AND SAUNA COMPLEX
Sensitively created in old stone to blend with the cottages, Greenwood Grange’s magnificent pool is open daily all the year round. For the exclusive use of visitors, it is spectacularly designed in Roman style, with a mural depicting an emperor and his hand-maidens.
* Fine 32-ft x 18-ft indoor heated swimming pool with full changing facilities (please bring own towels)
* Shallow ‘D’ end for young children’s supervised paddling
* Sitting area overlooking pool
* Six-person sauna
EXTENSIVE INDOOR AND OUTDOOR FACILITIES
Indoor Amenities (Games room closed November to March, except Christmas and New Year):
Set next to the pool building and sympathetically designed in stone and brick, the purpose-built leisure building has Freeview TVs and offers plenty of things to do, whatever the season.
* Table tennis, table football, bar billiards and full-sized pool table
* Fenced ‘under fives’ play area with play slide, play train and tot rocker
Outdoor amenities:
* Peaceful grounds extending to 4 acres
* Children’s play area with swings
* Two en-tout-cas tennis courts (or please bring your own racquets)
* Croquet lawn (equipment foc, or please bring your own)
* Badminton lawn (equipment foc, or please bring your own)
* Dogs’ exercise paddock

WAS
NOW
£1169-£3741
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
14
Bedrooms
7
Pets
2
The Stables Ref: DXS

The Stables is a detached stable conversion and benefits from a large, open-plan kitchen/dining-room with a high ceiling and beams, a living room with a wood-burning stove and also has its own garden with great views over the surrounding countryside. The holiday property stands in the grounds of the owners’ 650-acre organic dairy farm; there are lovely walks from the doorstep amid the farmland. The Dorset Gap is nearby for walks amid stunning scenery, while sandy bays and nature reserves can be found along the World Heritage Coastline just 18 miles away. Dorchester (Thomas Hardy’s Casterbridge) is within driving distance for a wide range of attractions, including a lively weekly market with the beautiful Maiden Castle sure to be a highlight. A trip to the charming town of Cerne Abbas with its Tudor architecture, tea rooms and the nearby Cerne Giant is also a must on any itinerary. The seaside town of Weymouth with splendid harbour, Georgian seafront and long sandy beach makes a great day out and the ferry for day trips to the Channel Islands also leaves from the town. Just a few of the pretty Dorset villages to explore are Abbotsbury with its sub-tropical garden and swannery, Milton Abbas (the first planned settlement in England) with whitewashed thatched cottages and the 14th-century abbey, NT Corfe Castle and Lulworth with famous natural cove and over the hill to Durdle Door. There are RSPB reserves at Arne near Wareham and two at Weymouth. With good golf courses in the vicinity and a selection of excellent inns and restaurants within 7 miles, this truly is an ideal location to suit a variety of holiday needs. Shop 5 miles, pub 1 mile.

One step to entrance. Large living room with wood-burning stove, beams and French doors. Large farmhouse-style kitchen with elec range (for cooking)/dining room with Belfast sink and butcher’s block. Bootroom. Shower room with toilet. Step from hall to remaining rooms. Double bedroom with en-suite bathroom with over-bath shower and toilet. Double bedroom. Three twin bedrooms. Bathroom with over-bath shower and toilet. Bathroom with shower cubicle and toilet. First floor: Two bedrooms each with low sloping ceiling; one double and one small twin. Bathroom with toilet.

  • Wood-burning stove - fuel included
  • Electricity, full oil central heating, bed linen and towels included
  • Two travel cots
  • Two high chairs
  • TV
  • DVD
  • Electric range included
  • Microwave
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Patio with furniture
  • Access to 650 acres of farmland
  • Parking (for 7 cars)
  • Natural spring water supply
  • No smoking
  • Friday to Friday

Note: The Stables (DXS) and Armswell House (DQT) can be booked together to sleep up to 28+4 people

WAS
NOW
£884-£2698
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
8
Bedrooms
4
Pets
2

Situated in the pretty village of Dewlish, surrounded by the rolling Dorset hills, these two highly individual and beautifully converted 18th-century farm buildings occupy a quiet corner of a courtyard on the edge of a
500-acre dairy and arable farm. Both are full of charm and character and are set around a shared outdoor heated swimming pool. Manor Farm Barn is detached, the larger of the holiday properties, and is arranged over three floors, offering eight en-suite bedrooms. The spacious living room has a beamed ceiling and French doors out to the courtyard, and there is a large, well-equipped farmhouse-style kitchen with range. Churn House offers four bedrooms, and boasts attractive brick and flint walls with pine panelling in the kitchen/dining room. Each has its own patio with furniture and bbq, and shared use of a games room. Children will enjoy watching the farm activities, with ducks and hens on site. There are bridle paths extending from the farm and many lovely walks to enjoy, with several inns nearby and a village pub just 150 yds away. The area is rich in history, and the landscape featured in Thomas Hardy’s novels. Nearby is Tolpuddle, made famous by the Tolpuddle Martyrs, Clouds Hill (NT) where Lawrence of Arabia lived, and Athelhampton, a 15th-century manor house set in fine gardens. The Dorset Coast is only 12 miles away, with unspoilt chalk cliffs, and the notable beauty spot of Lulworth Cove. Shop 11/2 miles.

All on ground floor. Entrance hall. Spacious living room with part brick and flint walls and gas fire. Large, modern-fitted kitchen/dining room with brick and flint walls and pine panelling. Utility. Four bedrooms; two double and two twin. Bathroom with shower cubicle and toilet. Shower room and toilet. Beamed throughout.

  • Gas ‘coal-effect’ fire included
  • Travel cot
  • Ground floor facilities

  • Electricity, full oil central heating, bed linen and towels included
  • Cot
  • High chair
  • Two TVs (one widescreen)
  • Video
  • Stereo/CD
  • Microwave
  • Washing machine
  • Tumble dryer
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Shared enclosed courtyard
  • Patio with furniture
  • Barbecue
  • Parking
  • Games room with table football, pool table, table tennis, children’s toys, two toilets and kitchen
  • Shared outdoor heated swimming pool (15ft x 30ft, depth range 3ft to 5ft, open 15 April- 15 October)

Note: DPU and DPT can be booked together to sleep 23 people, making it an ideal venue for corporate events and large families or groups. By prior arrangement, catering can also be provided and the games room can be converted into a conference room

WAS
NOW
£447-£1489
Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
5
Bedrooms
3
Pets
2

"The places Hardy roamed as a boy, and later enshrined as rustic Wessex . . ."

Lying in the picturesque Piddle Valley in West Dorset are the twelve acres of glorious rolling countryside in which these holiday cottages are set. No longer a working farm, Doles Ash Farm now has an established vineyard producing English wines. The splendid range of barns here have been sympathetically converted to form a group of very comfortable cottages, interestingly clustered around a grass courtyard with the owners’ 18th-century house. Facilities include an indoor heated swimming pool, sauna, games barn with table tennis, snooker and table football, and tennis court. An alternative property in Piddletrenthide village (1 mile) is The School House (ref DRV) which can have the use of the leisure facilities at Doles Ash Farm. Outside, there is a pond, vineyard, sheep and chickens to visit and plenty of space for walking, playing, exploring and relaxing in the shared grounds.
Doles Ash Farm is the ideal venue for group get togethers, giving guests the benefit of families and friends being in the same place while still enjoying some personal space in individual cottages. Four of the holiday cottages have enclosed gardens, ideal for dogs, with the remaining four having individual patios. The indoor heated swimming pool is open daily all year round and the building has full changing facilities, as well as a coin-operated sauna. The tennis court is also available all year round. The cottages, facilities and grounds enjoy an outstandingly peaceful setting with magnificent walks on the doorstep. Riding, golf, clay-shooting and fishing are all available locally.
Good shops can be found 8 miles away in Dorchester and 10 miles away in Sherborne. There is a host of local attractions and a long sandy beach within a half hour’s drive at Weymouth. Studland beaches and Swanage are also firm favourites with visitors.
The Piddle Valley is a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty which boasts some of the prettiest villages in England and has a wealth of excellent family-friendly pubs to dine and relax in with the village of Godmanstone boasting the smallest pub in England. The beautiful village of Cerne Abbas, overseen by the legendary Cerne Giant, also lies just 3 miles from Doles Ash Farm. This is Thomas Hardy country with many of Hardy’s venues have changed little since his time. At Higher Bockhampton, standing among soaring beech trees, is the thatched cottage where the novelist was born.
Lovely cottages in a fabulous setting, what more could holidaymakers want. Shops 1 mile.

This charming cottage is attached to the owners’ farmhouse, and has its own pretty garden. Large living/dining room with French doors to patio and garden. Modern fitted kitchen. Bathroom with three-quarter bath and toilet. Single bedroom. Stairs to first floor: Two attractive bedrooms; one double with 5ft bed and en-suite shower room with toilet, and one twin.

  • Fuel charge (October - May) £30per week (£20 per short break)
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Enclosed garden with furniture
  • Friday to Friday

  • Wood-burning stove (except Keeper’s Cottage) – initial supply included, thereafter at cost
  • Electricity and full electric central heating (oil central heating in Keeper’s Cottage DFM) included (during October - May, a fuel charge applies - see individual cottage)
  • Bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cot and high chair by arrangement
  • TV
  • DVD
  • Microwave
  • Shared laundry room with washing machine and coin-operated tumble dryer
  • Wi-fi (£5 per week)
  • Payphone
  • Shared 12-acre grounds
  • Barbecue
  • Parking
  • Indoor heated swimming pool (36ft x 18ft) – available daily all year round
  • Sauna (coin-operated)
  • Shared games barn with table tennis, table football and small snooker table
  • Large grassed play area with swing, climbing frame, slide and badminton/volleyball net
  • Owners’ hard tennis court
  • NB: Fenced pond in grounds

Properties DGA, DGG, DFM, DFX, DGH, DGJ can be booked together for larger groups and family get-togethers. DGH & DGJ have interconnecting doors.

WAS
NOW
£332-£829
Shortlist
Grade 5 Star rating
Sleeps
8
Bedrooms
4
Pets
0

"Greenwood Grange offers the ideal holiday combination - premium quality accommodation, fine facilities all within a family-run friendly and welcoming atmosphere, and it has achieved a Green Tourism Business Scheme Gold Award""Greenwood Grange offers the ideal holiday combination - premium quality accommodation, fine facilities all within a family-run friendly and welcoming atmosphere, and it has achieved a Green Tourism Business Scheme Gold Award"

Set at Higher Bockhampton (which is Hardy’s ‘Upper Mellstock’), Greenwood Grange is a secret hideaway set in its own 4 acres of peaceful grounds and landscaped gardens. All the cottages have undergone a major refurbishment and offer the very highest quality accommodation and facilities, with each cottage having its own individually styled interior using natural and recycled materials where possible.
As well as offering plenty of space for strolling and relaxing, there are two en-tous-cas tennis courts, lawns for croquet and badminton, a children’s play area with swings and yurt (with toys and games) and a dogs’ exercise paddock, in addition to the organic vegetable garden and pick your own fruit area, with free range chickens providing eggs, to be enjoyed by all the family. There is also a magnificent Roman-style indoor heated swimming pool (complete with mural!) with full changing facilities, a large sauna and sitting area.
At the entrance of Greenwood Grange is Thorncombe Wood - a wildlife sanctuary from which a nature trail leads through magnificent chestnuts, beeches and oaks, and through 70 acres of black heath, furze, birch, holly, heather and rhododendrons. This is just one of many walks directly from the door over some of the most beautiful countryside in Dorset, perfect for healthy walks for dog lovers and all the family.
Those interested in the literary landscape can explore the locations of Hardy’s famous novels. Steeped in history, Greenwood Grange was built by Thomas Hardy’s father, whilst a short distance away is the thatched cottage where Hardy himself was born, built by his great-grandfather and little altered. At Lower Bockhampton, Hardy went to school and there is a lovely walk from there to the next village, Stinsford, where his heart is buried.
All around is a wealth of glorious National Trust countryside, pretty towns and villages as well as the beautiful coastline just 6 miles away. Excellent local village restaurants and pubs can be recommended. Kingston Maurward College with animal park, gardens, conference, function and education centre is within walking distance.
Dorchester (Roman Durnovaria and Hardy’s ‘Casterbridge’) is a pleasant walk away (2 miles) and a most attractive country town, with museums of the dinosaur and the military, swimming pool, golf (good golf can also be found at Weymouth and Charminster) and has plenty of good shops, restaurants and pubs. Also of interest is Prince Charles’s development at Poundbury, near Dorchester.
Weymouth is 8 miles with its Georgian seafront beach - ideal for castle building! It is overlooked by an elegant 3-mile level esplanade; there is swimming from the beach, and there are lots of traditional entertainments. Two nearby RSPB reserves are at Lodmoor and Radipole which has nature trails from which grebes, swans and warblers may be seen.
The beach at Ringstead Bay (6 miles) is known for its geology, fossils and the vegetation and wildlife of its undercliff; nearby can be seen the outlines of a village abandoned in the Middle Ages.
The Dorset World Heritage Coastal Path offers magnificent views and surprising sights, such as the natural arch of Durdle Door, and the almost circular cove of Lulworth, about 7 miles away.
Further west dotted along the coastline towards West Bay and the market town of Bridport are the ‘chocolate box’ villages of Burton Bradstock and Abbotsbury (famous for its swannery and gardens).
The area offers abundant river stretches for coarse or trout fishing, and sea angling from the coast.
Gardens flourish in the mild climate, and there are many to choose from: Mapperton Gardens, Kingston Lacey, Knowle Gardens, Compton Acres, Forde Abbey Gardens and the subtropical gardens at Abbotsbury are well worth an excursion. Shop 2 miles.

A very comfortable cottage, with its own private entrance and garden. Full of character, it has been very well furnished and equipped. Entrance into charming, beamed open-plan sitting/dining room with rugs on flagstone floor, inglenook fireplace with wood-burning stove and kitchen area with range (for cooking) and Belfast sink. One small step down to twin bedroom (zip & link beds). Bathroom with toilet. Shower room with toilet. First floor: Master double bedroom with 5ft sleigh bed, sitting area with contemporary electric fire, LCD TV and designer hand wash basin. Step down to double bedroom with LCD TV. Further step down to twin bedroom (zip & link beds). Shower room with toilet.

  • Wood-burning stove – logs included
  • Electricity fire included
  • Range included
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Garden with furniture and barbecue

  • Combined heating, electric, leisure facilities, bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cots and high chair by arrangement
  • Two TVs - with Freeview (one TV in DHR, three in DKG)
  • DVD
  • Microwave
  • Shared laundry room with freezer, washing machines and tumble dryers
  • Wi-fi
  • Garden furniture
  • Ample parking
  • Special welcome hampers by arrangement
  • NB: Pond in grounds

SUPERB INDOOR POOL AND SAUNA COMPLEX
Sensitively created in old stone to blend with the cottages, Greenwood Grange’s magnificent pool is open daily all the year round. For the exclusive use of visitors, it is spectacularly designed in Roman style, with a mural depicting an emperor and his hand-maidens.
* Fine 32-ft x 18-ft indoor heated swimming pool with full changing facilities (please bring own towels)
* Shallow ‘D’ end for young children’s supervised paddling
* Sitting area overlooking pool
* Six-person sauna
EXTENSIVE INDOOR AND OUTDOOR FACILITIES
Indoor Amenities (Games room closed November to March, except Christmas and New Year):
Set next to the pool building and sympathetically designed in stone and brick, the purpose-built leisure building has Freeview TVs and offers plenty of things to do, whatever the season.
* Table tennis, table football, bar billiards and full-sized pool table
* Fenced ‘under fives’ play area with play slide, play train and tot rocker
Outdoor amenities:
* Peaceful grounds extending to 4 acres
* Children’s play area with swings
* Two en-tout-cas tennis courts (or please bring your own racquets)
* Croquet lawn (equipment foc, or please bring your own)
* Badminton lawn (equipment foc, or please bring your own)
* Dogs’ exercise paddock

WAS
NOW
£880-£2749
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
10
Bedrooms
5
Pets
0
Fryermayne Ref: E3237

Amidst peace and rural seclusion, yet only 4 miles from the county town of Dorchester, this spacious and very comfortable house stands on the owners’ 160-acre working farm. Converted from the former stables and adjoining two farm cottages, it offers accommodation of a very high standard and has a cosy woodburner (logs included) and range-style cooker with double oven. Equally suitable for less mobile guests, it has wheelchair access, a ground floor bedroom and shower room with grab rails. It makes a wonderfully relaxing base from which to explore Dorset’s lovely Hardy country and nearby Jurassic coast, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Broadmayne village, 0.5 miles, boasts a pub and shop, and Dorchester offers a myriad delights including four museums, a Roman villa and Maiden Castle. The coast, 3 miles, has been awarded World Heritage status - an area extending from beyond Lyme Regis to Poole Harbour, with glorious scenery, walks and beaches as well as plenty of fossil hunting. Inland, attractions as varied as the Cerne Abbas Giant and Bovington Tank Museum invite exploration, a network of footpaths and bridleways starts from the door. Golf, fishing and riding are found nearby. This property has received a 4 star Gold Award grading from Visit England. Shop and pub 0.5 miles.

Ground floor: Living room with French doors. Kitchen with dining area. Utility room. 1 twin bedroom (zip and link, can be double by arrangement). Shower room with toilet. First floor: 4 bedrooms: 2 double (5ft), one with en-suite bathroom with bath, shower attachment and toilet, one with en-suite shower room and toilet, 2 twin (one zip and link, can be double by arrangement). Bathroom with toilet.

Woodburner in living room inc. Oil CH, gas, elec, bed linen and towels inc. Two cots. T/cot. Two h/chairs. Freeview TV. DVD. Stereo/CD. Gas hob. Electric oven. M/wave. W/machine. T/dryer. D/washer. F/freezer. Wi-fi. Enclosed garden with patio and furniture. BBQ. Ample parking. Games room with table tennis and table football. No smoking. Wheelchair access. Friday to Friday. Visit England 4 Star Gold Award.

WAS
NOW
£720-£1728
Shortlist
Grade 3 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
1
Buzzard Cottage Ref: 27160

This thatched, Grade II, end-terrace holiday cottage is near a traditional village pub and is in an excellent location for walking over the Wessex Ridgeway and Dorset Hills. Cerne Abbas, 2 miles away, is home of the Cerne Giant which was carved into the chalk hillside 1500 years ago. Within easy reach are the south coast seaside resorts of West Bay and Weymouth, and the towns of Sherbourne and Dorchester. Shop 2½ miles, pub and restaurant 400 yards.

Ground floor: Living room with wooden floor. Dining room with slate floor. Kitchen with slate floor. 1 twin bedroom. Bathroom with bath, shower cubicle and toilet. First floor: 2 bedrooms: 1 double, 1 twin, both with beams.

Woodburner in living room (initial fuel included). Economy 7 central heating, electricity, bed linen and towels included. Travel cot. High chair. Freeview TV. DVD. CD. Electric cooker. Washer/dryer. Dishwasher. Enclosed lawned garden with patio, sitting-out area and furniture. Barbecue. Parking (1 car). Cycle store. Welcome pack. Pet free of charge. No smoking. Friday to Friday. NB: 4 steps in garden.

WAS
NOW
£0-£0
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
2
Rainbow Lodge Ref: 24753

Shared indoor heated swimming pool and many other on-site facilities

This lovely, detached holiday cabin is set in a quiet spot on the popular Warmwell Leisure Resort. The site is set in over 40 acres of woodland and offers many facilities (including shared indoor heated swimming pool) that can be enjoyed all year (except from end November to the week before Christmas). Set in the heart of Thomas Hardy country, just a short drive to the stunning Jurassic coastline and the seaside town of Weymouth with promenade and sandy beach. The Sealife Centre, Monkey World, Tank Museum and Abbotsbury Swannery are all nearby. The Purbeck Heritage coastline is a short drive, and includes the beaches at Durdle Door, Lulworth Cove, Studland and Warbarrow Bay. There are a number of charming villages such as Corfe with its medieval castle (NT). Swanage is a typical seaside town with its Blue Flag beach, boat trips, shops, pubs and restaurants and Durlston Country Park. It also boasts Swanage Steam Railway - the perfect way to enjoy the breathtaking scenery along the 6-mile track. The walled Saxon town of Wareham, with its weekly market, shops and quayside is also worth a visit. Shop, pub and restaurant on site.

All on ground floor: Living/dining room/kitchen. Utility room. 3 bedrooms: 1 double with en-suite shower room and toilet, 2 twin. Bathroom with shower over bath and toilet.

Gas central heating, gas, electricity, bed linen and towels included. DVD. Gas hob. Electric oven. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Freezer. Decked area and furniture. Parking (3 cars). Indoor swimming pool. Golf facilities, sports complex, roller skating. Games room (£6 per person before 6pm, £20per week for adults, £10per week for children after 6pm). Dry-ski slope (available all year at cost). Fishing lake with two free passes and are available throughout the day. No smoking. Friday to Friday. NB: There are ponds, streams and a water feature in the grounds. The facilities, (except ski slope), games room, shop, pub and restaurant are not available from the end of November to the week before Christmas.

WAS
NOW
£428-£1660
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
0
Milbury Cottage Ref: DAAF

Situated in a conservation area and an AONB, in the quaint village of Bradford Peverell, this delightful flint and brick adjoining holiday home for six has a sun room and main bedroom en-suite. Ideally located for exploring Dorchester, 3 miles, Weymouth, 8 miles, and the famous World Heritage Jurassic Coast, 8 miles. There is a wealth of attractions to visit, Lulworth Cove, Durdle Door Arch, The Tank Museum, Abbotsbury Swannery, Maiden Castle and glorious country walks, cycling and village pubs to wine and dine in. Shops
3 miles, pub 2 miles.

Large living room with open wood burning fire. Dining room. Well-equipped kitchen with tiled floor. Sun room. Separate toilet. First floor: Two double bedrooms, one with 5ft bed and en-suite wet room with toilet. Twin bedroom. Bathroom with toilet.

  • Open wood burning fire - initial fuel included, thereafter available at cost
  • Electricity, full oil central heating, bed linen and towels included
  • Travel cot
  • High chair
  • Two Freeview TVs
  • DVD
  • Radio/CD
  • Microwave
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge/freezer
  • Broadband connection
  • Enclosed lawned garden with patio and furniture
  • Barbecue
  • Carport (for 1 car); additional roadside parking
  • Secure cycle store
  • No smoking
  • Friday to Friday

WAS
NOW
£325-£1257
Shortlist
Grade 4 Star rating
Sleeps
6
Bedrooms
3
Pets
0
Riverside Close Ref: W40220

Thatched cottage close to village centre

Tucked away in a peaceful location within a small exclusive close, is this charming semi-detached thatched cottage. The cottage has been constructed to a good standard and boasts an en-suite shower room in the main bathroom, as well as a sun trap conservatory and lawned garden. Quietly situated beside the River Cerne, a delightful footpath leads you into the timeless, picturesque centre of Cerne Abbas, with the world famous ’Cerne Giant’ cut into the chalk hillside close by. Within a short drive are the beaches and harbour of Weymouth. Shop 300 yards, pub and restaurant 250 yards.

Ground floor: Living room with sofa bed. Dining room/kitchen. Utility room. Shower room with toilet. First floor: 3 bedrooms: 1 double with en-suite shower room with toilet, 2 single. Bathroom with toilet.

Central heating and electricity included (£20per week November-March). Bed linen included. DVD. CD. Microwave. Washing machine. Dishwasher. Enclosed lawned garden with patio and furniture. Parking (2 cars). No smoking.

WAS
NOW
£366-£1210
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