As part of my amazing weekend away in Dorset, I stayed in the most adorable cottage to rent in Dorset called Sturthill Stable, through Classic Cottages. The cottage was perfect for our adventure in Dorset, and provided us with a great base to explore both Dorset and beyond. We spent the weekend following the coastal roads, spending the morning at Durdle Door, the afternoon at Lulworth Cove, and then sunbathing in the sunshine in the morning at Hive Beach just down the road.
Dorset is a land steeped in history, from the fossils at Charmouth on the Jurassic Coast to The Cobb at Lyme Regis. And you can also venture to inland Dorset, with its hamlets of thatched cottages, wooden-beamed pubs and watermills, and you’ll feel as though you’ve walked into a living, breathing Thomas Hardy novel. We only spent a weekend in Dorset, but you could easily spend a week here exploring the AONB, eating ice creams at the beach, and dining with Hugh at River Cottage.
Here are some of my favourite cottages to rent in Dorset….
Classic Cottages provide the most amazing holiday cottages in Dorset are perfectly placed for exploring our amazing ancient county. As well, as beautiful views across the hills, the coastline is also pretty special, with cliffs rippling up out of layers of centuries old sediment, bringing fossilised treasures for lucky beachcombers. For the ultimate adventure in Dorset, you’ll need good walking boots and perhaps your swimming gear to have a paddle around Lulworth Cove and swim through Durdle Door.
There are many historic and beautiful towns to explore; Sherborne with its Abbey and distinctive architecture, Cerne Abbas home of the famous giant, from Lyme Regis in the west, past Charmouth, Weymouth, to Corfe Castle near Swanage and Studland, and Bournemouth in the east of the county, you’ll need to keep coming back for more.
Whether you choose country or coast, choosing your base for the weekend won’t be hard, with an amazing array of options through Classic Cottages. Whether you fancy a pretty village setting, a farm stay like us or somewhere along the Jurassic Coast, you’ll always be close to the sea, or around the corner from an amazing view. There are also an array of dog-friendly cottages if you want to bring your four-legged friend.
In this blog post, I have reviewed the cottage we stayed in for our weekend in Dorset but also included another four amazing cottages to rent in Dorset.
Here are my favourite five cottages to rent in Dorset:
Our home for the weekend was the wonderful Sturthill Stable, a beautiful barn conversion at the heart of a working dairy farm is and only 15 minutes from Dorset’s spectacular Jurassic Coast. The cottage is set in a rural setting which will please the whole family, with tennis courts on site, countryside walks, village pubs and cows just outside your window. When we arrived after a weary four hour drive from Buckinghamshire, we were welcomed with open arms, by the lovely owner who showed us the cottage and where everything was.
The cottage was surprisingly big, with a large open plan-kitchen and dining room, large lounge, games room and wash facilities downstairs, and then upstairs there were three bedrooms, one of which was a master bedroom with ensuite and king-size bed, whilst the other two rooms were set out as twin rooms, with an adjacent bathroom. I managed to reserve the master bedroom for myself, which was lovely to get some space and relax in a large bed, with a skylight looking out up to the stars, whilst the other girls split themselves between the two other rooms. We spent the most of our time at the cottage in the huge kitchen and dining room, where we had dinner both nights and played games in the evening.
Nearby is the bustling town of Bridport, which has some great cafes, and a street market on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and also a great fish and chip shop which we dined from after our long drive from London on the Friday night. Also just around the corner is the Hive Beach Cafe at Burton Bradstock, overlooking the beach, which serves locally caught seafood, and delicious cakes. And this is also where some of the scenes for Broadchurch were filmed a few years ago. Also a short drive away is the seaside town of Lyme Regis, with its iconic Cobb, and Monmouth beach, where you can hunt for fossils, enjoy the cafes and restaurants or just relax on the beach with an ice cream.
We loved Sturthill Stable for our weekend adventure in Dorset and we would love to come back soon, to explore this region even more. It is a great base for exploring this beautiful part of Dorset!
If you’re looking for a stereotypically British cottage, this pretty thatched cottage is in the tranquil historic village of Tolpuddle, and also is perfectly located for an adventure along the coast, as it’s only 15 miles from the World Heritage Jurassic coast.
Tolpuddle Cottage is an ideal base for a family holiday or perfect for friends to meet up, the village is surrounded by beautiful countryside, perfect for relaxing walks and there is a great little play area for children of all ages just two minutes from the cottage. The cottage has handy cosy under-floor heating and offers families and groups of friends a very sociable open plan ground floor, with kitchen, dining and living areas along with a ground floor cloakroom. Upstairs you will find the master bedroom with a king-size bed and ensuite shower-room. The second bedroom has a super-king size bed which can be split into two singles and the third bedroom has a truckle bed.
Tolpuddle is also a great location itself, with a great local pub where guests will receive a 10% discount. Located in the area is Monkey World and Bovington Tank Museum, Casterbridge (Dorchester), the Tutankhamun Museum, historic Athelhampton House and Gardens, Swanage Steam Train, National Trust’s Corfe Castle and the Dinosaur Museum, which children will remember long after their visit. And if you want to venture further afield along the coast, there are beaches at Studland and Weymouth only a short drive away, or you can visit the impressive Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door.
If you and your partner fancy a romantic weekend in Dorset, The Stables is the perfect base. This single-storey spacious cottage sleeps two people and is only around the corner from Dorset’s World Heritage Jurassic Coast.
Located in rural Dorset, between within Dorchester and the Saxon town of Wareham, within the grounds of the owners’ home, The Stables is self-contained with its own private garden, which is a gardener’s delight – secluded, west-facing and with wonderful flowers, shrubs and trees dividing the lawned areas.
The cottage offers an entrance hall with access to the ensuite bedroom and the comfortable sitting-room with French windows out to the garden. On a separate level, down a small slope is the separate kitchen/diner where you can cook dinner in the evening together and breakfast in the mornings.
This cottage is within easy reach of Lulworth Cove and the beaches of Studland and Weymouth, and offers break-taking scenery along the coast, with a choice of sandy beaches, rocky coves, clifftop walks and woodland strolls. The Purbeck peninsula takes in: Studland, where there are miles of sandy beaches and shallow waters, with a backdrop of pine woods and heathland surrounding the eastern fringes of Poole Harbour; Swanage, a traditional seaside town; and then the dramatic rock formations of Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door as you head to the west.
If you’re looking for a holiday right on the beach, this is the cottage for you. At Chalet on the Beach, you can relax on your veranda with a glass of something refreshing, as you watch the gentle waves of Monmouth Beach. It’s a great location for an exploration of the world famous Heritage Site, the Jurassic Coast, where you can find dozens of large ammonites on the exposed boulders and bedrock at low tide; some of the rocks date back to 199 million years ago.
The open plan living area has a compact fitted kitchen with an under-counter fridge, complete with ice-box for that perfect gin and tonic. The wet-room has a shower, with WC and washbasin and for that added luxury it has under-floor heating. The stairs lead up to the mezzanine level sleeping area, with a super comfy mattress and views looking up to the stars!
Monmouth Beach is much quieter than the main town beach, a mixture of sand and rock, and is a fantastic location all year round. From your deck you can look across Lyme Bay to Golden Cap, the highest point along the south coast, an energetic but very worthwhile walk, The Anchor Inn at Seatown your reward at the end; further out in the bay you may be lucky enough to see a pod of dolphins.
If you can tear yourself away from the coast, River Cottage HQ is a 5 minute drive, treat yourself to a special holiday meal or even a one-day cookery course and the River Cottage Canteen and Deli, in nearby Axminster, is just 15 minutes away.
The teal green door sold this place immediately after I saw it. It is quintessentially British, located in a tranquil Dorset village. Ivy Cottage is just the sort of place you may picture in your mind when someone says British village cottage, set in the midst of an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in the pretty village of Cattistock.
This traditional ham stone and flint, Grade II Listed terraced cottage has been renovated to provide a delightful country retreat, full of character, with modern kitchen and bathroom facilities. This cottage to rent in Dorset has all the space you need, with sitting room with wood burner, south-facing patio, enclosed garden, double bedroom with king sized bed and twin bedroom.
Ivy Cottage is also a great base to explore this wonderful part of the UK, with Lyme Regis being well worth a visit, The Isle of Purbeck only an hour’s drive, and Durdle Door, Lulworth Cove, Old Harry’s Rocks, and the South West Coast Path connecting them all.
*This was a sponsored press trip in collaboration with Classic Cottages
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