Glamping in Dorset…

Our stay in a Shepherd’s Hut near the Jurassic Coast:

I love a spot of glamping so when Matt surprised me with a birthday trip to Dorset I was so excited.  Even as we pulled up to the very grand Warmwell House I had no idea where we were going to be staying. Serena greeted us, we grabbed our bags and followed her through the beautiful grounds to our home for the next two nights.  A clearing in the woodland revealed ‘Sika’ the shepherds hut. Serena was so welcoming, she gave us a tour and invited us to explore the gardens and maze. She also suggested a visit to the kitchen garden where we could help ourselves to vegetables. Such a lovely little touch.  Glamping in Dorset was going to be a wonderful way to celebrate my birthday.



The Shepherd’s Hut:

Our two night stay did not disappoint. The hut came with everything we needed and every little detail had been taken care of.  At one end was the cosy double bed with plenty of storage underneath and a very neat table with built-in bench seats. At the other end was the kitchen with everything you could need for a glamping escape. This included a sink, hob, crockery, cutlery, biscuits and some Dorset tea. The log burner completed the coziness of the hut and we loved cooking dinner on the fire pit under the stars.  Behind the hut was a large cool box, logs and bins. Sika has a separate bathroom hut with a huge shower and one of the best composting toilets I have ever used. Matt said his main concern when booking somewhere was the toilet. He knows I’m a little bit fussy with these things after some of the horrendous long drop toilets we experienced when camping in Australia! But I was pleasantly surprised with this luxurious little bathroom and its cleanliness. If this is something that worries you, don’t be put off as Warmwell House has got it covered in a very clean and hygienic way! The setting is beautiful and although very close to all of Dorset’s main attractions it felt secluded from the world, very private and peaceful.

Things to do in Dorset:

Warmwell is a short drive from the beautiful Jurassic coast so over the two days we explored Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door. We walked along the steep coastal path in-between the two, taking in the beautiful views and stopping for a much earned pub lunch and cider at the Lulworth Cove Inn.  In the afternoons we indulged in the art of doing nothing and relaxed at the hut. Reading and soaking up the afternoon sun with a celebratory glass of champagne and two gorgeous evenings by the fire pit. It was the perfect birthday treat.

Dorset is fantastic for walking and hiking and my favourite thing to do is to combine this with pub stops! The walk from the picturesque village of Worth Matravers to Winspit Quarry on the coast is a fun one. The disused quarry is right on the cliff and the views out to see are gorgeous. Don’t miss the Square and Compass pub, apart from alcohol the only food on the menu is pies and pasties. There’s a quirky fossil museum inside too. It’s a great stop after a long walk. Komoot has a list of their top 10 best walks around Worth Matravers, worth checking out for planning adventures.

Durdle Door is another famous beauty spot on the Jurassic Coast, it’s a steep walk down to the beach but the views are beautiful.

For something a little different, head to Sculpture by the Lakes an outdoor art venue set in 26 acres of Dorset countrside.

‘Sika’ is charming, cosy, shabby chic and luxurious all at the same time.  If you are looking for a glamping retreat in Dorset that ticks all the boxes then this is it and having the Jurassic Coast on the doorstep is simply wonderful.

For more glamping inspiration take a look at my other posts on unique places to stay: 

All aboard the Big Green Bus: The Ultimate Glamping Retreat

Beach Hut Living

Unique Places to stay in the UK

What are your favourite glamping spots? Do you have any recommendations for glamping spots in Dorset? I’m always looking for recommendations on unusual places to stay so let me know in the comments below.



A weekend in the Purbecks, Dorset…

I love exploring locally; sometimes I think it’s easy to forget what’s on the doorstep.  So having had withdrawal symptoms from campervan living in California and with the weekend free, Matt and I decided to head to the Purbecks in our van for a mini adventure.  The Isle of Purbeck or the Purbecks for short is nestled nicely on the Jurassic coast in Dorset.  A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2001 the Jurassic Coast got its name due to its impressive geology….and runs for 95 miles all the way to Devon.  You can actually walk the whole thing along the South West Coast Path.
We stayed at Burnbake campsite near Corfe Castle.  The campsite does not take reservations and there are no marked pitches so turn up, pick a spot that takes your fancy and that’s it!  The campground has a small shop on site, a toilet and shower block, washing up facilities, laundry room and a pop up café with a tent and log burner.  The cafe serves up a great English breakfast for £5.  The cost was £12 per night for one adult with a tent and car or campervan plus £6 per extra person.  Burnbake allows campfires but they must be contained, we hired a fire pit for £4 and bought logs from the shop, perfect!


Worth Matravers was at the top of my list of places to visit.  It is a tiny village full of Purbeck stone cottages, a duck pond, tea rooms and the Square and Compass pub.  From there we followed the coastal path to Winspit quarry on the edge of the cliffs.  It is very popular with climbers and also has some very dark, eerie caves to explore.  We continued along to the National Coastwatch Institution lookout station and St Aldhelm’s Chapel.  This 13th century chapel is still in use today and has very old graffiti on the stone walls inside, some of which from what I could make out were from the 16th century!  This lovely walk was around 5 – 6 miles and only one thing was on our mind on the way back…a cider and pasty at the Square and Compass.  We made it back to Worth Matravers and went straight to the pub for our well-earned treats!  I love the fact that this pub only serves pies and pasties, so simple!  It also randomly has a small fossil museum inside, a great showcase of all the amazing fossils and artefacts uncovered along this magnificent stretch of coast.
A Sunday stop off at Lulworth Cove and lunch at the Lulworth Cove Inn was a nice way to finish the weekend before heading home.  This perfect horse shoe shaped bay has crystal clear turquoise water and is beautiful all year round.  There are some fantastic walks along the cliff top from the cove, we just had enough time to go on my favourite stroll to Durdle Door before we said goodbye.
More things to do in Dorset...
Corfe Castle, towering high above the village of Corfe this is a great place to stop for a photo opportunity, we didn’t have time to climb up but I loved seeing the imposing ruins on the drive to and from the campsite.
Poole harbour is another great spot for exploring, having lunch or for a weekend break.  We stayed at Hotel du Vin right in the harbour for Matt’s birthday earlier this year: A weekend in Poole, Dorset.  The sun was shining and a lovely boat trip around Brownsea Island rounded off the weekend nicely.
Swanage has a steam railway, which travels 6 miles from Swanage to Norden, one of the stops on the line is Corfe Castle, this would make for a great day out.  Buy a day ticket or spend an evening dining on it,  I’ve not had the chance to go on it yet but I would love to experience the dining train.
Dorset has the prefect mixture for adventure with coast, valleys, rugged cliff tops and tiny village hideaways to explore.  There is so much to do in this beautiful area I still need to go back for more!