Things To Do

Monkey World
Set amongst the woodland of Dorset lays 65 acres of sanctuary for over 240 primates. Monkey World was set up in 1987 by Jim Cronin to provide abused Spanish beach chimps with a permanent, stable home. Today Monkey World works in conjunction with foreign governments from all over the world to stop the illegal smuggling of apes out of Africa and Asia. At the park visitors can see more than 240 primates of 15 different species.There are currently 60 chimpanzees at Monkey World, which makes it the largest group outside Africa. Monkey World has rescued chimps from Spain, Greece, France, England, Austria, The Netherlands, Israel, Cyprus, Dubai, Mexico and Taiwan.


Abbotsbury Swannery
Abbotsbury Swannery is unique. This is the only place in the world where you are able to walk through the heart of a colony of nesting Mute Swans.HistoryThe Swannery was established by Benedictine Monks who built a monastery at Abbotsbury during the 1040’s. The monks farmed the swans to produce food for their lavish banquets. St Peter’s monastery was destroyed in 1539 during the dissolution. Some of the ruins are still visible around St Nicholas’ Church in the village. Since that time the Swannery has been under the stewardship of the Ilchester Estates.


Adventure Wonderland
This year all your favourite themes and characters have come together as Adventure Wonderland, making it Dorset’s Number 1 Theme Park for Boys and Girls alike.So if you’re a would-be Pirate, an intrepid Explorer, an orbiting Astronaut, a wild Cowboy, a Mad Hatter or just a plain old fashioned Fun Lover, then you and your family have got a real treat in store!Adventure Wonderland is an all inclusive Park which combines the timeless fun and games of the Alice in Wonderland story with the thrilling outdoor Adventure rides of the Main Park and the undercover Lost Aztec World of Wild Thing!Add to this magical mixture the largest Themed Hedge Maze in the South, the hilarious Panto and Magic Shows, the all important Weather Proof fun and a themed selection of Shopping outlets and Cafes (so you can stay all day) and you can see why this unique Park has been such a regular award winner!


Athelhampton House
Athelhampton House and its estate and gardens have been in private ownership for over five hundred years. We thank you for your interest which will help to ensure that Athelhampton will continue to flourish.Athelhampton provides a wealth of History, with stunning interiors, antique furnishings, paintings and porcelain. The extensive gardens, with their ham stone courts, water features and creative planting are delightful throughout the seasons. The River Walk takes you through a natural habitat along the banks of the River Piddle and the historic dovecote with its white doves occupies the side lawn.


The Tank Museum
The tank was a British invention that changed warfare for ever when it was introduced in World War One – and Bovington has been the home of the tank ever since. From the Somme to Tiananmen Square or D-Day to Desert Storm the tank has played a part in shaping history – and it continues to do so today.The Tank Museum is the only place where many of these rare and historic vehicles can be seen. Fresh from a £16m investment in new exhibitions & facilities, with almost 200 vehicles on display in 6 large halls, you will come face-to-face with tanks that have seen action in all the major wars of the 20th century.


Brownsea Island
Brownsea Island offers a varied and beautiful landscape for enjoying the wonders of nature; from the patchworks of woodland, heath and grassy fields in the peaceful and secluded interior, to the cliffs and beaches of the coastline, which offer breathtaking views across the harbour to the Purbeck Hills.Brownsea, home to BBC’s Autumnwatch in 2008, is described by Bill Oddie ‘as the best place for seeing wildlife in Dorset.’ The island is home to a thriving population of the scarce and threatened red squirrel and offers winter shelter to a quarter of the UK’s winter population of avocets; a black and white bird with a long, curved beak.


Corfe Castle
One of Britain’s most majestic ruins and once a controlling gateway through the Purbeck Hills, the castle boasts breathtaking views and several waymarked walks. Steeped in history, an interactive exhibition uncovers many stories of treachery and treason. Defended during the Civil War by the prudent and virtuous Lady Bankes, the castle fell, due to betrayal from within, and was subsequently partially destroyed by the Parliamentarians. Many fine Norman and early English features remain.


Moors Valley Country Park
The 82 acre Kings Farm was purchased by East Dorset District Council in 1984. Work began to develop a 9-hole pay and play golf course, the narrow-gauge steam railway, play area, lake and Visitor Centre. This first phase of Moors Valley was officially opened in 1988.The park was much more popular than had originally been envisaged and was bursting at the seams with the half a million visitors by 1990. An additional 170 acres were purchased to allow for expansion of the golf course and a second lake to be built, the Visitor Centre was extended to make way for a Country Shop and new toilets. At the same time the Tree Top Trail and Play Trail were constructed in the forest. Over the following ten years the parks popularity grew still further with approximately 750,000 visitors each year, making it one of the most popular parks in the south of England.


Snowtrax Skiing & Snowboarding
Not only is it the widest in the land and usable throughout the summer months because of its unique mist-lubricated surface, it also boasts one of the prettiest settings. Overlooking its own miniature lake and island, the view beyond disappears into a vista of pine trees as far as the eye can see.


Compton Acres
Compton Acres invites you to escape to a different world. The new Compton Acres has more features than ever before.Compton Acres was built in 1929 and is a wonderful example of a historic garden in the UK. It is of late Victorian Mixed Style design with seven distinct gardens to wander around and enjoy, including the Italian Garden and the Japanese Garden.


Farmer Palmer
Farmer Palmers is a great value, award winning visitor attraction that give you a full day out!Situated 5 miles from Poole, we are designed for locals and vistors with children 8yrs and under


Highcliffe Castle
The Castle was built on the site previously occupied by High Cliff, a Georgian mansion designed for the 3rd Earl of Bute (a founder of Kew Gardens), with grounds laid out by Capability Brown. The Earl’s fourth son, General Sir Charles Stuart who sold the estate apart from Bure Homage, a small house on its outskirts, inherited High Cliff. All that remains of High Cliff today are the two entrance lodges, presently being used as a restaurant and some of the garden walls and features on the present estate.


Kingston Lacy
Kingston Lacy has been the family seat of the Bankes since 1663.In 1634, Sir John Bankes, Attorney-General to King Charles I, bought Corfe Castle. A year later, he bought the Kingston Lacy estate.The Bankes family lost Corfe Castle in dramatic fashion during the English Civil War when ‘Brave Dame Mary’ defended it against two Parliamentarian sieges. Kingston Lacy was their home for the next 330 years.Elegant country mansion with important collections, set in attractive formal gardens and extensive parkland.


The BIC and the Pavilion
Bournemouth has always enjoyed the highest reputation as a premier conference, leisure and hospitality destination.Now even bigger and better than ever the Bournemouth International Centre and Pavilion Theatre has more flexibility for everything from large rock and pop concerts to multi-hall conferences and smaller more intimate meetings to exhibitions, opera, ballet and comedy performance.