Things to see & do

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Three walkers in the Purbeck Hills, Dorset

Three walkers in the Purbeck Hills, Dorset

Miles of footpaths including The Purbeck Way and part of the South West Coast Path make Purbeck a paradise for walkers.


 © National Trust/Neil Davidson

Dorset mountain bikers have described Purbeck as 'God's playground' for its spectacular upland bridleways and challenging technical descents.


Cyclists on a bridleway on Godlingston Heath in Purbeck, Dorset © National Trust/Neil Davidson

You don't need to be an adrenalin junkie though – there are some great family routes taking you away from the traffic and into the heart of the countryside.

Go geocaching

Find hidden treasures on a high tech hunt. We've hidden more than 20 caches on beaches, hills and heaths in Purbeck. You can borrow a GPS unit from the Knoll Beach office, Studland.

Watch birds on Middlebere Heath

Avocet, Brownsea Island © National Trust

Avocet, Brownsea Island

Hides on the heathland and overlooking Poole Harbour get bird watchers up close with large flocks of avocets and Brent geese during winter, as well as stonechats and meadow pipits. If you are really lucky you may see a hobby performing its spectacular aerobatics, a majestic hen harrier, or even a migrating osprey in spring or autumn.

Spot reptiles on Godlingston Heath

A common lizard basks on a fence © National Trust/Cliff Henry

A common lizard basks on a fence

All six native British reptile species make their homes in Purbeck. If you are quiet and patient enough you may glimpse a sand lizard, common lizard, grass snake, adder, slow worm or even the rare smooth snake. The best time is soon after they emerge from hibernation in the spring, while they are still sluggish and relatively slow moving. Keep a sharp eye out in sheltered sunny spots.

50 things to do in Purbeck

’50 Things’ © National Trust/Cliff Henry

’50 Things’

Pick blackberries in the wild, eat an apple straight from the tree or play conkers - Purbeck is packed with opportunities to tick adventures off your 50 things list this autumn.Explore inside a cave on the south Purbeck coast, fly a kit at Ballard Down or explore inside a tree in Langton West Wood.