A long weekend in Dorset, my first trip in René!

A long weekend in Dorset

This is my first post about Dorset but I doubt it will be the last, it’s one of my favourite places in the UK. It has a fantastic coastline, the South West Coast Path, good campsites and lovely places to visit.

Dorset coastline

Dorset coastline

Preparation and Drive

One Thursday two weeks after buying René I was packing him up for a weekend trip, he was almost ready as I’d been spending on equipment for a while (kettle, cups, plates etc) and I had quite a lot of camping gear from my tent days. His renovation was in progress, see about René but not complete. Everything was packed in tightly to prevent any rattles and I finalised the important bit….food and drink!!.  I live in East Sussex and my drive was going to take me past several traffic black spots including; Worthing, Arundel and Chichester so I left work at 3pm, this clearly wasn’t early enough as I arrived at the campsite just outside Bournemouth at 8pm after a drive that should have taken 3 hours. Luckily he’s comfortable to drive.

The Campsite

I choose to stay at St Leonards Farm Caravan and Camping Park as it was close to the places I wanted to visit, not too expensive and looked great. I wasn’t disappointed. This is a great little site on a working farm, it’s just outside of Bournemouth and is easily accessible from the A31. It’s quiet,has EHU and a large clean shower block in the lower field. I was able to try out all of the camper’s equipment including the driveway awning he came with. I put up the awning and managed to reverse accurately each day when returning to the campsite.

René's pitch

René’s pitch

Waking up for the first time

Waking up for the first time

Dorset

Dorset is such a beautiful county, I stuck to the coast line because, well I love the sea! Over 3 days I visited and swam at Dancing Ledge which was wonderful but freezing (I also advise some good walking shoes to get up and down the cliff…it’s a bit of a climb). Swanage, a gorgeous little seaside town with some great galleries and shops where I bought a crab jug by Neil Tregear  in the Mulberry Tree.

Dancing Ledge

Dancing Ledge

Crab!

I also visited Studland. This is a lovely long stretch of wild looking beach with a great cafe in Purbeck, there’s sand dunes and woodland to explore and even a naturalist beach if that’s your thing. Unfortunately I was too late to take the ferry to Poole which cuts out a long drive and is a quick hop to Sandbanks which is another amazing stretch of beach.

I had breakfast at Branksome Chine and then it was time to go home…right through the New Forest.

Branksome Beach Cafe

Yummy Breakfast

Yummy Breakfast

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