10 rainy day activities in Dorset
Whilst Dorset is known for its warm and sunny weather, the great British weather can be unpredictable and rain can sometimes make an unwelcome appearance. Not to worry though, rain doesn’t have to stop play, as there are so many attractions and activities, within a short drive of our holiday parks that are perfect to visit on a wet and windy day. Here’s our top pick of rainy day activities in Dorset.
Lyme Regis Marine Aquarium, Lyme Regis
Learn about the marine life that inhabits the waters along the Jurassic Coast at Lyme Regis Marine Aquarium. Through a number of interactive displays, visitors can gain an insight into the magnificent species that are native to our waters and even handle some of the creatures, including mullet and starfish!
Portland Bill Lighthouse Visitor Centre, Portland
Take a guided tour to the top of Portland Bill lighthouse, where you will learn about this historic landmark and the ways in which helps keep passing vessels safe. Experience stormy seas for yourself, in the ‘into the dark’ interactive zone and look out at the seas that surround the rocky outcrops on Portland’s coast.
Athelhampton House and Gardens, Dorchester
Athelhampton House is a Tudor Manor House built in the 15th century. Surrounded by landscaped gardens and manicured lawns, a trip is like stepping back in time. As you walk around the magnificent grounds, including the great hall and west wing, you will see opulent furnishings and artefacts on display as well as a gallery of artist Marvena’s stunning work.
The Little Fire Station Soft Play, Bridport
Located at our very own Highlands End Holiday Park, The Little Fire Station soft play area is perfect for keeping the little ones entertained on a wet and windy day. With climbing frames, a ball pit and obstacles to climb, they can run around untill their hearts content. Adults can enjoy a tasty a delicious meal, a bite to eat or a Costa Coffee at the adjoining Martin’s Bar and Restaurant.
Stuart Wiltshire Glass, Weymouth
Participate in a glass blowing workshop at Stuart Wiltshire Glass and get to experience this unique form of craftsmanship for yourself. Create your very own masterpiece to take home as a keepsake form your time in Dorset. This unique form of craftsmanship is suitable for individuals or groups looking to try something new.
Dinosaur Museum, Dorchester
The Dinosaur Museum is Dorset’s answer to Jurassic Park, with life-size models and skeletons to discover! Little ones can participate in their very own excavation in search of fossils and bones and can experience for themselves the smell and sounds that dinosaurs make.
Palmers Brewery Tour, Bridport
Take a tour of Palmers Brewery and learn about the historic process behind some of the counties favourite beers. As you walk through the brewing buildings you will learn about each of the stages involved before commemorating your visit with a glass tankard and a spot of beer tasting!
Situated at the end of Bournemouth Pier, RockReef is an indoor activity centre offering a whole host of family fun. There are a number of adrenaline fuelled activities to combat, which cater to all ages and abilities including 28 climbing walls There is also a vertical slide, highline rocks course and indoor cave to manoeuvre if you’re brave enough!
Dorset Waterpark, Corfe
Just because it’s raining doesn’t mean you have to head indoors! Why not enjoy the wet weather by getting even wetter at Dorset Waterpark! This inflatable obstacle course is spread over two lakes close to historic Corfe Castle and offers the opportunity to bounce, slide, climb and flip to your hearts content.
The Tank Museum, Bovington
Learn about military vehicles old and new at Bovington Tank Museum. The museum boasts a collection of more than 300 vehicles and is home to the worlds first ever tank, Little Willie! Considered to be the best collection of tanks in the world, the Tank Museum offers fun for all the family, with plenty for children to do, including a trail and dressing up.
West Dorset Leisure Holidays comprises of five holiday parks all located within a stones throw of the Jurassic Coast. We have a variety of accommodation options to choose from including lodges, bell tents, pods and caravan holiday homes, to guarantee you a fantastic holiday on the south coast.
A blog from our Operations Manager
This week’s blog comes from the WDLH Operations Manager, Paul George
A little bit of trivia to start with…..
A question I have been asked many times over many years is “when you have a power cut at a holiday park, why don’t you have a generator back up”. Well I now know the answer as in July we had a major upgrade of our power supply at Highlands End and we ran the park on a generator for a day. Here it is, next to a caravan which you can only just see in the background. Yes – its big and it came on a big lorry, so not something you can keep in storage just in case we have a power cut !
All went to plan and we have now nearly doubled the power supply into Highlands which should be sufficient for at least the next 15 years. Staying with electric, we are looking at the feasibility of installing an electric car charging points on all of our parks in the next 12 months. We will start with a trial one at Highlands and then roll the programme out to the other parks. We are also looking at ways in which a car charging point can be a part of new caravans and lodge holiday homes in the future. Keep an eye on future blogs and our social media for updates on this topic.
What does the WDLH Operations Manager do in a typical day?
Sandyholme Holiday Park
As Operations Manager for all of our parks, I get to visit our stunning locations every week, and think how lucky I am to live and work along the Jurassic Coastline. Normally I would start off at Sandyholme Holiday Park, which is set in a great countryside setting and not far from the great Durdle Door and the towns of Weymouth & Dorchester.
We constantly review what the different caravan manufacturers are producing and this caught our eye recently, which we thought would be perfect for Sandyholme Holiday Park. It’s a Europa Maple 2 Bedroom Caravan and it’s the first one at WDLH. Its available now to move into and can be yours for £29,995 which includes the remainder of the 2018 Pitch Fee. It’s only been at the park for two weeks and is already attracting a lot of interest. For more information contact the Sales Team on 01308 426917. We like this caravan so much, we have also ordered one for the hire fleet at Golden Cap Holiday Park for 2019!
We have been busy drawing up plans for Sandyholme for 2019 and have just ordered a brand-new purpose-built reception building which will be ready and open by 1st March 2019, so when you drive into the park next year it will have a very different appearance.
Larkfield Holiday Park
Leaving Sandyholme my favourite drive is the coast road from Weymouth to Burton Bradstock, which has views you can look at all day long – even during winter (as long as it’s not foggy!). At the end of the drive I arrive at Larkfield Holiday Park and Jurassic Retreat, which is our new lodge holiday home ownership development, just a few minutes walk from Burton Bradstock Beach.
Jurassic Retreat is only a few months old and already our holiday lodge owners are loving it and at the end of September we are getting more stunning lodges. Keep on eye on our Holiday Homes in Dorset Facebook Page or the Jurassic Retreat website for more info. Not only do we look after our two-legged customers – we are just starting on a new area for our 4-legged customers. A new dog walking area will be open on the park by the end of the summer.
Graston Copse Holiday Park
Then a couple of miles across country, if you know the short cuts, or you may drive through the great little village of Burton Bradstock you get to Graston Copse Holiday Park. From April until September the touring and camping area is open and a few weeks ago I was asked to cover a couple of days at the park whilst our normal team were away. It was a pleasure chatting to the holidaymakers who enjoy the peace and quiet, the riverside and woodland walks and also being to walk to the village pubs alongside the River Bride!
Golden Cap Holiday Park
Bypassing Highlands End, the next stop is Golden Cap, which has just celebrated it’s 40th birthday. Last winter we introduced more Glamping at Golden Cap with two Classic Camping Pods and two Premier Camping Pods. The plan for 2019 is to have even more Glamping with another two Safari Tents as this is proving a popular choice with holidaymakers who want that little bit extra and don’t have to bring their own tents. During the winter on our closed areas of the park we will be doing more work on our park roads for our Holiday Home Owners, but at the front of the park, with the addition of two extra lodges in March this year, we now have 9 lodges available to book all year round. So, if you fancy a winter break, next to the sea, call us to check availability.
Highlands End Holiday Park
Then arriving at Highlands and looking at the great views we have towards West Bay and Eype I will have a walk around the touring area which is also the location of our new Premier Camping Pod village. Walking back up the park through our holiday home owners caravan we reach our holiday hire caravans and lodges. Last week I stayed in one of our new one-bedroom lodges and was very impressed. They are a great size for a couple, with an ample sized bedroom and a massive bathroom. If you are a regular customer staying in our bungalows, why not ask next time how much it is to upgrade to a lodge. You may be surprised how little it costs.
Martin’s Bar & Restaurant is now just over a year old and its proving very popular with not only customers using WDLH but also gets a lot of local visitors. It’s now open all day, with the outside play area, our new ‘Little Fire Station’ soft play area and all day menu. After a sneaky Costa Coffee, making sure the kitchen areas are all OK and “testing” the Orange Cheesecake with ginger and walnut, which is on our Christmas Party Menu (and yes we are taking bookings already and some dates are already full !), there is only the Leisure Club and Park Reception left to visit. We are just looking at refurbishment plans for both of these areas in 2019 and can’t wait to see the presentation that our designer is bringing to us in two weeks’ time – it’s all very exciting and may be a project that takes a couple of years to action fully.
Back in the office, although its only August, we have been working hard on all of our Winter & Development Plans and everything is now nearly all in place. Some of our works start on 1st September so as to finish fully by 1st March – we can’t wait until November to start some of the projects. With parks now open longer there are more ongoing plans rather than projects just taking place in the winter but we do try to minimize disruption for the holidaymakers and holiday home owners on the parks.
Next on the list it’s time to agree all of the details for 2019 Touring & Camping Bookings, and as of now you can book any 2019 holiday either by phone (01308 426947) or online. Or if you are staying at one of our parks, why not call into Reception and we can do it there and then. Coming in 2019 we will have some great ‘Book Before you Leave’ Offers for 2020 – yes 2020 !
And at the end of a busy day, there is just time to post a job advert for a new receptionist at Highlands to add to our existing team. WDLH employs over 100 people across our five parks, in a number of different full time, part time, seasonal and all year-round positions. We have job roles ranging from Reception Assistant and Retail Assistant & Chefs, to Lodge Cleaners & Venue Cleaners, to Park Warden Positions. If ever you fancy a change, or would like more information, drop us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org and one of the team will get back to you with any current vacancies we may have.
Enjoy the rest of the summer and we hope to welcome you to WDLH very soon, or “HELLO” if you are already here!
A blog from Golden Cap Holiday Park
A warm summer welcome to all our customers and to everyone enjoying Golden Cap Holiday Park and the West Dorset Coast. Thank you for all your support throughout the year and for taking the time to read our blog, we couldn’t do it with out you. You are the people that make it all worthwhile.
What a year it has been so far, from a cold, snow covered and and very wet start to the year at Golden Cap Holiday Park during February and March to a sun-soaked April, May June and July. Now after a little blip in the weather during late July, August has started off with a beautiful weekend again and long may it continue.
Our summer camping field Big Berries is now well and truly open and the new toilet block that opened last season is proving to be a great success, adding top quality facilities to a great value choice of holidaying on the Jurassic coast. Perhaps decide to stay on our touring field Red Hill View or try out one of our glamping options. Maybe stay in one of our hire caravans or luxury lodges, there is even the option to bring along mans best friend as some of our accommodation is dog friendly too!
Whatever you decide, whether you want to relax and just take in the stunning views, walk the many coastal paths that border the park or simply use as a base for exploring further afield, we think we have something to suit everyone.
Visit the website
Our on-park shop and reception open at 08:30 am and are serving morning pastries, delicious ice creams, hot and cold drinks and pizzas later on in the day during peak season. The shop is stocked with essentials that you may need during your stay. Why not ask the welcoming reception team about the area and some of the exciting things to do in the local area – many of our Reception Team are certified “Dorset Ambassadors!”. See the tourist information area in reception for more details and leaflets on local attractions and events.
A little bit of park news, Grant our new warden started in July and is already proving to be another great asset to the park. We then look forward to welcoming Grant’s wife Phillipa mid August.
A big effort has been made this year trying to add a splash of colour to the park especially as we celebrated the 40th anniversary of the park being owned by Vanessa and family. Celebrations were held and memories shared at Martins Bar at Highlands End Holiday Park. A great big thank you to all that attended, a lovely evening was had by all.
We are proud to now be an AA 5 pennant rated Holiday Park and we are also in TripAdvisor’s Hall of Fame, receiving their certificate of excellence 5 years running, well done to everyone for their continued support and hard work, we are so proud.
Holiday Home Sales
If you are staying on Park or interested in spending even more time here at Golden Cap, why not pop in to see our sales team and discuss the possibility of owning your very own Caravan holiday home? It might be more affordable than you think. We have some great offers on at the moment on some stunning holiday homes and pitches with glorious views of the Dorset countryside.
A few dates for the diary:
RNLI BBQ on the beach takes place on August 8th at Seatown from 4:00pm, come along its a great afternoon. Don’t miss the sea rescue display at 7:00pm!
Bridport Carnival & Torchlight Procession (18th & 19th August)
Melplash Show (23rd August)
Lyme Regis Carnival Week (4th – 13th August)
For many more wonderful days out and events in Dorset go to the Visit Dorset website
Enjoy the rest of the summer, see you soon 😎