Grand day out Weymouth A 45-minute drive from Corfe Castle, this delightful seaside town has plenty of traditional holiday activities and seafaring heritage to keep day-trippers busy
After a morning spent exploring shops and stalls, it was time for some quiet reflection on
Tavistock’s Abbey Bridge
Coffee en route
We stopped at Kimmeridge village for coffee and cake. The village is delightful but the £5 fee to park our car at the beach for a few minutes to see it was a bit wallet wilting so we decided to press on to Weymouth. Another day with more time perhaps.
Lodmore Country Park 11.15am
If you’ve got deep pockets there are plenty of attractions here to entertain the family. We popped into Sand World, and met master sand sculptor Mark Anderson. He invited master sand sculptors from around the world to create detailed works of art made entirely from sand and water. Mark says they take only 10 days to create. It’s impressive stuff and definitely worth seeing. Adult £6. Child (5-15), concession £4.50
The beach beckons
We left the car in Lodmore Country Park and walked along the seafront to the centre of town rather than take the seafront train. The beach changed from large pebbles to fine sand the further we got. Along the front, beach huts are built under the raised promenade. The beach is busy and there is plenty of traditional entertainment, including pedalos, a fortune-teller and a Punch and Judy show.
Sorting hunger pangs
A traditional seaside town calls for a traditional seaside lunch. We’d spotted a fish and chip restaurant on the walk in. King Edwards Fish and Chips on the Esplanade was a real find. Kiddies’ meals are served in a bucket with a spade, which they can keep to use on the beach – how brilliant is that? They also supply plenty of tartare sauce with your fish. 2pm
Checking out the boats
We drove around to the harbour area and walked back along the seafront to collect the car. We found a spot to park for an hour and strolled around admiring the boats and watching the bridge rise to let a yacht through. We stopped for tea at the T Shop, a charming place that got all its knitted tea cosies from the local women’s guild.
Henry’s tiny fortress 4pm fortress tiny Henry’s
Portland Castle is tiny but it served its purpose well as one of Henry VIII’s fortresses defending the south coast. Get the audio guide – it presents the history in an entertaining fashion, bringing to life what might otherwise be a slightly dull visit. We thoroughly enjoyed it.
Portland Bill 5pm
It’s worth venturing further into Portland. The villages, which are built from Portland stone, look grim from a distance but are actually charming. We came across Portland Bill lighthouse and were delighted to find there was a very colourful wedding going on.
Sprucing up for the Olympics
We stopped by the Weymouth Sailing Club just to see where all the boating action would be during the 2012 Olympics. There was plenty of TLC being applied to boats and kit. In that respect, boat owners are a bit like caravanners.
I had never seen it before and just wanted to stand on it. I was surprised how solid the shingle hill felt underfoot. It’s awesome.
www.practicalcaravan.com | NOVEMBER 2011 | 33