|Dorset Travel Guide
A guide to Dorset, England, highlighting attractions, history, and visitor information.
Click on thumbnail images to see a full sized photo
Weymouth's heritage as a seaport and fishing centre is overshadowed by its 18th century renaissance as a watering-place, and its more recent revival as a popular seaside resort. Most of the finest buildings are remnants of the town's glory days as a Georgian resort, but there are even earlier houses to be found, including the converted Tudor cottages on Trinity Street.
George III lived in Weymouth, at Gloucester House (now a hotel). Reminders of the monarch are not hard to find; his likeness is cut into the turf of a hill outside the town, and a large statue stands on the busy seafront near the Tourist Information Centre.
The seafront is the hub of activity in Weymouth, a stretch of golden sand bestrewn with deckchairs and crowded with sun seekers in summer. More relaxing perhaps are the opportunities for fishing and boating in the area. Within walking distance of the town centre are two nature reserves. Radipole Lake is home to birds who love open water, reedbeds and scrubby bushes, and Lodmore offers flood meadows, rough pasture and saltmarsh habitat.
Weymouth is located between two Heritage Coasts (Purbeck and West Dorset Heritage Coast), and inland from the sea the entire surrounding region has been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The town is just north-east of the Isle of Portland, a wonderfully isolated coastal area tenuously joined to the mainland by the narrow sweep of Chesil Beach. Portland is excellent bird-watching territory, with Pulpit Rock a good spot to observe puffins during the early summer. On the north-east coast of the Isle is Portland Castle, one of the best-preserved of Henry VIII's coastal defenses.
Another, more modern defensive structure is Nothe Fort, built on a headland jutting into Portland Harbour in 1860. It was in service until 1956, and has since been transformed into a living museum, tracing the history of the fort, and in particular the role of Weymouth in the Second World War.
High speed ferries leave Weymouth harbour for the Channel Islands and St. Malo, in France.
Name the Historic attraction
British Heritage Awards
Celebrate the best of British Heritage in our annual
British History Quiz
This conflict between King John and his most powerful nobles resulted in the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215
King John's failure to live up to the terms of the Magna Carta prompted the nobles to offer the crown to Louis of France
A second conflict with the same name errupted between Simon de Montfort and Henry VI in the late 13th century
This Day in British History
30 August, 1720
Birth of Samuel Whitbread
Whitbread founded Whitbread's brewing company in 1842 and later became a politician