Dorset's dramatic coastline and surrounding countryside is perfect for anyone who loves the great outdoors.
Picture-postcard scenery makes for an idyllic escape walking or cycling. Water sports enthusiasts will find some of the best spots in the UK for sailing and windsurfing, and if you prefer taking it easy then award-winning beaches are ideal for lazy days catching rays.
The dramatic rock formation of Durdle Door and the beautiful Lulworth Cove are absolute must sees along the World Heritage ‘Jurassic Coast' - a fascinating area that's great for fossil hunting too.
Away from the coast there are some brilliant visitor attractions to discover along with ancient market towns, fascinating hill forts, ruined castles, quaint cottages and grand stately homes where history is brought to life.
Take a look at the ideas on this page for more things to see and do in Dorset, or for detailed information and booking online go to the official Visit Dorset website.
The spectacular Jurassic Coast was named England's first natural World Heritage Site for its outstanding geology which represents 185 million years of earth history in just 95 miles.
Come and take a 'walk through time' - hunt for fossils and enjoy all the stunning natural features, exceptional views and wide range of activities on offer.
Located on the Jurassic Coast, the perfect horseshoe shaped Lulworth Cove is a real must-see. Stop by at the Heritage Centre to learn about the site's history, enjoy a guided walk, or hop on a boat trip for a different perspective of this stunning stretch of coast.
Just a 1 mile walk away is the huge limestone arch of Durdle Door jutting out into the sea - one of Dorset's most famous landmarks.
The Classic Seaside Resort of Weymouth, with its fantastic beach and vibrant harbour, nestles perfectly alongside the rugged 'Isle' of Portland, a perfect place to get away from it all. With plenty of places to eat and drink, and all year round events, attractions and activities there's something for everyone!
Weymouth will be an Olympic venue during the London 2012 Games so if you don't fancy heading to London - come to Dorset!
Explore colourful histories and beautiful buildings, browse local shops for unique gifts and indulge in some wonderful pubs.
Fine examples include Bridport - friendly and vibrant with its own thriving artistic community, and Beaminster which boasts over 200 listed buildings and stands at the head of Dorset's 'Hidden Valley' - known for its wonderful walks.
The picturesque landscape and charming villages of West Dorset are captured on the big screen this September in a new film called Tamara Drewe - based on Posy Simmonds' well-loved graphic novel, which in turn was inspired by Thomas Hardy's Far From the Madding Crowd.
Filmed on location in Yetminster, Dorchester, Salwayash and Beaminster. Director Stephen Frears described the West Dorset villages as "breathtakingly beautiful."
Dorset offers a fantastic range of places to eat out. From award-winning restaurants, traditional tearooms to cosy Dorset pubs, you can be sure to find the perfect place to tantalise your taste buds.
Local specialities are a must - Dorset apple cake, blue vinney cheese and traditional real ales are just some of the things to get your taste buds flowing.
This wonderful, contrasting landscape has been the inspiration for some of Britain's favourite writers. Thomas Hardy spent most of his life here, Jane Austen was a frequent visitor to Lyme Regis where she wrote 'Persuasion' and John Fowles set his classic novel 'The French Lieutenant's Woman' in and around the town too.
Follow the Enid Blyton trail for your own Dorset adventure! The famous children's author stayed in Purbeck regularly and some of her best known works were inspired by the area.
A huge outline sculpted into the chalk hillside above the picturesque village of Cerne Abbas represents a naked, 180ft high, sexually aroused, club-wielding giant!
Public perceptions are wide-ranging, is he smutty, humorous or offensive? The figure has conventionally been viewed as a great symbol of ancient spirituality - see it for yourself and make your own mind up.
West Dorset is the best place for budding geologists, with the pretty towns of Charmouth and Lyme Regis making excellent bases. If you're not sure where to start then why not take a guided fossil hunting walk and look for evidence of creatures of the Jurassic Seas!
There are some brilliant castles in Dorset - eerie and imposing remnants of a time when life in the England was a bit more bloody!
Try Portland Castle overlooking Portland Harbour - one of Henry VIII's finest coastal forts built in the early 1540's, or Corfe Castle, described as "one of the most evocative ruined castles in England".