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Chester’s guidebook

Chester

Chester’s guidebook

Sightseeing
Portland : Unexpected approach, as you enter an industrial estate looking for the car park you wonder if you have taken a wrong turn. Once on foot you will start to discover all sorts of stone sculptures and once you have your "eye in" they are every where - great for kids to discover art. If you walk to the cliffs you will also get some amazing views of the coast and Chesil Beach. Time : Between 30 mins and an Hour
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Tout Quarry Sculpture Park & Nature Reserve
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Portland : Unexpected approach, as you enter an industrial estate looking for the car park you wonder if you have taken a wrong turn. Once on foot you will start to discover all sorts of stone sculptures and once you have your "eye in" they are every where - great for kids to discover art. If you walk to the cliffs you will also get some amazing views of the coast and Chesil Beach. Time : Between 30 mins and an Hour
Portland : Portland Bill Lighthouse you can go into the light house and have a guided tour with some amazing views from the top. Surrounding the light house there are many cliffs and rock pools to explore and dramatic seas in storms or strong tides. Not a place to go swimming.
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Portland Bill Lighthouse
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Portland : Portland Bill Lighthouse you can go into the light house and have a guided tour with some amazing views from the top. Surrounding the light house there are many cliffs and rock pools to explore and dramatic seas in storms or strong tides. Not a place to go swimming.
Portland : Rufus Castle is little more than a few stone walls now but walk past and you will find the hidden bay which is perfect to spend a sunny afternoon.
Rufus Castle
Portland : Rufus Castle is little more than a few stone walls now but walk past and you will find the hidden bay which is perfect to spend a sunny afternoon.
Food scene
Places that I often go too or think are worth a visit, often off the beaten track or not the normal recommended places, where the locals might go … a little local knowledge !!
Often driven past as your depart or access the ferry, this is a place to go if you are in the "know", evening are best with amazing sunsets over Poole Harbour and G&T in hand.
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Shell Bay Seafood Restaurant
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Often driven past as your depart or access the ferry, this is a place to go if you are in the "know", evening are best with amazing sunsets over Poole Harbour and G&T in hand.
Portland : The Cove House Inn is hidden away and often missed by visitors, food is good home cooked style and perfect stop off on a summers day or in a autumn storm, located on the bridge of the beach it is an excellent place to watch the sunset (or storm), there is also good fishing and you often see divers and snorkelers exploring the cove in calm water !! You can also walk along the beach to the foot of cliffs and along the each of the fore shore on Portland.
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The Cove House Inn
91 Chiswell
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Portland : The Cove House Inn is hidden away and often missed by visitors, food is good home cooked style and perfect stop off on a summers day or in a autumn storm, located on the bridge of the beach it is an excellent place to watch the sunset (or storm), there is also good fishing and you often see divers and snorkelers exploring the cove in calm water !! You can also walk along the beach to the foot of cliffs and along the each of the fore shore on Portland.
This beautiful 16th century former coaching inn is an iconic building located in the heart of Cerne Abbas, one of the prettiest villages in England. Recognition in the major guide books has come and The Good Pub Guide awarded us County Dining Pub of the Year. The village is within easy reach of Weymouth, Bridport and Shaftsbury. It is also the perfect stop-off point for those coming to or from Devon and Cornwall. Journey-time by car from London is approximately 2½ hours and there is a good train service to both the aforementioned county towns where taxi transfers can be arranged. We have always had an excellent meal at the New Inn and loverly post-meal to go for a walk around the village and monestry.
The New Inn
14 Long Street
This beautiful 16th century former coaching inn is an iconic building located in the heart of Cerne Abbas, one of the prettiest villages in England. Recognition in the major guide books has come and The Good Pub Guide awarded us County Dining Pub of the Year. The village is within easy reach of Weymouth, Bridport and Shaftsbury. It is also the perfect stop-off point for those coming to or from Devon and Cornwall. Journey-time by car from London is approximately 2½ hours and there is a good train service to both the aforementioned county towns where taxi transfers can be arranged. We have always had an excellent meal at the New Inn and loverly post-meal to go for a walk around the village and monestry.
Neighborhoods
Portland, most would admit, is a bit like marmite, you either love it or hate it, it is one big stone quarry supplying jutting out into the English Channel. But it has a rich history, many of London's landmark buildings (including St Pauls Cathedral) are made from stone quarried from Portland, formally an important Navel base and still with an active torpedo and missile testing station, there are still many active military activities on the island. The scenery is spectacular and there is a circular path around the island, with dramatic cliffs and far reaching sea views as well as an abundance of nature although because of the exposed location not many trees and those you do find will appear to have a side parting as the windy conditions. At the Bill where the lighthouse (there are actually three lighthouses) is located the seas meet and you can often see the "Race" where 7 tides meet and the seas bubble and race against each other forming large waves even on a calm day, swimming is not recommended any where along the bill with 7 knot tides you will soon be speaking French !! The Lighthouse is now open for visitors and is worth a visit, fishing is good off the rocks and exploring along the coast is fun. Portlanders have a myth …. do not mention the word "Rabbit" which are in abundance amongst the discarded quarried stone, it is considered bad luck and some take it very seriously !! Because of the location, lots of rare and interesting migrating birds, who stop off at Portland for a rest. The middle lighthouse is now a Bird Observatory and accepts visitors. Portland Bill on a stormy day is a dramatic place and not for the faint hearted. A fully grown man can find it difficult to stand when blowing a gale and to see the spray for the waves travel 100 to 200 ft high and the waves pounding against the rocks is a amazing sight but clearly keep well clear of the cliff edge and take extreme caution and care. If you find you are traveling back on a sunny day with the sunset looking promising, make sure your stop off at The Cove House Inn (its is listed in places to eat at) it is right on the beach and will give you amazing views of the sea and the sunset (make sure you look at the picture on the wall of the pub in a storm, you can just see the top of the roof) !!
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Portland Bill
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Portland, most would admit, is a bit like marmite, you either love it or hate it, it is one big stone quarry supplying jutting out into the English Channel. But it has a rich history, many of London's landmark buildings (including St Pauls Cathedral) are made from stone quarried from Portland, formally an important Navel base and still with an active torpedo and missile testing station, there are still many active military activities on the island. The scenery is spectacular and there is a circular path around the island, with dramatic cliffs and far reaching sea views as well as an abundance of nature although because of the exposed location not many trees and those you do find will appear to have a side parting as the windy conditions. At the Bill where the lighthouse (there are actually three lighthouses) is located the seas meet and you can often see the "Race" where 7 tides meet and the seas bubble and race against each other forming large waves even on a calm day, swimming is not recommended any where along the bill with 7 knot tides you will soon be speaking French !! The Lighthouse is now open for visitors and is worth a visit, fishing is good off the rocks and exploring along the coast is fun. Portlanders have a myth …. do not mention the word "Rabbit" which are in abundance amongst the discarded quarried stone, it is considered bad luck and some take it very seriously !! Because of the location, lots of rare and interesting migrating birds, who stop off at Portland for a rest. The middle lighthouse is now a Bird Observatory and accepts visitors. Portland Bill on a stormy day is a dramatic place and not for the faint hearted. A fully grown man can find it difficult to stand when blowing a gale and to see the spray for the waves travel 100 to 200 ft high and the waves pounding against the rocks is a amazing sight but clearly keep well clear of the cliff edge and take extreme caution and care. If you find you are traveling back on a sunny day with the sunset looking promising, make sure your stop off at The Cove House Inn (its is listed in places to eat at) it is right on the beach and will give you amazing views of the sea and the sunset (make sure you look at the picture on the wall of the pub in a storm, you can just see the top of the roof) !!
The picturesque rocky bay at Kimmeridge provides a great playground for exploring the marine world. There are hundreds of rock pools which are home to a vast array of sea creatures and vegetation. This makes it an ideal location for making new discoveries. The bay is naturally sheltered and usually has crystal clear waters making it safe for taking a dip and having a snorkel about. There is also a boat launch area so bring along any watercraft such as dingy boats and kayaks to use here. Just outside the bay the area can also benefit from some swell so surfing and bodyboarding can occasionally be enjoyed here too. If you want to stretch your legs take a stroll up the hill to the East to explore the coast path leading to Clavell Tower. From here you get a great view back down into the bay. There are toilets just by the car park and usually an ice cream van to buy a treat. Back up in the village, there is a cafe open for satisfying bigger appetites. The beach is dog-friendly throughout the year. Spectacular fossils There are fascinating fossils to be viewed at low tide in the bay. These include ammonites as well as large marine reptiles such as ichthyosaurs. However, if you make any finds do not try to forcibly extract them as fossil collecting with the use of hammers is prohibited at Kimmeridge. One of the best collections of fossils in this area can be viewed at the Etches Collection museum which is in the village of Kimmeridge. It is the result of one man’s passion for fossil collecting. Steve Etches’ mission was not just to find and collect specimens, but also to bring to life the amazing stories of the creatures that existed in the Kimmeridgian age. Car parking To access Kimmeridge Bay, toll road and car parking charges apply: Cars – £5 Cars with boat on roof – £10
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Kimmeridge
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The picturesque rocky bay at Kimmeridge provides a great playground for exploring the marine world. There are hundreds of rock pools which are home to a vast array of sea creatures and vegetation. This makes it an ideal location for making new discoveries. The bay is naturally sheltered and usually has crystal clear waters making it safe for taking a dip and having a snorkel about. There is also a boat launch area so bring along any watercraft such as dingy boats and kayaks to use here. Just outside the bay the area can also benefit from some swell so surfing and bodyboarding can occasionally be enjoyed here too. If you want to stretch your legs take a stroll up the hill to the East to explore the coast path leading to Clavell Tower. From here you get a great view back down into the bay. There are toilets just by the car park and usually an ice cream van to buy a treat. Back up in the village, there is a cafe open for satisfying bigger appetites. The beach is dog-friendly throughout the year. Spectacular fossils There are fascinating fossils to be viewed at low tide in the bay. These include ammonites as well as large marine reptiles such as ichthyosaurs. However, if you make any finds do not try to forcibly extract them as fossil collecting with the use of hammers is prohibited at Kimmeridge. One of the best collections of fossils in this area can be viewed at the Etches Collection museum which is in the village of Kimmeridge. It is the result of one man’s passion for fossil collecting. Steve Etches’ mission was not just to find and collect specimens, but also to bring to life the amazing stories of the creatures that existed in the Kimmeridgian age. Car parking To access Kimmeridge Bay, toll road and car parking charges apply: Cars – £5 Cars with boat on roof – £10
Lulworth Cove is a stunning natural cove located next to the village of West Lulworth in Purbeck. It has formed by the sea breaking through a comparatively thin layer of hard Portland Stone that runs parallel to the shoreline. It is one of the world’s finest examples of this type of formation. As such it is a very popular destination attracting up to half a million visitors each year. A large number of students visit the area on geology and geography field trips. They study the great examples of the rock and cliff formations. At Stair Hole which is just a few hundred yards from the Cove you can see fantastic views of rock layers which have been pushed up and folded by earth forces. There is a large car park at the top of a gently sloping road which leads down to the beach. Along the road there are a number of attractive shops, pubs and ice cream stalls to tempt you. There is also a very educational visitors centre which is located next to the car park. It has some brilliant displays showing how the area has altered throughout recent geological periods. Down on the beach itself, you can walk right the way around the cove and explore the rock pools which are revealed at low tide. On a sunny day the bright white pebbles and turquoise water give the beach a Mediterranean feel. The Cove is still used by working fishermen. The natural shape of Lulworth Cove provides excellent shelter for the small fishing boats which are moored here. If you have a small inflatable boat or a kayak, it is generally very safe to use in the Cove. The beach is also dog-friendly all year so your whole family can enjoy a day out here. Best to visit out of season as it get very busy during the summer holidays, on stormy days it can be specatular.
West Lulworth
Lulworth Cove is a stunning natural cove located next to the village of West Lulworth in Purbeck. It has formed by the sea breaking through a comparatively thin layer of hard Portland Stone that runs parallel to the shoreline. It is one of the world’s finest examples of this type of formation. As such it is a very popular destination attracting up to half a million visitors each year. A large number of students visit the area on geology and geography field trips. They study the great examples of the rock and cliff formations. At Stair Hole which is just a few hundred yards from the Cove you can see fantastic views of rock layers which have been pushed up and folded by earth forces. There is a large car park at the top of a gently sloping road which leads down to the beach. Along the road there are a number of attractive shops, pubs and ice cream stalls to tempt you. There is also a very educational visitors centre which is located next to the car park. It has some brilliant displays showing how the area has altered throughout recent geological periods. Down on the beach itself, you can walk right the way around the cove and explore the rock pools which are revealed at low tide. On a sunny day the bright white pebbles and turquoise water give the beach a Mediterranean feel. The Cove is still used by working fishermen. The natural shape of Lulworth Cove provides excellent shelter for the small fishing boats which are moored here. If you have a small inflatable boat or a kayak, it is generally very safe to use in the Cove. The beach is also dog-friendly all year so your whole family can enjoy a day out here. Best to visit out of season as it get very busy during the summer holidays, on stormy days it can be specatular.