This county is as green and pleasant as any in Britain.
DORSET - AT A GLANCE
If you want to sample a classic slice of rural England with some impressive coastline thrown in, this is your place. One of the few counties in England without a motorway, Dorset is perfect for a quiet country escape.
Find fossils on the beaches of the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site of hidden bays, sandy beaches and crumbling cliffs and drink ale in ancient inns once frequented by smugglers.
Don’t forget to visit the staggering Maiden Castle, one of the largest, most complex Iron Age hill forts in Europe.
Bordered by Devon, Somerset, Wiltshire and Hampshire it also makes an idyllic base for exploring the South West.
Nearby Wiltshire has the iconic Stonehenge while the New Forest to the east is designated as a National Park for its magical ancient woodland.
The quickest route from London is by train to the seaside town of Bournemouth, which takes around 2 hours.