Weymouth ( 30 miles by car or train from the local station)
Weymouth offers great beaches and many other attractions, the town has seen many upgrades following selection for the 2012 Olympic sailing centre including a new road making it much quicker to get to.
Weymouth's award-winning beach retains many of the traditions associated with the British seaside family holiday, including Punch and Judy, donkey rides, a merry go round and pedaloes. Deckchairs can also be hired from several places along the beach.
Weymouth beach is also home to a more unusual attraction - sand sculptures. Fred Darrington started the Weymouth sand sculpture attraction just after the First World War in the early 1920s. When Fred finally retired in 1996, at the age of 86, his grandson Mark Anderson took over. Mark carries on what has become a family tradition, working in Weymouth during the English summer and then in various locations around the world out of season.
Throughout the year the beach is the setting for many events including the International Beach Kite Festival, firework displays, the Beach Motocross, the Beach Volleyball Championships and much, much more.
Many visitors to Weymouth are often surprised by what else the town has to offer apart from its fantastic beach. The historic harbour, restored Victorian fort, RSPB nature reserves, museums and other visitor attractions now mix harmoniously with the new town centre shopping complex, bowling alley, multiplex cinema and numerous pubs, clubs and restaurants. There is even a high-speed ferry service to the Channel Islands and St Malo for those who want a day trip experience to remember
Weymouth's Top Visitor Attractions
It is easy to get around Weymouth on foot and all the attractions are within walking distance of the town centre. Many attractions are located along the Old Harbour and there's plenty to interest the whole family.
The Deep Sea Adventure features an exhibition about the Titanic whilst Sharky's is an all action children's play zone - two attractions under the one roof.
Just off the harbourside in Hope Square are the impressive Victorian brewery buildings, which have been redeveloped into an award-winning family attraction. Brewers Quay is a labyrinth of courtyards and cobbled alleys and around every corner you will discover arts, crafts and specialist shops. The Timewalk attraction, which was inspired by Weymouth's turbulent past; Brewery Days, which explores our brewing heritage; Discovery, with a wide range of stimulating experiences plus Weymouth Museum are all worth a visit.
Just yards away from the Brewers Quay complex is the Tudor House, although this does have fairly restricted opening hours.
The Nothe Fort and gardens are also close by and the fort is yet another top family attraction. Its numerous displays, the maze of tunnels, the restored guns, plus fantastic views from the ramparts provide a memorable visit. Radipole Lake Swannery and Radipole RSPB Nature Reserve are located right in the centre of Weymouth, just a few minutes walk from the beach. The unique wildlife reserve is one of the most popular in England and many of the birds are rare or exotic visitors from overseas.
On the eastern side of the town is the Lodmoor RSPB Nature Reserve and Country Park, with the Sea Life Centre, Pirate Adventure Golf and many other indoor and outdoor attractions.