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Free Things To Do in Dorchester With The Kids

Thursday, August 25th, 2022

When it comes to free things to do in Dorchester that you and the kids can get involved in, there’s plenty out there! From the vast amount of play areas, landmarks, historic locations, events and other attractions, you’re bound to find something that tickles the families fancy this summer!

These attractions range from historic Roman structures such as the Roman Town House to the new (relatively speaking) Brewery Square. Not to forget the many walking hotspots such as the footpaths along the River Frome, and action packed events that frequently take place in the beautiful Borough Gardens and Maumbury Rings.

Dorchester’s Free Play Areas

Dorchester has range of excellent outdoor play areas that are sure to keep the children entertained (and burn that summer holiday energy)! In Dorchester alone there are most than you could count on two hands. Here are a handful of our favourites!

  • Borough Gardens Playground, Town Centre | DT1 1RU
  • Salisbury Field Play Area, Town Centre | DT1 1QP
  • The Great Field Super-Park, Poundbury | DT1 3RH
  • Holmead Walk Play Area, Poundbury | DT1 3GQ
  • Kings Road Play Area, Fordington | DT1 1NQ
Borough Gardens play park

The Hidden Historic Gems of Dorchester

Dorchester is rich in history with its many hidden historic gems that some of the town’s residents aren’t even aware of!

These include the Roman Town House, Maumbury Rings and additionally Maiden Castle that offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.

These landmarks go all the way back as far as the early 400’s (especially the Roman Town House) and take you on an immersive experience. These places are great for perspective into what life was like back then, and often send kid’s imaginations wild!

Roman Town House in Dorchester
The Roman Town House

 

Maumbury Rings Dorchester
The Maumbury Rings amphitheatre.

 

Maiden Castle in Dorchester
Picturesque Maiden Castle.

There’s more than enough to explore in these main historic landmarks alone for a fun, fascinating and educational family day out (especially with the info boards to better paint the picture) when done in a single day. We recommend you take a pack lunch for a picnic, as the locations feature plenty of spots where you can sit down, relax and refuel.


Walking Wonders

Get the heart rate up and the endorphins flowing with Dorchester’s many different walking excursions.

River Frome

With it’s plentiful wildlife including ducks (instead of bread, it’s not good for them, bring some seeds!), birds, insects and the connected Riverside Reserve, it makes for a great activity for a relaxing walk and light exercise.

River Frome in Dorchester

Being right on the doorstep of Hangman’s Cottage, the River Frome is easily located just a short 5 minute walk from Lloyds Bank on High West St.

Riverside Reserve

As mentioned above, the Riverside Reserve is connected to the River Frome, and is absolutely something you should check out when in the area.

The reserve features a secluded woodland walk and picnic table where you can sit down and relax whilst taking in the busy nature surrounding.

Dorchester's Riverside Reserve

Thomas Hardy’s Cottage/Puddletown Forest

When it comes to perfect picnic spots and long woodland walks, the surrounding area of Hardy’s Cottage is hard to beat.

Nested right in the heart of the serene Higher Blockhampton, the area features endless amounts of walking trails that interconnect. The area is rich in wildlife, never ending woods, ponds and is perfect for a good hike and even a bike ride.

Thomas Hardys Cottage

Please note:  Entry of the cottage itself is free for National Trust members.


An Exciting Event

This summer, a host of brilliant events have been a roaring success in Dorchester! As the school holidays start to draw to a close, there are still some events taking place to round off your fun-packed summer in Dorchester.

Anonymous Festival – 29th August 2022

The hit festival returns for its 12th year on Monday 29th August – this year to be hosted in Borough Gardens for the first time! Anonymous supports a range of young local musicians, playing live music and DJing. With an eclectic range of sounds there really is something for everyone at the festival. A range of activities will be available to enjoy, including several inflatables, bungee trampolines, & fab crafts, as well as the opportunity to handle exotic animals, or try your hand at archery! Follow Anonymous Festival on Facebook. Come on down from 11am!

anonymous festival dorchester 2022

Brewery Square

Since the fountain’s opening in April of 2013, the square’s been a hotspot for anyone living in or visiting the area. With it’s modern architecture, plentiful shops, restaurants, cafes, dray horse statue and fountain area, there’s lots to see and do.

Brewery Square fountains

You can usually find kids down at the Brewery Square fountains enjoying water-fountain fun! Head on down to relax and cool off, just remember to pack some much needed swimwear.

We hope you agree that there’s lots of free things to do in Dorchester to get stuck into during the summer season. Don’t forget to snap some pics and tag our Instagram page and use #DiscoverDorchester for a chance to get featured. We’re always intrigued to see what people are up to!

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