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Making the Most of the Sunshine

Friday, April 8th, 2011

What a beautiful week it’s been here in Dorchester! So much for April showers – the sun has been shining every day and we’ve seen throngs of people walking about the town in shorts and sunglasses.

The town really comes into its own when the good weather arrives, as there are so many places to go and things to do in the town on a sunny day. Here are some of our recommendations for how to make the most of the generous early helping of summer we’re currently being granted!

Maiden Castle

Arial view of Maiden Castle
Arial view of Maiden Castle

Maiden Castle is the largest Iron Age hill fort in the UK, stretching over 45 acres and sitting just 2 miles from Dorchester town centre. It’s a fantastic place to go for walks, offering a genuine sense that you are stepping back in time to Dorset’s ancient past.

We suggest you make a day of it – bring a picnic and drinks with you, and make your way leisurely up to the summit of the castle. On a clear day, once you reach the top you will be greeted with superb panoramic views of the surrounding countryside and the towns of Dorchester and Poundbury.

Thomas Hardy Trail

Hardy's Cottage
Hardy’s Cottage

Thomas Hardy was one of Britain’s greatest ever novelists. He lived most of his life in Dorchester and took much of the inspiration for his novels from the local area.

Hardy’s birthplace lies 3 miles from Dorchester in Higher Bockhampton. He was born in the house known as ‘Hardy’s Cottage’ in 1840, and also wrote Far from the Madding Crowd there. The rustic country cottage is owned by the National Trust and is open for the public to come in and view.

You can also visit Hardy’s final home, Max Gate, in which he died in 1928. The house is situated on the outskirts of Dorchester and was designed to Hardy’s own specifications.

These historic homes are a real treat for literature fans, and visiting them is a great way to spend a day!

Borough Gardens

Borough Gardens Bandstand
Borough Gardens Bandstand

The Borough Gardens are just minutes away from the town centre. It’s the perfect place to go on a sunny day, with tennis courts, a bowling green, a children’s play area, and many beautiful flower beds, and not forgetting the colourful clock tower.

So bring some sandwiches, find a shady bench and sit back and unwind in the pleasant surroundings of the gardens, while the kids run riot over in the large play area!

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