Family & Dog Friendly Attractions to Visit

We know what it’s like trying to please everyone, and you want the whole family to enjoy your holiday here in Dorset.

So I am using my years of experience living here and taking an avid interest in all things dog and family friendly, to find you places that you may not find on your own, which will be fun for your children and a fantastic day out for you and your dogs.

Being a dog owner it can be restrictive at times, we all know that.  So here are my top places to go where you are sure of a great day out, and nobody gets left out.

Well behaved dogs on leads are welcome at all of the following places.

Please check websites for up to date opening times and admission charges.

Nothe Fort

Weymouth’s historic and haunted sea fort on the Jurassic Coast!  There’s loads to do for kids.  You can run around and see the big guns! Find out what it was like for kids in the war.  See how many times you can spot Warren the Mouse.  Whilst the rest of the family can wonder at the spectacular views across the Jurassic Coast


Disabled access

Council operated parking

Picnic areas

Gift shop


Address: Barrack Road



01305 766626

Castletown D-Day Centre

A very interactive WW2 visitor attraction where it’s encouraged to handle weapons, climb in vehicles and dress up in authentic uniforms.


Admiralty Buildings,





open everyday from 10.30am – 3.30pm (last entry)

Easy to find, just look for the Sherman tank!

Abbotsbury Sub-tropical Gardens

An 18th century garden with rare plants and stunning views of the Jurassic Coast.


Free parking

Restaurant with local produce (admission not necessary to use restaurant)

50% of the gardens are accessible to disabled visitors

Book tickets online to receive 20% discount


Buller’s Way


Nr Weymouth


01305 871387

Athelhampton House and Gardens

The quintessential English manor house with world famous gardens

Please note: Dogs are allowed in the visitor centre and gardens but only guide dogs are permitted in the house.

There is a £1 entry fee for dogs.



Gift shop in visitors centre

Free parking





01305 848363

Dorset Heavy Horse Farm Park

This award-winning park is not only a family attraction but also a conservation centre for rare breed heavy horses.

There are only certain areas of the park where dogs aren’t permitted.


Café (Smokey Joe’s)

Pony rides

Tractor rides

Animal feeding

Play area


Edmondsham Road


BH21 5RJ

Dinosaur Museum

Explore the enthralling world of dinosaurs in Britain’s original dinosaur museum.  It’s lots of fun and of course being near the Jurassic Coast, it’s what we’re all about in Dorset.  But we’re not all that old!


Icen Way



01305 269880

Corfe Castle Model Village

1/20th scale model of Corfe Castle and the village as it was in 1646.


Gardens and wildlife garden

Croquet lawn

A miniature village that is out of this world.

Farmer Palmers Farm Park


Wareham Road




BH16 6EU

A fantastic day out for 8 years and under.  I know, I hear you say it’s very unusual for a Farm Park to welcome dogs.  But there is a lovely ‘Dog Parking Kennels’ at the very front of Farmer Palmers where your dog can chill in very comfortable surroundings, whilst you go and see some other types of animals.  Brilliant for them as they get to people watch to their hearts content. 😉

Moors Valley Country Park


Horton Road

Ashley Heath

Dogs are welcome at Moors Valley, at some points they will need to be on the lead. There’s so much to do here such as:

Ride on the authentic Steam Railway

Hire some bikes and have a cycle following the Moor Valley Cycle Trails

You can ‘Go Ape’

Head to the Rangers Den and learn more about the creatures that live at Moors Valley

Follow the brand new Shaun the Sheep Glow Trail, based on the film ‘Farmageddon’.

Or just all have a walk and enjoy the scenery

…and lots lots more to keep you occupied, and with all the walks, the café and different events throughout the year; it’s definitely worth a visit.

Donkey Walking

Address: Donkey Walking Adventures, Beaminster, Dorset

Well you have to take the doglet/s for a walk so why not take a Donkey too!  That’s right, well behaved dogs on a lead are able to join you when you take a short trip down the road to Donkey Walking adventures.  A whole day (you can take a picnic lunch or go to the pub) spent with a Donkey enjoying the sights of West Dorset.

Contact Chris at: 01308 862045

Other Fab Attractions.

There are also some top attractions that for many reasons are not dog friendly. But don’t forget at Lancombe we do offer a dog sitting service at an additional charge.  Please see our dogs facilities page at:

Here they are:

Monkey World  the Ape Rescue Centre.  This is a top place to go when visiting the area, and even a special trip.  For all ages.

Sea Life Centre – this is in Weymouth and it is always worth booking your tickets in advance for a 30% discount.  There’s also a Pirate Crazy Golf and adventure centre and all along the seafront.

The Tank Museum in Bovington.  A must go to whether you are into tanks or not, it’s a fabulous adventure for all ages.  I have more mature guests that return to Lancombe each year to get their fill of the Tank Museum.

Haynes International Motor Museum in Sparkford in Somerset.   UK’s largest collection of the greatest cars from around the world.

The Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm Museum Near Yeovil.  You can often see the fighters in test flight over Lancombe, it is spectacular.   Wet weather activities means it’s a great day out for all the family whatever the weather.