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Dorchester Town in Dorset

Photograph of Dorchester


Dorchester is the county town of Dorset and has a current population of just over 20,000 people making it the 5th largest settlement in the county.

An historic market town, Dorchester lies on the River Frome and is probably best well known for being the home of celebrated author Thomas Hardy. His novels Tess of the d'Urbervilles and The Mayor of Casterbridge both based on the town.

The town of Dorchester dates back to prehistoric times. There was a settlement of the Durotriges Britons atop Maiden Castle in the Iron Age and the town also figured in Roman times, being known as Durnovaria. The town of Durnovaria is recorded in the 4th century Antonine Itinerary. The settlement became an important market town and a staging post covering this part of Southern Britain. Its Roman walls and a Roman town house are still visible today near County Hall.

Another historic location of interest is the Maumbury Rings, an ancient henge earthwork. The town is perfectly placed to explore the whole of Dorset as well as East Devon and South Somerset.

Tourist Information

The nearest source of local information is available from Dorchester Tourist Information Centre.

Events near Dorchester

Tue, 21 May - Thu, 13 Jun (ca. 11 km)

Matchstick Fleet Exhibition

Fri, 31 May (ca. 24 km)

Blandford Vintage Fair

Fri, 31 May (ca. 24 km)

Blandford Vintage Fair

Sat, 8 Jun (ca. 11 km)

Dirty DC the UK,s No 1 AC/ DC tribute

Sat, 8 - Sun, 09 Jun (ca. 23 km)

Netherbury Open Gardens

Wed, 12 Jun (ca. 5 km)

Living Spit's Living Quiz

Thu, 13 Jun (ca. 19 km)

Living Spit's Living Quiz

Sat, 29 Jun (ca. 8 km)

Bristol Old Vic Theatre School: The Canterbury Tales

Sun, 14 Jul (ca. 10 km)

Brass Band in the Park; Radipole Gardens Weymouth

Sat, 20 - Sun, 21 Jul (ca. 11 km)

Victorian Weekend

arrow All Dorset events

Dining out near Dorchester


Prezzo, Dorchester, Dorchester


taste*, Dorchester


Sienna, Dorchester


Hamilton's, Weymouth


Floods Bistro, Weymouth


Prezzo, Weymouth, Weymouth


Time for Tea, Weymouth

Local Accommodation


Cottage Holidays

There is a great choice of cottages for rent in the local area. Take a look at the beautiful cottages in Poundbury, Dorchester, Lulworth and Sherborne.

Holiday Parks

Holiday Parks

Stay at a nearby Holiday Park and keep the kids amused all day! Parks in the vicinity include those at:







Plenty of hotels are available locally. Consider those in the local towns:






Caravan Holidays

In the vicinity is a choice of camping and caravan sites offering high quality, affordable holiday accommodation. Consider camps in Dorchester, Weymouth, Bere Regis and Bridport.

Nearby Attractions




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Cornwall in Focus

Devon in Focus

Somerset in Focus

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