Things to do inAbbotsbury
Visitor information for Abbotsbury in Dorset
THE magnificent sweep of the Chesil Bank and surrounding green hills provide a dramatic backdrop for Abbotsbury, a traditional and unspoilt Dorset village.
The attractive stone cottages sit comfortably in some of Dorset's best countryside and yet the village also has the advantage of being close to the World Heritage Coast.
High on a nearby hill sits St Catherine's Chapel which is dedicated to St Catherine, the patron saint of spinsters.Legend dictates that local spinsters would climb the hill and recite a poem to St Catherine to secure themselves a husband!
Abbotsbury offers something for all the family: the famous Abbotsbury Swannery is the only place in the world where visitors can walk amongst a colony of breeding swans, and during the hatching season (May to early June) you can even walk amongst the nests which are full of hatching eggs. A charming horse and cart ride and an ugly duckling trail for children complete the experience.
The mild coastal climate offers ideal conditions for Abbotsbury's Sub-tropical Gardens. Covering 20 acres this Grade 1 listed garden is famous for its camellias, rhododendrons, hydrangeas and its exotic atmosphere. A colonial Tea House sits at the heart of the garden and has a splendid verandah which overlooks a sunken garden. A plant centre offers an unusual range of plants for sale, from the exotic to the commonplace, plus many choice cuttings propagated from plants growing within the gardens.
Abbotsbury Children's Farm is home to a host of animals, many of which can be cuddled and bottle-fed. In the Smugglers' Barn children can explore the full-sized Smugglers' Lugger and a Revenue Cutter from the 1700s. Inside the wooded hulls is an extensive play environment.
To complete your day out in Abbotsbury there's the charming thatched village to explore with its lovely tearooms, cosy pubs and individual shops selling locally made crafts and produce.