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Events and what's on in Dorset

There's never a dull moment here! With a huge choice of events in Dorset taking place throughout the year, you'll be entertained no matter when you visit.

You'll find tasty food festivals like the award-winning Nyetimber Dorset Seafood Festival, red arrows and other spectacular flying displays at the Bournemouth Air Festival, fireworks aplenty, the world-famous Great Dorset Steam Fair, music festivals such as the Wessex Folk Festival, some fantastic theatre productions, comedy shows and of course some slightly quirkier events to enjoy (Bridport Hat Festival we're looking at you!)

Dorset County Show and Melplash Show are just two of many events giving you the chance to discover rural life in Dorset.

Whatever your interests, you'll find details of what's on in Dorset on this page. Use the tabs to browse events today, this weekend, this week or next week - or just use the calendar to find out what's on when you're visiting.

Have an eventful visit!

View Dorset Events by Date:

 

The next 46 events in Dorset appear below.

16 May 2021

Dorchester, Dorset
Dorchester Outdoor Vegan MarketDorchester Vegan Market returns outdoors to the historic Maumbury Rings for this Spring! In a much safer environment and still FREE ENTRY everyone can come and enjoy this superb outdoor event with 40+ Stalls of 100% vegan products. And with a massive amphitheatre you can bring your own blankets or chairs for relaxing and dining. The spacious outdoor grass venue makes it easy to move around safely throughout the market situated at the north end of the rings. The Market will also have a ...
12 May 2021 to 16 May 2021

Dorchester, Dorset
Dorset Garden FestivalAn exhibition of indoor and outdoor sculpture by over 30 of the UK's top sculptors will be on display around the sculpture park, in The Gallery by the Lakes and The Retreat. Apart from our very own Simon Gudgeon, sculptor and founder of Sculpture by the Lakes, we have a whole host of world-famous sculptors exhibiting. Among the breath-taking works to be displayed will be pieces by globally celebrated artist Philip Jackson, known in particular for his many public commissions such as the ...
16 May 2021

Nothe Fort, Weymouth, Dorset
Remote Control Tanks at Nothe FortSouthern Armour Group are returning to Nothe Fort! And they are bringing a variety of remote controlled vehicles with them; ranging from large scale RC tanks to small military vehicles that span a multitude of eras and models. This experience is included in our regular ticket price so be sure not to miss out! 11am to 4pm.
20 May 2021

Lyme Regis, Dorset
Outdoor Concert: Scott MatthewsWe're delighted to welcome the Ivor Novello award-winning singer songwriter for a very special outdoor solo concert. Introspective and reflective, combining blues and folk, Matthews is a musical alchemist. He has expanded his sonic palette while making his new record, introducing new moods and musical textures. Having broken through with the much-loved Passing Stranger and more recently mastered the delicate art of one-man-and-a-guitar music with sparse musicianship and an otherworldly ...
21 May 2021

Sherborne, Dorset
Outdoor Cinema: The Blair Witch ProjectLeweston School is proud to open its doors to the public and host its first ever outdoor cinema event over 2 consecutive nights. We will be showcasing The Blair Witch Project (Cert 15) on Friday 21 May and The Greatest Showman (Cert PG) on Saturday 22 May. Grab your blanket and big cushions and join us in our sweeping grounds with uninterrupted views of the countryside and night sky. This is strictly a ticketed event. No walk-ins.
21 May 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
The Simon and Garfunkel Story UnpluggedThe creators of critically acclaimed ‘The Simon & Garfunkel Story’ have created a socially distanced, virus-safe ‘unplugged’ performance for Weymouth! Shadowing the same West End and International show that our seasoned festival audience know well and love, this duo show chronicles the story of two young boys from Queens, New York who went on to become the world’s most successful music duo of all time. ‘The Simon & Garfunkel Story’ is a moving and powerful concert featuring all the ...
22 May 2021

Sherborne, Dorset
Outdoor Cinema: The Greatest ShowmanLeweston School is proud to open its doors to the public and host its first ever outdoor cinema event over 2 consecutive nights. We will be showcasing The Blair Witch Project (Cert 15) on Friday 21 May and The Greatest Showman (Cert PG) on Saturday 22 May. Grab your blanket and big cushions and join us in our sweeping grounds with uninterrupted views of the countryside and night sky. This is strictly a ticketed event. No walk-ins.
21 May 2021 to 22 May 2021

Lyme Regis, Dorset
Outdoor Theatre: Oh MaryBec Applebee, well known for her work with internationally acclaimed companies Kneehigh Theatre, Golden Tree Productions, Cousin Jack’s, Dalla and the Tosta Band, now presents ‘Oh Mary!’. It's a one-woman physical theatre show based on the incredible life story of Mary Bryant; Cornish Highway Woman, Convict, Mother and Maritime Adventurer. “Mary Bryant’s story is one of incredible endurance and indomitable spirit. She is a young woman from Fowey who, as a convict is sent away to the other ...
28 May 2021

Poole, Dorset
Circus of HorrorsComing to the Poole Lighthouse for a one off evening show at 730pm. Special offer £5 if booked before April 1st 2021 Please quote Gory. The shows will be performed in covid compliant venues and consequently they will be socially distanced so therefore reduced capacity. When the Circus of Horrors started in Glastonbury '95 people thought it would run for 25 weeks let alone 25 years, yet here we are a quarter of a century later and the Circus of Horrors is still touring all over the World, ...
29 May 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
Circus of HorrorsAppearing at the Weymouth Pavilion on 29th May - Two Shows - 1st is at 4pm which is an Adams Family friendly show (suitable for all ages) And another show at 7.30pm which is the adult show and not advisable for under 16's Special offer £5 if booked before April 1st 2021 Please quote Gory. The shows will be performed in covid compliant venues and consequently they will be socially distanced so therefore reduced capacity. When the Circus of Horrors started in Glastonbury '95 people ...
28 May 2021 to 30 May 2021

Beaulieu, New Forest, Dorset
BBC Gardeners' World Spring FairBeaulieu is excited to be hosting a brand new outdoor spring gardening event, with the BBC Gardeners’ World Spring Fair, partnered by Hillier, a sign of brighter times ahead, taking place in the grounds of Palace House and the National Motor Museum from Friday 28 May to Sunday 30 May 2021. As gardening becomes increasingly popular and positively contributes to our wellbeing in this uncertain climate, the new outdoor BBC Gardeners’ World Spring Fair offers up a chance for more gardeners to ...
30 May 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
Sunday Night Comedy with Nina ContiJoin groundbreaking ventriloquist as she heads to Weymouth Pavilion and topping off an incredible night & plucking inspiration from the audience. Strap into the mask as Nina gets in your face! Nina has won a British Comedy Award, stormed Live at the Apollo, Russell Howard’s Good News, Sunday Night at the Palladium, and made a BAFTA nominated film – all without moving her lips.
30 May 2021

Weymouth, Dorset
The Bincombe BoltDo you have what it takes? The Bincombe Bolt promises to be a fun and fast event - come on your own or compete with friends. Who will be crowned the King or Queen of The Bincombe Bolt? The madcap village challenge is in aid of Breast Cancer and Cancer Research. The race is a mere 0.8 mile dash around track and fell, ending with a crazy climb of 28% to the finish line. Can you start fast and finish strong? Have you got the grit to leg it around the bumpy short course and make it ...
28 May 2021 to 31 May 2021

Lyme Regis, Dorset
Jazz JurassicaMind-blowing music. An unbeatable seaside setting. Award-wining performers. Breakthrough acts. And lots of free concerts. It’s a Bank Holiday weekend of music and fun for friends, families and visitors. This year’s festival will be truly memorable. And a safe one too. Check out the website to see what we’ll be doing to keep you safe.
01 June 2021

Poole, Dorset
Dream MachinesMotor Cycles on Poole Quay from 6pm. There will still need to be Covid measures in place which includes maintaining social distancing, so would ask that on these evenings you observe any instructions from marshals on duty, or take note of any on-site signage, regarding parking of bikes. We need to maintain the safety of all event attendees, spectators, contractors, staff and local residents.
02 June 2021

Nothe Fort, Weymouth, Dorset
This Is My Theatre Presents: Treasure IslandThis Is My Theatre are back at Nothe Fort with an brand new show! When an old sea-dog, Billy-Bones, takes refuge at The Admiral Benbow Inn, young Jim Hawkins will be drawn into the world of pirates as the search for Captain Flint's fortune begins. Joining the crew of The Hispaniola he will make friendships, face dangers and find adventure as he sets sail for Treasure Island! This swashbuckling tale will be lifted from the pages of Robert Louis Stevenson's much-loved novel and ...
05 Jun 2021 to 06 Jun 2021

New Forest, Dorset
DogstivalJoin the pack, meet hundreds of other dogs and owners whilst watching world-class dog displays; get involved with flyball, agility, scent training, hoopers ring or test your canines skills in our brand new Gundog Village with scurries, junior handler competitions and a Working Test. With behaviour experts to learn from, vet tips from ITV’s Dr Scott Miller and rosettes to win in our fun dog shows, Dogstival is the perfect weekend for anyone who loves dogs! We’ll have swimming pools for ...
22 May 2021 to 06 Jun 2021

Dorchester, Dorset
Dorset Art WeeksDorset Arts Weeks is one of the largest Open Studio events in the country. Throughout Dorset, it brings artists and visitors together in ways that are often remarkable and profoundly different from entering a public gallery. DAW is fundamentally as much about engagement between people as about people and art. At almost all venues the artists, designers or makers will be on-hand to help you engage with the work, keen to talk to you about the extraordinary range of materials, skills and ...
29 May 2021 to 06 Jun 2021

Tank Museum, Wareham, Dorset
May Half Term at The Tank Museum This May Half Term explore the Tank Museum and experience the biggest day out in history! Visit Dorset’s largest indoor attraction, housing over 300 tanks in 10 powerful exhibitions, including WW2: War Stories, opening this spring. With live explosions and expert commentaries, see the ground shake and learn how tanks have evolved during the entertaining Tanks in Action Displays. Get in the arena yourself in our brand new mini tanks. With free trails, kids’ activities, and outdoor ...
04 Jun 2021 to 06 Jun 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
Rapunzel - Christmas Pantomime ContinuedWe plan to pick up where we left off at the end of December and carry on with our pantomime in June. Who’d have thought… Christmas Panto in the summer… As Rapunzel nears her 18th Birthday the evil witch, Gothel, and her scheming wizardly brother, Alphonso are plotting to kidnap her. They plan to lock Rapunzel away in a secret tower in a bid to gain eternal youth from her magical hair. In a trance and with no memory of her real family Rapunzel is doomed to spend the rest of her ...
08 June 2021

Poole, Dorset
Dream MachinesMotor Cycles on Poole Quay from 6pm. There will still need to be Covid measures in place which includes maintaining social distancing, so would ask that on these evenings you observe any instructions from marshals on duty, or take note of any on-site signage, regarding parking of bikes. We need to maintain the safety of all event attendees, spectators, contractors, staff and local residents.
06 Jun 2021 to 09 Jun 2021

Dorchester, Dorset
Thomas Hardy Victorian FairThe focus of this year’s event will be a special online production celebrating Thomas Hardy’s love for his home town. There will be some live events happening on the day, including a Victorian food market and a live performance by Tatterdemalion in Borough Gardens. Places for these free events will be ticketed and numbers restricted. Local residents can also take part in guided tours around Dorchester and there will be Victorian craft demonstrations at Shire Hall Historic Courthouse ...
15 June 2021

Poole, Dorset
Dream MachinesMotor Cycles on Poole Quay from 6pm. There will still need to be Covid measures in place which includes maintaining social distancing, so would ask that on these evenings you observe any instructions from marshals on duty, or take note of any on-site signage, regarding parking of bikes. We need to maintain the safety of all event attendees, spectators, contractors, staff and local residents.
13 Jun 2021 to 19 Jun 2021

Bridport, Dorset
Bridport Food FestivalThe week of delicious food events around the town and surrounding area will take place from Sunday 13th June 2021.
19 June 2021

Lyme Regis, Dorset
Guitars on the BeachGuitars On The Beach is the UK’s largest guitar festival at which hundreds of guitarists of all ages and abilities come together to simultaneously play together a selection of well-known songs and form Britain’s biggest band, performing on the beach in Lyme Regis in Dorset.
20 June 2021

New Forest, Dorset
Hot Rod & Custom ShowThe South’s biggest Hot Rod and Custom event features hundreds of cool, colourful, custom cars, live music and hip entertainment throughout the day! We will run Hot Rod and Custom in a covid-secure way.
20 June 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
Sunday Night Comedy with Phil WangThe star of Taskmaster, Live at the Apollo and his own Netflix stand-up special - Phil Wang returns to Weymouth to headline at the Pavilion. One of the UK’s most exciting and in-demand stand-up comedians, join Phil as he brings you a hilarious evening full of tops off a sensational line-up. “Hugely entertaining…a unique and properly funny stand-up comic” The Times
22 June 2021

Poole, Dorset
Dream MachinesMotor cycles on Poole Quay from 6pm. There will still need to be Covid measures in place which includes maintaining social distancing, so would ask that on these evenings you observe any instructions from marshals on duty, or take note of any on-site signage, regarding parking of bikes. We need to maintain the safety of all event attendees, spectators, contractors, staff and local residents.
17 May 2021 to 27 Jun 2021

Swanage, Dorset
Woodland Clan Activity TrailJoin a magical adventure through Durlston's woodland, meeting the characters from the book by Annie Herridge and Mark Page and win a prize! Supported by ACE. Visit www.thewoodlandclan.co.uk for more information. £3. Location: Durlston Country Park and National Nature Reserve, Lighthouse Rd, Swanage BH19 2JL.
29 June 2021

Poole, Dorset
Dream MachinesMotor Cycle event on Poole Quay from 6pm. There will still need to be Covid measures in place which includes maintaining social distancing, so would ask that on these evenings you observe any instructions from marshals on duty, or take note of any on-site signage, regarding parking of bikes. We need to maintain the safety of all event attendees, spectators, contractors, staff and local residents.
03 July 2021

Poole, Dorset
Harry Paye Pirate DayTis time for you landlubbers to dig out yer eye patch, earring and cutlass for Poole’s annual celebration of its favourite pirate son.
03 Jul 2021 to 04 Jul 2021

Bournemouth, Dorset
Bournemouth Pier to Pier Swim (BHF)We're back for our 30th anniversary! Take part on Saturday or Sunday and swim 1.4 miles between Bournemouth and Boscombe Piers in one of Europe's biggest charity swimming events. Your willpower has never been more important to support the lives of those living with heart and circulatory diseases. To support social distancing at the event, we have introduced start waves so we can safely guide people through the start line. You’ll be able to choose your start time as part of the ...
09 July 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
ABBA ReunionThe ABBA REUNION TRIBUTE SHOW is the creation of the Director, Producer and Choreographer of the Award Winning ABBAMANIA musical. Starring the original 'Frida' from the London West End cast! ABBA REUNION TRIBUTE SHOW gives Abba fans, old and new, the opportunity to once again get together and re-live the addictive Abba phenomena that swept the airwaves and discos during the 70’s and 80’s in a truly feel good party style tribute concert. From Waterloo to Dancing Queen, all of the hits are ...
10 Jun 2021 to 10 Jul 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
Queen RhapsodyFormed in 1971, Queen signed their first record deal in 1973, released their debut album the same year and by the Spring of 1976 had four albums in the top 20 UK charts. World domination soon followed and one of the greatest and most enduring Rock bands still resonate with audiences today, particularly after the Biopic of the late Freddie Mercury won Remi Malek an Oscar in the principle role. QUEEN RHAPSODY is the ultimate live concert experience with stunning accuracy in sound and ...
10 July 2021

Weymouth Pavilion, Weymouth, Dorset
The Music of the Northern Soul LiveThe UK’s premier live Northern Soul act, The Signatures, bring the sounds of the music that made Northern Soul. The evening sees the band with special guest Lorraine Silver whose song ‘Lost Summer Love’ was a massive Northern Soul favourite at the legendary Wigan Casino. The evening also sees support from UK vocalist Stefan Taylor. Stefan has an abundance of personality performing classic tracks such as ‘The Night’, ‘Do I Love You’, ‘Higher & Higher’ and all the other firm ...
22 Jul 2021 to 23 Jul 2021

New Forest, Dorset
Outdoor Theatre: Alice in WonderlandFollow Boxtree Productions down the rabbit hole into a strange world of caterpillars, cards and tea parties. Join Alice as she tries to navigate this curious world of curiouser creatures, but don't lose your head! We promise you a wonderful experience of original toe-tapping songs, colourful characters, costumes and hilarious comedy. With inventive staging, original songs and magical storytelling we invite audiences to enjoy Lewis Carroll’s classic tale of Alice In Wonderland, in ...
24 Jul 2021 to 25 Jul 2021

Wimborne, Dorset
Bringing families and the community together, Family Fest in Wimborne is the place to be on the first weekend of the summer holidays in 2021. Come and visit us and be part of something special; Dorset's best traders, live music from local artists, charity dog show, family and friends fun zone and more. Entry is £1 for anyone ages 6 or over. Under 5's are free. Tickets available via the website below.
29 Jul 2021 to 01 Aug 2021

Lulworth, Dorset
Camp BestivalWe're excited to announce the dates for Camp Bestival 2021 - we'll be returning to Lulworth Castle, on Dorset's stunning Jurassic Coast for more award-winning family fun from Thursday July 29th to Sunday August 1st next summer and look forward to seeing you all there! Camp Bestival 2021 tickets will go on sale later this year with a payment plan available to help spread the total cost over multiple payments.
31 Jul 2021 to 07 Aug 2021

Swanage, Dorset
Swanage CarnivalFor one week at the end of July and the beginning of August, Swanage will be radiating to the sound, fun and excitement of the annual carnival, the South Coast’s Premier event. This ‘must do’ attraction has so much to offer everyone, from the magnificent two-mile carnival procession, vibrant with dance, sound and colour, to the beat of live bands playing on the Main Stage and in the carnival marquee.
18 Aug 2021 to 19 Aug 2021

Shaftesbury, Dorset
Gillingham & Shaftesbury ShowOne of the largest agricultural shows in the south, and held on the Turnpike Showground in North Dorset, usually held on the third Wednesday in August, will this year be spread over two days to comply with social distancing if required. To manage our safe return there will be a number of changes, these include a strict capacity plan meaning that for now there will be a limited number of pre-purchased tickets with none available to purchase on the day.
27 Aug 2021 to 30 Aug 2021

Lyme Regis, Dorset
Lyme Folk WeekendLyme Folk Weekend 2020 has been cancelled but is scheduled to go ahead in 2021. We are, though, thrilled to say that all the headline acts that we had booked have agreed to return next summer, so the festival will look exactly the same as it would have done this August. The new dates are Friday August 27 to Monday August 30 2021, when we will be delighted to bring you an amazing line-up for our first four-day festival - kicking off with the brilliant Gigspanner Big Band, followed by ...
02 Sep 2021 to 05 Sep 2021

Bournemouth, Dorset
Bournemouth Air FestivalHuge free air festival with international aircraft, beach assault and air display teams. The Festival site is open daily from 10am with displays starting late morning/ early afternoon . See website for latest information.
10 Sep 2021 to 12 Sep 2021

Bournemouth, Dorset
Contender FestivalWELCOME TO CONTENDER FEST BOURNEMOUTHS' EXCITING NEW FESTIVAL GATES OPEN 10th - 11th - 12th SEPTEMBER 2021 This new Food and Fitness Festival has everything from great food vendors to an obstacle course. Craft Artisan makers, gym equipment, exercise classes, wild street food. This 3-day Bournemouth festival is a spotlight for all Contenders to shine.
11 Sep 2021 to 12 Sep 2021

Weymouth, Dorset
Nyetimber Dorset Seafood FestivalA fabulous weekend of seafood, delicious English Sparkling Wines from Nyetimber, celebrity chefs and a great atmosphere at the new location on the Weymouth Peninsula. The Nyetimber Dorset Seafood Festival brings together sparkling wine and seafood, family entertainment and a great opportunity to gain a better understanding of the superb seafood available to us just off our wonderful shores. Taste fresh seafood dishes from around 100 stalls, or simply relax with a bottle of chilled ...
17 Sep 2021 to 20 Sep 2021

Wareham, Dorset
TANKFEST 2021Don’t miss the world’s biggest display of historic moving armour – TANKFEST 2021, sponsored by World of Tanks. See tanks roar round the arena, explore Living History encampments, meet your favourite YouTube stars and historians, and discover the best collection of military vehicles.
17 Sep 2021 to 26 Sep 2021

Dorchester, Dorset
Inside Out Dorset FestivalInside Out Dorset, the biennial festival of FREE large-scale outdoor art and performance returns. Various venues across Dorset – see insideoutdorset.co.uk for details.
Dorset events and what's on

What's on by Town

Things to do in Dorset

Latest Dorset Features

The latest Dorset articles from Resort Dorset are previewed below.

18 Feb 2021
Plan your Dorset Staycation We’ve all had better years. If you’re looking for a much-needed break, look no further - here are 10 good reasons you can’t go wrong with a Dorset staycation in 2021. Dorset has lots of outside space. Whether on the coast or out in the country, there’s room to spread out and enjoy the great outdoors. Accommodation – there’s plenty of choice, and accommodation providers, from campsites and B&Bs to luxury cottages and hideaways, ... Read more...
16 Nov 2020
Shop for Dorset this Christmas Shop Dorset and it’s a win, win – not only will your gift please the recipient but by shopping locally online in these difficult times you’ll be helping our Dorset businesses. Below are just a few ideas for Christmas gifts and goodies. Cheesed off? – Well check out Delicious, the Weymouth deli that will deliver cheeses and wines to your Dorset door. Craig’s Dairy Farm Shop and Chalbury Food & Wine are open and well-stocked with tasty local ... Read more...
21 Oct 2020
Half-term Fun in Dorset So, it’s the October half term and you may be wondering how you’re going to keep the kids entertained in these restricted times! Well don’t worry, whether you are local resident or are staying in Dorset on a break, there’s lots to do throughout the seasons. Our Resort family has children of different ages and here are some of the things we plan to enjoy; perhaps you will too! Fossil Hunting – you may just discover the next big thing! Do be aware ... Read more...
28 Sep 2020
Halloween Events in Dorset The October half-term is now synonymous with Halloween and the themed fun that takes place. If you’re out and about in Dorset, you’ll find many a Halloween event happening, so grab your broomsticks, sharpen those fangs, and prepare to have one hell of a good time! Dorset Halloween events and activities include everything from Monster Minions to Ghost Tours and more besides. It's scary how much there is to choose from... Halloween Events Read more...
3 Jul 2020
We've missed you too Firstly, thank you for staying away during lockdown; but now, here at Resort Dorset, we can’t wait to welcome you back. If you are looking for inspiration for this year’s staycation then look no further, Dorset has it all – beautiful beaches, rolling hills, rugged coastline, stunning coastal walks, and countryside rambles – breathe in the fresh air and leave your troubles behind. Dorset is a county of beauty and tranquillity, and although you will ... Read more...

More articles available in the features section.

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