If you wanted to design the perfect family beach holiday Weymouth can’t be beaten. Weymouth beach can boast safe shallow sea, soft sand, donkey rides, pretty walks, it’s all here.
Weymouth Beach is famous for its safe shallow sea and soft sand. If you wanted to design a better family friendly seaside beach, you couldn’t. Sheltered by a sweeping curve of rolling Dorset hills, Weymouth beach sits in the sweeping arc of Georgian buildings lining the Esplanade. There are two traditional attractions on Weymouth Beach. The much loved donkeys have thrilled generations of children, precariously balanced, but feeling very special, as they trot up and down the beach all summer. Punch & Judy can still be heard arguing in their shrill voices as you walk along the Esplanade on a summer’s day. Children of all ages enjoy the sausages, the crocodile and the policeman, as they have for hundreds of years.
A pleasant walk to the north will take you past Jubilee Clock and towards Greenhill, where the sand turns to shingle at the end of the beach. From here you are able to walk to Preston, past the Sea Life Centre. Most people walk along the sea wall, and some prefer to relax on the relatively quiet shingle.
In the other direction from Weymouth beach, Nothe Forte hides the pretty little Newton’s Cove, where children love to rock-pool and a few dedicated swimmers and their dogs brave the shingle to enjoy the peace of a small cove. At the end of Stone Pier, there is a tiny shingle cove where you can paddle and then enjoy a cream tea at the Stone Pier Café, while watching the boats sailing in and out of the harbor. You might even see the lifeboat on a callout.
Follow the South West Coast Path around the Nothe and towards Portland, and you’ll come across Castle Cove beach, a small little-known cove, favoured by a few locals.
Forming a large part of the Jurassic Coast Unesco World Heritage Site and a nature reserve in its own right, Chesil Beach stretches fifteen miles from Lyme Regis, on the Devon-Dorset border, to Portland. Part of the international watersports area, the Portland end of Portland Harbour (used during London 2012 Olympic Sailing Events) forms the causeway linking Weymouth to Portland.
Here, you can watch the sports while enjoying a picnic, visit nearby seafood restaurants or, if you’re feeling really energetic, walk along Chesil Beach or The Fleets. For a truly magical view, drive along the Coast Road towards Bridport, and stop at the top of Abbotsbury Hill. At certain points you can go down onto Chesil Beach, and wonder at its ancient, unspoilt nature.