Cerne Abbas

Discover Cerne Abbas and unspoilt Hardy country

Cerne Abbas is one of Dorset’s most beautiful and historic villages, and is surrounded by gorgeous countryside. It has a general store, three very pleasant pubs, the ruins of its medieval abbey, a tithe barn, a church and houses dating from the early 16th century and, of course, its famous Cerne Giant. Consequently,  it is a gem of a place to spend a short holiday.

Cerne Abbas is located in central Dorset, easily accessible from the mainline railway stations of Dorchester and Sherborne, both a couple of hours away from central London. The surrounding countryside is wonderful walking terrain and Footscape have a selection of linear and circular walks of varying lengths to suit all requirements. Thus a stay in Cerne may either be taken as a one-centre holiday or as part of a linear inn to inn walking holiday, perhaps as part of our Undiscovered Dorset trail. Alternatively as arguably one of the most historic and picturesque in Dorset, Cerne Abbas and also provides the ideal base for a longer break taking in Thomas Hardy’s Dorchester or the beautiful town of Sherborne with its medieval abbey, two castles, public school and historic centre.

The story of Cerne Abbas is steeped in the history of Dorset. Footscape trail guides provide detailed information on the history of the local area, but for an overview of the county’s history please click here  History of Dorset

About the Walks

Each of our  trails start in the village and pass through scenic, rolling countryside. These walks may either be circular or linear, but all provide opportunities for a welcome stop for lunch, often at historic village inns with a good repuation for their food.

On one day, after a stop (if you wish) at a very pleasant village pub, you head for Minterne Magna, where, in the 17th century, the first Sir Winston Churchill lived. You will have the time to see the house (from the outside) and visit the beautiful and little known Minterne Gardens before completing the round walk back to Cerne Abbas via the Giant.

Another trail is mostly a ridge walk along an old drover’s path, with a choice of village pubs on the way. You end up in Dorchester, the Casterbridge of Thomas Hardy’s novels, with its excellent museum and other sites of interest. A local bus will bring you back to Cerne Abbas.

A third walk takes you across the Piddle valley and beyond – from one picturesque village to another – along open paths with sweeping rural views to a welcoming and excellent old pub, before joining the Wessex Ridgeway for the return to Cerne Abbas.

Another trail includes a stop at the beautiful village of Sydling St Nicholas, where again there is an excellent inn offering a friendly welcome and delicious food, before returning to an inland ridgeway offering far reaching views towards the coast.

Accommodation & Services

Your accommodation is in the heart of Cerne Abbas, either in a village inn or a B&B, both of a good standard and full of character. We will give you a holiday pack comprising our detailed Cerne Abbas Trail Guide (Footscape Trail Guide), the relevant ordnance survey map with the Footscape trail highlighted and all other information that you will need.

Rates

  Double / Twin Single
7+ nights.. from £85 from £120
4 to 6 nights from £90 from £125
2 to 3 nights from £95 from £130
Prices are per person per night and in £ Sterling

A2 – A comfortable B&B or simple village inn

A1 – A good hotel, inn or equivalent

A+ – A luxury hotel

Occasionally we may propose accommodation with a standard and price between A1 & A2.

10% discount for groups of 3 or more. For very large groups (10+), please contact us.

We can sometimes offer family rooms with special prices for children.

Please give us details on the enquiry form

Trail Highlights

  • Beautiful walks through Dorset unspoilt countryside
  • Cerne Abbas, with its Abbey ruins, medieval tithe barn and attractive streets
  • The Cerne Giant
  • Minterne Gardens
  • A series of pretty villages, each with an attractive church and pub
  • The historic county town of Dorchester, with its museums and Roman remains.

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Julie Dysch UK October 2020

We have both had a lovely trip, very tiring, but very enjoyable. We've learnt a lot about the history of the area and also reading maps and that our waterproof coats need serious up grading. Thank you for organising this adventure for us. We certainly have our...

Julian Stuhler UK September 2020 (Dog walking holiday)

Just back home after a fantastic few days, and wanted to say a big thank-you for a very well-organised trip. All of the hotel/luggage arrangements worked out perfectly and the walking instructions and other information were fantastic. We both had an amazing time, and...

Carolyn Doorbar UK September 2020 (Dog walking holiday)

Really enjoying myself. Jess {the dog] is too            ...

Anne Marie Griffiths UK August 2020

We couldn't have asked for a better holiday …The trail guide took all the stress out of things so we could just relax and enjoy the walking. We particularly appreciated the route options - especially the ridgeway route from West Bexington to Abbotsbury, which was...

Chas & Sarah Geiger UK September 2020

Thank you so much for organising our Dorset walking trip. We really appreciated your careful consideration of how much walking we wanted to do each day and how you matched that to walks and hotels along the way. The guidance you provided, including the handy-sized...