A full on day today, did a lot more driving than I have been doing as I need to speed it up a bit

Weather was warm but at some of the coastal towns it was really cold and windy, it also rained a bit every now and again but nothing too bad – easy roads, again some narrow laneways

Good chats with some of the locals at Exeter, everyone so lovely here as well!


DAY 9 ITINERARY

A – MAIDEN CASTLE
B – DORCHESTER
C – POUNDBERRY
D – ABBOTSBURY
E – ABBOTSBURY CASTLE
F – WEST BAY
G – SIDMOUTH

H – EXETER


MAIDEN CASTLE

The finest iron Age fort in Britain and first laid out in 600BC over remains of neolithic settlement

In 43AD it was taken by the Roman army and the inhabitants moved to Durnovaria which is now the nearby town of Dorchester

The car park leading to the walk up to the hill fort
In the background is the sloped area of where the remains of the settlement are and I found a really random marking or word written in the corn
The settlement would have looked something like this – at one stage it has expanded to 47 acres and this allowed the people to live within the defences of the wall surrounding it
The walk was beautiful, quiet and tranquil and with birds twittering about
The first glimpse of the fort

DORCHESTER

Arrived around 11:30 and it’s so busy here! A lot and I mean a lot of elderly people with walking canes and trolleys – I really havent seen this many elderly people in one city, im curious to know why and I didnt get the chance to ask around! it’s good to see older people out and about enjoying their country, even if it’s slowly they still enjoying it 🥳 good for them!

Bustling high street and shops are full, it’s Tuesday but looks like tourists are out and about in full force

The Trafalgar way – cute little shops in a narrow alley
Holy Trinity Cathedral
such beautiful artwork inside

The Keep Dorchester

the Keep used to be the gatehouse of Marabout Barracks built in 1879-1881 and had the guard room and armory

The remains of the keep from the main road

POUNDBURY

I was so curious about this place as I was passing by to go to Abbotsbury, I just HAD to stop, it looked like a HUGE deserted town with the most amazing looking buildings so grand and huge, sort of out of place…

Poundbury map – layout has been carefully planned

Taken from their website directly – Poundbury is an urban extension to the Dorset county town of Dorchester. Poundbury is built on Duchy of Cornwall land, in accordance with the principles of architecture and urban planning as advocated by HRH The Prince of Wales in his book ‘A Vision of Britain’.

Seems like its all around sustainability, affordability & beautiful designs. The challenge for the chosen architects was to create an autonomous new extension to the town within the context of traditional Dorset architecture,

Its been done in around 4-5 phases with the first started in 1993 and different architects chosen for each phase.

Saw this from the highway and thought it was a deserted town – the photos dont do it justice these buildings are huge and exquisite!
they are newly made but made to give the old school feel, you can see some of the details on the side of the buildings which show “blocked up”windows which they used to do to older buildings to add more room or remove tax back in the hey day when they were charged by how many windows they had! they are keeping tp the old theme

ABBOTTSBURY

AONB Dorset drive through little laneways was just so amazing!
The drive through the country side rolling along with the hills

ABBOTSBURY ABBEY

English Heritage – free viewing, sits just outside of a B&B with the same name

Abbotsbury Abbey – there was a huge Benedictine Abbey here founded in 11th C. But was closed in 1539 by Henry VIII – this part seems to be the ruined end wall of what was the dining hall for the monks
The Tithe Barn – this is where the monks kept their storage or tithes or offerings which were usually paid to them in crops or produce – I was standing right next to it and it’s hugeee! Just imagine how much stuff the locals would give the monks! Yet I’m sure they were poor and barely surviving themselves

St Catherines chapel – on the hill in distance from Abbotsbury

WEST BAY

Dorset

West Bay, used to be known as Bridport Harbour, is a small harbour settlement and resort village – this are is known as the Jurassic Coast

Abbotsbury fort -> west Bay – 11mins petrol fill up at Burton Bradstock
Small pebbled beach with beautiful cliff tops and coastal walks – really cold and windy when I got here and def not beach weather! Plenty of seaside shops and cafes and museums for a small town – heaps of tourists around too
Little port area with colourful fishing boats

SIDMOUTH

Devon

Small little town with a population of around 12,500, a nice relaxed and easy feeling while walking around, nice little back alleys and the HIgh Street with all its usual shops

38min drive – mainly along the main A roads this time so it was quicker and easier on the larger road, beautiful views of the coast at some points and going through little villages along the way, main speed on highways is 50mph then once we come to the little villages it goes right down to 30mph
Little back alleys in the town centre
The water here was a bit red from the red dirt from the cliffs, this was pretty unique from what I’ve seen so far, looks beautiful with the Browns and blues

EXETER

Devon

You know when youre heading into a major city / town as the traffic backs up for a while back on the A road – reminds me why I like the countryside driving a lot more

Young crowds out and about here, a lot of kids in their 20s wandering around having fun and drinking at pubs – saw a kid get kicked out of a place for using someone else’s ID lol

6pm finally make it into town… After some Sydney style traffic back to back I’m in my little pub Accomodation finally smack bang in city centre – will explore tomorrow the beauty of this place

The most trafficy bit of the trip!

Young crowds out and about here, a lot of kids in their 20s wandering around having fun and drinking at pubs – saw a kid get kicked out of a place for using someone else’s ID lol – after I wrote this I asked a local why there were so many young people, was it a university town? to which they replied, YES most definitely, there are 5 different universities, this explains it! also, wednesday night out was student night

The White Hart – my Accomodation for the night
It’s linked to a really old and quirky pub which was so much for to explore
Every area of this pub has something cool and unique
Went walking aorund the High St a bit
Had a gin at the local wetherspoons which was right next to a church – cant beat history and its beauty