Wareham : JustWeymouth

Wareham Holiday Guide

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Wareham - Visit Wareham

Visit Wareham

Wareham is an historic and pretty town set on the Wareham river. With its beautiful Quay, pubs and shops, a museum, coffee shops, Wareham boat trips and a town full of history, Wareham is a town you should certainly plan a visit to. Whether you visit Wareham just for a day or plan to stay in the town, with so much to do on your doorstep and lots of places including Swanage, Corfe and Tyneham just down the road, you won't be short of things to do.

-> Wareham Castle, the Wareham Walls and history
-> Wareham Boat Trips and Wareham Quay
-> Wareham pubs, the market and Wareham shops
-> Things to do in Wareham
-> Places to visit near Wareham
-> Wareham accomodation
-> Getting to Wareham

The Wareham walls and Wareham Castle

Wareham is an ancient walled town along the coast from Weymouth. An important town due to its location on the River Frome. Wareham is enclosed on 3 sides by the Wareham walls - ancient walls made from earth, built by Alfred the Great in the 9th century to protect the important town from Viking invaders. On part of this site was Wareham castle, now all that remains are the huge anglo saxon earthworks and the foundations of part of the castle. After seeing centuries of warfare including protecting the town from Vikings and involvement in civil wars, Wareham castle and the town was captured by the Parliamentarians. What remains of Wareham castle is now listed as an ancient monument. The wareham walls were built for defense but part of the Western wall has a rather more gruesome link, known as the bloody bank due to it being the site of town executions. Judge Jeffreys infamous bloody asizes saw participants of the Monmouth rebellion hung, drawn and quartered on this site, while many centuries earlier, a hermit called Peter de Pomfret and his son were reputedly brutally dragged by horse to this site and hung on Bloody bank for falsely prophesising the demise of King Johns reign. Standing atop the walls, its clear that this highly fortified town would have been extremely difficult to penetrate, with the Walls surrounding 3 sides of the town, the river covering the 4th and Wareham castle, the town was extremely well defended. As much of the land around Wareham is marshland and therefore much unchanged since all those centuries ago when they were first constructed, its not hard to imagine back in days, long ago to the time of Alfred the great, standing on top of the walls and keeping watch for invaders. Today, the Wareham walls still surround the town, why not follow the Wareham walls walk around the town and see one of the last remaining Anglo-Saxon walled towns of Britain.

Wareham Quay and Wareham boat trips

Wareham Quay has to be one of the most beautiful places in all of Dorset, with picnic spots and a number of pubs around the quay, its ideal for a spot of lunch, a drink, a picnic or even sunbathing. Wareham river cruises operate from Wareham Quay giving you the opportunity to see this beautiful part of Dorset on a number of Wareham river boat trips. Paddle-boarding is a popular pastime on this part of the Wareham river. The banks of the Wareham river (the river Frome) are a haven for wildlife from birds to grass snakes, the closeby Arne nature reserve is another possibility if you want to see more nature.

Wareham Pubs, shops and the Wareham market

There are a number of Wareham pubs to enjoy a cold refreshing drink around the town, a number of them are on Wareham Quay and some offer live entertainment. For shopping, Wareham shops can be found around the main crossroads in the town where a number of eateries and coffee shops can also be found. Wareham market takes place once a week usually on Saturdays - Wareham market is set up on the lovely Wareham Quay.

Things to do in Wareham

Being only a short drive from Dorchester, Wareham is a great option if you are looking for a day out in Dorset, there is certainly more than enough to do. Walking along the ancient walls where Wareham castle once stood or strolling on the beautiful Wareham river walks, a river cruise or some live entertainment and a pub lunch on Wareham Quay, there are plenty of things to be done. There are plenty of places to eat around Wareham, as already mentioned, the beautiful quayside is where a number of Wareham pubs can be found as well as in the town and there is plenty to do whether you plan to spend the day here or simply take a quick look before making your way to the nearby Poole, Swanage, or Corfe Castle. On certain days you will also find Tyneham Village open and not to be missed. Wareham history is on show throughout the town and Wareham museum documents much of it, there is plenty of nature on show around the river Frome and the marshes and beautiful photogenic walks around Wareham to be enjoyed.

Places to visit near Wareham

Nearby is Swanage with its beach and the popular Swanage steam train railway, with parks, a beautiful seafront overlooking Swanage Bay and pier, Swanage is on your doorstep if you are staying in Wareham for your holiday. The village of Corfe is also on your doorstep with its historic Corfe Castle, slighted by parliamentarian forces in the civil war and remaining as a ruin ever since. Corfe Castle is now under the guardian of the National Trust, as is Kingston Lacy which was also owned by the Bankes family of Corfe castle. The large town of Poole is close by with Brownsea Island just a short boat trip from Poole harbour. Poole Quay with its pubs and the large amounts of shops are in the town. Also closeby is one of the most beautiful ghost villages in England, set in the Tyneham valley, the village was requisitioned by the army in 1943. Tyneham Village has fallen to ruin now and has been in the hands of the MOD ever since. Tyneham Village, its walks and the nearby Worbarrow bay are open to the public on selected days throughout the year, the Tyneham valley really is a wonderful place to visit.

Wareham accomodation

There is plenty of choice if you are looking to stay in the town, there are a number of Wareham hotels in and around the town. Caravan sites around Wareham and self catering Wareham holiday cottages both in the town and the surrounding areas provide plenty of choice.

Getting to Wareham and parking

Wareham has a large pay and display carpark just outside the Wareham walls as you come into the town, there is also Wareham parking both paid and free parking spots around the town. If you are planning to get to Wareham by train or bus, it is well served by these too. Estimated distances by road: Swanage to Wareham: 10 Mile, Bournemouth to Wareham: 15 mile, Weymouth to Wareham: 20 mile.