Old Harry & Ballard Down from Studland
Jurassic Coast Walk
Region - Jurassic Coast
County/Area - Dorset
Author - Lou Johnson
Length - 5.3 miles / 8.6 km Ascent - 600 feet / 182 metres
Time - 3 hours 20 minutes Grade - easy/mod
|Ordnance Survey Explorer OL15
|Anquet OS Explorer OL15
|Ordnance Survey Landranger 195
|Anquet OS Landranger 195
Walk Route Description
Click image to see photo description.
The Jurassic Coast is a popular place to walk with many outstanding coastal features. This short walk using a section of the South West Coast Path starts from the village of Studland and takes you onto the high cliffs offering some spectacular views. There is a pay and display car park in the village (grid ref. SZ037825) although do remember that at busy times of the year spaces may be at a premium.
Exit the car park and turn right along Manor Road. Where this road swings right take the signed South West Coast Path on your left. This leads you almost immediately onto the coast with views on your left across the bay to Bournemouth. The route is never in doubt as you head towards 'Old Harry', the first of the many features encountered on this walk. The path swings right and almost immediately there is a spot where you can get a wonderful view of 'Old Harry'.
Continue along the coast path gradually ascending past the 'Pinnacles' towards Ballard Point. Keep the path closest to the clifftop here ignoring the Purbeck Way which branches off to the right. From Ballard Point the views open up with Swanage Bay some 400 feet below you to the south. There is a trig point marking the highest point. Like most popular areas, there are many paths so precise directions are impossible. However after enjoying the view you need make for the Ballard Down ridge so head uphill and follow the path along the highest point. This leads west across Ballard Down and it is worth following the path as far as the Obelisk (grid ref. SZ022813) from where an extensive panorama across the Dorset countryside can be enjoyed.
Retrace your steps across the Down as far as the stone seat (grid ref. SZ033812) on Studland Hill, which you should have passed walking out to the obelisk. Turn left here following the bridleway downhill passing the Glebeland Estate on your left. Reaching Scholl Lane, go half right along Church Lane towards the church. Just after the church take the path on your right that leads back to the car park.
Other walks nearby
|Studland & Old Harry Rocks
|Purbeck Coast from Swanage
|Dancing Ledge & Durlston Head from Langton Matravers
|St Aldhelm's Head near Worth Matravers
|Houns-tout Cliff from Kingston
|Kimmeridge & Tyneham
|Swyre Head & Tyneham Cap from Kimmeridge
|Houns-tout & Swyre Head from Kimmeridge
|Egmont Point & Kimmeridge Bay from Tyneham
|Gad Cliff, Povington Hill & Tyneham
Recommended Books & eBooks
South West Coast Path Map Booklet - St Ives to Plymouth
Map of part of the southern section of the 630 mile (1014km) South West Coast Path National Trail. Covers the trail from St Ives to Plymouth along the west Cornwall and Devon coastline. This convenient and compact booklet of Ordnance Survey 1:25,000 maps shows the route, providing all of the mapping you need to walk the trail in either direction.
Walking the Jurassic Coast
This guidebook includes 30 walks on the Jurassic Coast of Devon and Dorset. Covering the coast between Exmouth and Bournemouth, these delightful routes range from 3 to 16 miles (5 to 24km), exploring and explaining the spectacular geology of this World Heritage area with clear, easily understood descriptions, cross-sections and timelines.