Walk 2579 - printer friendly version
Purbeck Coast from Swanage Walk
Author - Reg Carr
Length - 10.0 miles / 16.3 km
Ascent - 1600 feet / 485 metres
Grade - moderate
Start - OS grid reference SZ035773
Lat 50.595416 + Long -1.9519112
Postcode BH19 2JL (approx. location only)
From Swanage harbour follow signs to Durlston Country Park (Grid ref. SZ035773). From the car park walk to Durlston Head Castle to see the Great Globe weighing 40 tons which is a testament to the mason's art. Follow the path to Tilly Whim Caves and Anvil Point Lighthouse.
Continue along the coast path, enjoying the superb views on the way to Dancing Ledge (Grid ref. SY998769), which is a good picnic spot. There was quarrying of Purbeck Stone all along this coast. At Dancing Ledge there is also a small swimming pool blasted out of the rocks. The spot is also very popular with climbers.
Continue along the coast path past quarries at Seacombe Cliff (Grid ref. SY985766) and Winspit (Grid ref. SY977761). These are also good picnic spots and great places to watch the sea crash against the cliffs on stormy days. Turn inland at Winspit on the path to Worth Matravers (Grid ref. SY975775). This was a quarrying village hence the name of the pub -'The Square and Compass'.
Take the Langton Matravers road out of the village and after about 400 metres turn right onto the path known as the 'Priest's Way'. This route gives you some good examples of Purbeck Stone quarries. Follow this to near Belle Vue Farm (Grid ref. SZ016783) then turn south on the track leading back to the coast. When you reach the steep slope down to the sea you will see a path crossing ahead (Grid ref. SZ016772). Turn left (east) onto this path which heads back across Round Down towards Anvil Point picking up the main path back to the Durlston Country Park car park.