Monday 4th June 2012
5-6 miles approx
Toilets: Pubs and cafes in Swanage; Swanage Pier; near Peveril Point Lookout Station; Durlston Castle.
We set out in the morning from Swanage, heading south. It didn’t rain, but the skies looked a bit gloomy.
Our first stop was Swanage Pier, which was recently voted Pier of the Year, and the entrance fee was a mere 70p. There was a shop half way down it that sold seasidey stuff, but if you didn’t go in, then the pier didn’t have that typical feeling of seaside tackiness. It had two levels, and we got to go downstairs to “peer under the pier.”
We headed along the coast path via Peveril Point and its Lookout Station, after which there was more and more greenery, and the path went through some woodland.
Upon approaching Durlston Castle, we encountered a timeline of the history of the earth. It was originally owned by local man George Burt, who was interested in astrology and natural history. A refurbishment of the building was completed last year. The work and care that had gone into it was clear to see. Just down the path was the Great Globe.
We then headed back to Durlston Castle for lunch. The restaurant was very good, and we sat outside where we had a lovely view.
The next point of interest down the coast path was the Tilly Whim caves. Formed through their use as limestone quarries, they were opened by George Burt as a tourist attraction, but had to be closed in 1976 as they were too dangerous.
The furthest point along our walk was the lighthouse at Anvil Point.
We then turned back and headed through the woods towards Swanage, where the sun was slowly coming out.
The original plan for the next day was to walk from Swanage to Studland, but it was raining heavily so we took the bus. After a little explore around the drenched village, we took another bus to Bournemouth, as we’d booked our train tickets home from there. The bus went on the Sandbanks Ferry, and I’m sure it was the first time I’d been on a bus on a ferry.