Dorset Pavillion

Things to do in Sherborne

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Dorset is home to stunning countryside, architecture, and attractions, as well as boasting the captivating Jurassic Coast.

The town of Sherborne is overflowing with interesting buildings, gardens, and trails to enjoy as a whole family. What’s even better? Sherborne is just an hour’s drive from our Rockley Park Holiday Park and 45 minutes from Littlesea, Weymouth Bay and Seaview holiday parks. So pack a lunch, pop on some comfy shoes, and start exploring things to do in Sherborne.

1. Sherborne Abbey

1. Sherborne Abbey

Address: Abbey Cl, Sherborne DT9 3LQ

You don't have to be a person of the cloth to fully appreciate just how magnificent Sherborne Abbey is. Famous for its vaulted ceiling and famous Saxon kings, the Abbey has been an integral part of the Sherborne landscape since the 1300s.  

As a family, walk around the abbey to explore its stunning architecture, statues, and peal of eight bells. You'll be pleased to know it's wheelchair accessible and open every day of the year without booking. 

You can even have your very own tour guide at no extra cost, and visit the gift shop when you're done. How's that for a history lesson?

2. Sherborne Museum

Address: Abbey Gatehouse, Church Ln, Sherborne DT9 3BP

Nestled in the heart of Sherborne town in a grade II-listed building, you'll find Sherborne Museum. It's free to enter! 

Celebrating the history of Dorset, get up close to fascinating fossils and relics, significant pieces of art, and exhibits showcasing old agriculture in the Dorset area. Find ever-changing displays in the Gardner room, many of which are created by local schools. 

Fancy something more structured to keep your young ones busy? The museum runs events and workshops to entertain the whole family. 

When you've finished studying the collections, pop to the gift shop to grab yourself a souvenir of your day.

3. Pageant Gardens

3. Pageant Gardens

Address: Station Rd, Sherborne DT9 3NQ

People have enjoyed the Pageant Gardens since 1906 when it opened to the public. When you visit, you'll see why — stunning landscape gardens with flowers, plants, and water features await! Spend a leisurely afternoon with the family strolling around the grounds. It's free entry and only a short distance from the train station. If you're coming by car, there's plenty of parking nearby.  

The paths are wide for easy navigation for pushchairs, wheelchairs, and mobility scooters. Plus, there's a bandstand—you might catch some local live entertainment if you're lucky!

4. Sherborne Steam and Waterwheel Centre

Address: 16 Oborne Rd, Sherborne DT9 3RZ

Visit the famous Steam and Waterwheel Centre to continue the historical theme when you’re after things to do in Sherborne. Did you know that until 1959, Sherborne's Victorian waterwheel supplied the town's residents with its water? The fascinating history behind this wheel's restoration, and the steam engines that helped drive it, are all found inside the centre. 

Take the kids and get right up close to old-fashioned stationary engines and plenty of other exhibits. See the steam engines come alive and watch the giant waterwheel in action on open days! Study the old Sherborne maps to discover more about how the town looked 150 years ago.  

There are some parking spots nearby and plenty of places to picnic, so bring food and make a day of it.

Discover breaks in Dorset

Rockley Park self catering holidays

Rockley Park, Dorset

3 nights from £49
Weymouth Bay self catering holidays

Weymouth Bay, Dorset

4 nights from £59
Seaview  self catering holidays

Seaview, Dorset

4 nights from £49
Littlesea self catering holiday

Littlesea, Dorset

4 nights from £49

5. Sherborne Old Castle

5. Sherborne Old Castle

Address: Castleton Rd, Sherborne DT9 3SA

It's no surprise that Sherborne's home to another grand piece of architectural history. Although crumbling, Sherborne Old Castle is still a formidable sight. Explore the ruins of the old home of Sir Walter Raleigh, where you can still clearly see remnants of each room. Today, you can still make out the well, gatehouse, and kitchen areas. There's even a moat!  

English Heritage members get in free or you just need to pay a small fee to access the ruin, with family tickets available at a discount. It's best to book in advance, but by all means, bring your dog as well; no ticket is required for your pup, of course!

6. Sherborne Town Trail

Sherborne's got a rich history and plenty of places of interest. If you fancy stretching your legs and don't want to miss the best spots in Sherborne, take the Sherborne Town Trail! 

It starts at the Almshouse of St John and is roughly 1.5 miles long. Take it at your own pace. On your journey, you'll visit the Abbey, an 18th-century sundial, merchant buildings, a market area, and the Paddock Gardens. Thankfully, it's easy to navigate with signposting along the route.  

Hungry or thirsty? Either pack your own lunch or visit one of the many family-friendly eateries along the way.

7. The Toy Barn and Blackmarsh Farm

Address: Blackmarsh Farm, Dodd's Cross, Sherborne DT9 4JX

If you’re after thrilling things to do in Sherborne that keep the kids entertained, the Toy Barn's got you covered. Owned by the Hunt family for over 100 years, they've transformed old barns and grounds into outdoor play areas that you can come and enjoy all week long. There are wooden play areas, sunken trampolines, and even pedal go-karting! 

Once a year, it's home to the Maize Maze, a massive maze with mini-puzzles to solve as you navigate your path. You'll need a ticket to gain entry to the farm but it's well worth it. There's parking available and although you'll have to leave picnics at home, the farm shop provides a hot cuppa and homemade snacks to keep you going.

Start planning your Great British break

Important information

Brand new holiday homes from £34,995

Holiday home price is for a new 3-bedroom ABI Horizon holiday home and includes siting, connections and standard accessories.   

Price excludes 2024 site fees, running costs and add-ons requested at point of sale. Subject to status and availability.   

As at 1 January 2024, price is available at all parks, excluding Cardigan View, Church Farm, Cala Gran, Far Grange, Kiln Park, Littlesea, Lydstep Beach, Penally Court, Perran Sands, Rockley Park, Seashore, Seaview, Skegness and Thornwick Bay. 

Images are shown for representational purposes. Access to holiday home is subject to park opening times.  

Park cannot be used as a permanent residence. Haven Leisure Ltd is registered in England (No. 01968698) and is a FCA appointed representative of Bourne Leisure Limited (t/a Haven).  Bourne Leisure Ltd is registered in England (No. 04011660) and is authorised and regulated by the FCA (Financial Services Register No. 312847) as a credit broker and insurance distributor. Registered office:  One Park Lane, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 4YL. We may receive commission from the finance provider if you enter into an agreement with them.  

Pre-owned holiday homes from £19,995

Holiday home price is based on a pre-owned holiday home and includes siting, connections and standard accessories.   

Price excludes 2024 site fees, running costs and add-ons requested at point of sale.  Subject to status and availability.   

As at 1 January 2024, price is available at all parks, excluding Church Farm, Cala Gran, Cardigan View, Kiln Park, Littlesea, Lydstep Beach, Penally Court, Perran Sands, Rockley Park, Riviere Sands, Seashore, Seaview and Thornwick Bay.   

Access to holiday home is subject to park opening times. Park cannot be used as a permanent residence.  

Haven Leisure Ltd is registered in England (No. 01968698) and is a FCA appointed representative of Bourne Leisure Limited (t/a Haven).  Bourne Leisure Ltd is registered in England (No. 04011660) and is authorised and regulated by the FCA (Financial Services Register No. 312847) as a credit broker and insurance distributor. Registered office:  One Park Lane, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 4YL.  We may receive commission from the finance provider if you enter into an agreement with them.  

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‘Make no site fee payments when using Let2offset until 2031’ is available at 33 Haven parks excluding Burnham, Cardigan View, Far Grange, Garreg Wen, Lydstep Beach, Riviere Sands and Seaview.  The letting income received will vary by make, model and location. The monthly site fee payment does not include running costs e.g. utilities, rates & insurance.

“Make no site fee payments when using Let2offset until 2031” is applicable to new and existing customer purchases of new Atlas Sahara 3 Bed or equivalent or superior grade holiday home purchases made through Haven where customers have also signed up to Haven’s Let2offset contract. It is not applicable to private sales and cannot be used in conjunction with our free Site Fee promotion.  It is available across 40% of eligible Parks and applies when letting a new Atlas Sahara 3 Bed holiday home (or equivalent or superior grade for 15 weeks.

An example of how “Make no site fee payments when using Let2offset until 2031” operates under Let2offset is the purchase of an Atlas Sahara 3 Bed holiday home at Primrose Valley with a monthly site fee of £585.00 (includes purchasing discount of £45) and monthly letting income of £803.67. The monthly difference equates to £218.67, which will be credited to the owner's account. Both letting income and site fees are subject to yearly pricing reviews and the monthly site fee costs and letting income shown in the example are based on 2024 figures.

Modelled assumptions on expected annual site fee and letting income charges over the 7-year lettable life of the Atlas Sahara 3 Bed indicate that under Let2offset it is anticipated that these customers will continue to receive a monthly credit during this period, however, this is not guaranteed. The modelled assumptions are based on the historical performance of Haven over the past 5 years of trading.

Images are shown for representational purposes. Access to holiday home is subject to park opening times.

Park cannot be used as a permanent residence. Haven Leisure Ltd is registered in England (No. 01968698) and is a FCA appointed representative of Bourne Leisure Limited (t/a Haven). Bourne Leisure Ltd is registered in England (No. 04011660) and is authorised and regulated by the FCA (Financial Services Register No. 312847) as a credit broker and insurance distributor. Registered office: One Park Lane, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 4YL. We may receive commission from the finance provider if you enter into an agreement with them.

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