Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset

Abbotsbury Swannery

New Barn Rd, Abbotsbury DT3 4JG

01305 871858

Abbotsbury Swannery is a unique sanctuary which allows you to interact and learn about these magnificent birds

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12.1 miles from Highlands End
14.2 miles from Golden Cap
8.9 miles from Graston Copse
15.7 miles from Sandyholme

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  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset
  • Abbotsbury Swannery - Things to do in Dorset

Located in the quaint village of Abbotsbury, next to The Fleet lagoon lies Abbotsbury Swannery. Here you can walk through the largest nesting colony of mute swans in the world. The swans are free flying could choose to nest anywhere but are attracted this place. As such there are no cages and so this is a very different experience to say visiting a zoo. There are over 600 swans, which have been here for over 600 years.

Written records of the swannery’s existence go back to 1393 however it is thought that the swannery was created by Benedictine Monks who farmed the birds back in 1040s. Today the protected birds are able to live peacefully in this unique natural wildlife habitat. The Fleet, with Chesil Beach on its seaward side provides a natural barrier for the swans against the sometimes rough seas.

Visitors can wander through along the paths which weave through the nesting sites. In late spring you can get very close to the nesting pairs and may catch a glimpse of the new born cygnets. The swannery is open to the public between March and the end of October. A great time to visit is between the middle of May and the end of June when young cygnets are present. There is the opportunity to help with feeding the swans. Twice a day at noon and 4pm a mass feeding takes place.

For feeding yourselves there is a great little cafe which serves delicious homemade food. It is fully licensed and located at the entrance before you pay to go in; so passing walkers are welcome. Nearby are other great attractions including Abbotsbury Children’s Farm and Abbotsbury Sub Tropical Gardens.

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Holidays in Dorset

At West Dorset Leisure Holidays, we have a great choice of accommodation and facilities across 4 family-run holiday parks on or near the Jurassic Coast - Highlands End, Golden Cap, Graston Copse and Sandyholme, as well as Caravan and Lodge Holiday Homes for sale.

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Our Awards & Accreditations

Our parks have been recognised as some of the best in Dorset and the South West. We're extremely proud of the awards and it's easy to see why our guests return year on year. You can be safe in the knowledge that you're staying at one of the best parks in the county! Please note awards vary by Park - there is more information on the pages for each park.

dorset tourism awards gold 2021/222021 travelers choice tripadvisor awarddavid bellamy blooming marvellous pledge for nature 2022david bellamy conservation gold award 2020/21taste of the west south west england award 2022david bellmay conservation award honey bee friendly park awardgolden cap holiday park commended south westthe queens green canopy platinum jubilee logoplastic free champion surfers against sewage

What our guests say

  • The Most Magical Campsite

    We have just come back from the most magical few days staying at Highlands End. In fact, it was so good we extended our stay by a few days whilst on park. We are new to campsites and this was beyond my expectations

    Mr Scott - Tripadvisor
    Highlands End

  • Happy second visit

    Perfectly clean, ample space, lovely views, close to everything, what more could be asked for?

    Dan Pipper - Tripadvisor
    Golden Cap

  • Well maintained and quiet

    Lovely clean and tidy site. well maintained and quiet in walking distance to Hive Beach and West Bay only a couple of miles away over the coastal walk.

    Linda S - Google Reviews
    Graston Copse

  • Friendliest park on the Dorset coast

    Possibly the friendliest park on the Dorset coast. Staff are exceptional, very helpful and keep the place spotless. The views are fantastic. Showers and toilets are very modern and extremely clean.

    Mr Leck - Tripadvisor
    Highlands End

  • Fantastic

    This is a lovely quiet, friendly, well maintained site with very friendly, helpful staff who are knowledgeable about the local area and more than happy to pass on useful information to make your stay as enjoyable as possible.

    Nigel White - Tripadvisor
    Sandyholme

  • Wonderful three night stay

    Our pitch was spacious and quiet. The facilities were clean and a generous number of showers etc whatever time we needed them. A very picturesque site and plenty to do straight from the van without the need to drive

    Rachel L - Pitch Up
    Golden Cap

  • Beautiful weekend away

    This park is in a wonderful location. The local village is beautiful and only a 15 min walk along the river. The beach is then another 15 minutes along - again a beautiful walk. We were blessed with amazing weather so we spent the afternoon on Hive Beach.

    Clairey16 - Tripadvisor
    Graston Copse

  • Ideal base for exploring

    Ideal base for exploring Dorset , everywhere we wanted to visit was within easy reach . Site itself was very good, nice and quite and clean and staff very friendly.

    James S - Tripadvisor
    Sandyholme