Dorset is one of the best areas in the UK for stargazing, with clear night skies and little light pollution. A lot of the guests we welcome tell love these fantastic locations for stargazing and viewing the clear night skies on the Dorset coast. With the milkyway visible on clear nights from March to October, what could be more perfect than sitting outside your accommodation viewing the amazing night sky?
Here is a little guide for visitors to our Dorset holiday parks to make the most of these beautiful starry skies. The images below were taken in the local area on the Dorset coast by James Loveridge Photography.
It is important to pick the right place to view the stars from, away from light sources and obstacles.
Try the decking or area outside your accommodation, the fields surrounding the parks or venture to the beaches and clifftops. Seatown Beach, Eype Beach and Hive Beach, close to our holiday parks are all great locations and some of our favourites, alongside Durdle Door and St Catherine’s Chapel in Abbotsbury.
The only equipment you need as beginners is your eyes. For more advanced stargazing try binoculars or a telescope. There are a variety of phone and tablet applications that give you a map of the sky and tell you where to look and what to look for. Try to go out in pairs with torches or let someone know where you are going and when you expect to return.
Our eyes are used to looking at computer screens and bright lights. Once you have picked your spot, allow your eyes 20 minutes or so to adjust to the darkness.
The number of stars you will be able to pick out will increase dramatically. If you are using a phone or tablet, turn the screen brightness down as low as it will go.
Remember to take a blanket with you and warm clothing. Position your body so that you can view the sky at ease, either with a camping chair or by lying on your blanket on the ground. Be patient – good things take time!
Start by learning one of the constellations and the pattern it makes. Then build outwards, noticing and learning new shapes and new stars.
There’s nothing like sharing an interest with others and stargazing is a great hobby to enjoy with friends and family and an exciting activity for children!
Download our 2020 Price List and Brochure to find out everything you need to know about holidays in Dorset, our accommodation, facilities and prices.
Each of our Parks have unique features and different locations, so you are bound to find your perfect holiday
We have a great range of accommodation from luxury lodges and pitches for motorhomes to safari tents and caravans
Each Park has a range of facilities, whether you want to be at the heart of the action or somewhere peaceful and quiet
Owned by the Cox Family, West Dorset Leisure Holidays have been providing memorable family holidays for nearly 50 years!
Each of the parks are highly rated by our guests and have achieved various awards including Tripadvisor Certificates of Excellence
Explore the incredible and unique UNESCO World Heritage Jurassic Coast, ranking it alongside the Grand Canyon and Great Barrier Reef
The wildlife is stunning, we were visited by the ducks on a regular basis which was lovely. Our visit was very enjoyable and we will definitely be back in the future!
Sarah W - Pitch Up
This is simply our favorite touring park along the south coast. The location couldn't be better with views to die for and an abundance of fresh sea air. The park is spic and span and extremely well kept with very friendly staff.
Big Caravan Adventures - Tripadvisor
This is by far the best Holiday Park I have been to. The views are breath taking with easy access to the beach and nice coastal walks to West Bay. If you're looking for a relaxing holiday in a stunning location, then this is the place to come.
Alison D - TripAdvisor
We have been coming here now every year for about 10 years. Its our favourite place and the Park has everything we need.
Andy M - TripAdvisor
Golden Cap is a little bit of heaven. The views are awesome, right next to the sea. It's all relaxed and low key just how we like it.
Esther Woodhouse - Facebook
Quiet site in a beautiful setting with exceptionally clean toilets and showers
Anthony M - Pitch Up
Close to beach, a nice local pub, dog friendly and a very relaxed atmosphere.
Dan M - Pitch Up
An excellent Park as a base to visit the Dorset coast, Jurassic Coast, Chesil Beach, Lyme Regis, Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door, to name a few.
Arthur D - Tripadvisor
10 out of 10 is not enough for this Holiday Park. We have been here 3 times and we love it more and more every time. The park has all you need, with some pitches overlooking the sea and a great restaurant.
Shirley Thompson - Tripadvisor
The location is amazing, right on the beach and all the facilities are good. It's a hidden gem this one, one of the best parks in the country
Mark Tee - Tripadvisor
The location was great as we could easily walk to the village or local beaches through the beautiful countryside. I would recommend this campsite to families for a peaceful and safe stay.
Sarah - Tripadvisor