View of Durdle Door Cove, Portland, Dorset, UK
Discover Portland's Pirate Life

Cruise to Portland, Dorset, England

Outdoor adventurers, seafarers and wildlife watchers rejoice! Cruises to Dorset, England offer something for all these experiences and more along its wind-swept, rugged and craggy coastline. At 4 miles long and 1.5 miles wide, this small but mighty isle sits in the English Channel and is part of the Jurassic Coast, known for its important geology and landforms. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Portland Isle meets up with the English mainland through the barrier beach known as Chesil Beach — a great spot for fishing. If it's castles, lighthouses, museums, natural wonders and tales of swashbuckling pirates and a storied history you're after, you've come to the right place, matey!
National Language English
Currency Accepted Pound Sterling (GBP)

Things To Do in Portland, Dorset

Kitesurfers in Portland Harbour

Into the Wild Blue Yonder

Kitesurfers in Portland Harbour

Kitesurfers in Portland Harbour

Into the Wild Blue Yonder

A trip to Portland, England is made for water lovers. If you've always wanted to try a new water sport, take lessons from the pros at Portland's Official Test Centre. They'll teach you sailing techniques from novice to advanced levels. If sailing isn't your thing, you can also learn how to windsurf, kitesurf or even windfoil, where you ride a windsurf board with a hydrofoil attached to it.

Aerial view of Portland Bill Lighthouse

Behold Million-Dollar Views

Aerial view of Portland Bill Lighthouse

Aerial view of Portland Bill Lighthouse

Behold Million-Dollar Views

One of the best things to do when you go to Dorset, England is to take in its many million-dollar views. Head to the iconic red and white striped Portland Bill Lighthouse Visitor Centre, where 153 steps rewards you with a stunning 360-degree view of the isle. Or, stay at ground level and listen to the thunderous waves crashing against the cliff-lined shore.

Portland castle on the isle of portland wemouth dorset england uk
Portland castle on the isle of portland wemouth dorset england uk

A Cultural Treasure Trove

History buffs should add Portland Castle to their Portland, Dorset, England travel itinerary. Learn all about Henry VIII's coastal fort, which was built in the 1540s to protect against former French and Spanish aggression and later played an important role in the two world wars. And as you wander throughout Portland, note the white-gray Portland limestone, still quarried on the island at Tout Quarry.

Traditional British pub
Traditional British pub

LOCAL CUISINE

One of the best things to do in Dorset, England, includes sampling the best of local fishermen's catches. This can include sea bass, mackerel, mullet, pollack, plaice, skate or turbot, along with lobster and crab. Whether you're in the mood for typical British take-out such as fish and chips or are looking for more elevated restaurants, you can always find something from the sea — with the added bonus of a beautiful view.

Portland Bill lighthouse Painting
Portland Bill lighthouse Painting

SHOPPING

Wander down just about any high street in Portland, and you'll find original artwork made by local artists and artisans. You'll find hand-printed materials, paper, bags, jewelry, sculptures, watercolors, mixed media work and more, often featuring sweeping views of the isle. If an edible souvenir is more to your liking, look for local wildflower honeys, jams and jellies.

Insider's Tips
Insider's Tips
1 Locals say that September is the best swimming month as the surrounding waters have had all summer to "warm up."
2 The best way to get around Portland is to walk, so bring your most comfortable footwear, wear light layers in case those coastal winds kick up, and have British pounds on hand.
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