Friar Waddon House

UK England South West England Dorset Dorchester

  • Campfires allowed
  • Dogs welcome
  • Beaches nearby
  • Good walks nearby
A peaceful back-to-basics camping field in the Dorset AONB, six miles from Chesil Beach

It’s no great secret that Dorset is a fantastic place for a holiday. Its Jurassic Coast is a World Heritage Site, vast swathes of its countryside are a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and its beaches and seaside towns have been immortalised in books and films for years. The only secret is knowing where to pitch your tent in this endlessly attractive county. Lean in and we’ll give you one good option: Friar Waddon House. The campsite here manages to be both in the middle of nowhere and slap-bang in the middle of the action. It’s a quiet camping field, six miles north of Chesil Beach with prime fossil-hunting spots Lyme Regis and Kimmeridge Bay equidistant east and west.

All who can fit in the spacious 10m by 10m pitches are welcome here: tents, campervans, small caravans and motorhomes. And while this type of all inclusivity is often associated with the neat rows of a holiday park, this place is more casual than that. It’s a couple of fields with 30 loosely-marked out pitches and a gravel track running through. Elisa, who runs the show, will meet you on arrival and let you choose your spot. Campfires are welcome as long as they are kept in off-ground fire pits and if you haven’t got one, you can hire one on site. Facilities are more simple than the utilitarian blocks of a holiday park too; just a couple of compost loos, hot shower cabins and an outdoor sink for washing up. Low-key and eco-friendly, some may be put off by the simplicity while others will think it part of the attraction.

The site is in a sheltered dip in the hills of the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with the fields of a working farm all around. It’s a peaceful place to hang out and you can head out on foot for bracing walks – up one side of the valley is the Jubilee Way, while up the other is the South Dorset Ridgeway, which offers a popular hiking route to Hardy’s Monument starting with a steep climb. If that’s too energetic take a trip to Upwey Wishing Well Tea Rooms and Water Gardens for a gentle meander and a Dorset cream tea or spend the day at Abbotsbury Swannery, just six miles down the road. While the countryside alone is worth travelling for, the coast is surely the main draw. The seaside town of Weymouth and unique, dramatic and historic Chesil beach are the closest choices but all of the Jurassic Coast is perfectly accessible from this central spot, in the middle of nowhere.



Onsite we provide shared eco-friendly toilet blocks, showers, fresh drinking water taps and outside sink washing facilities. This is a laidback kind of place that has plenty of space for running about and playing games, setting up barbecues for dinners or trying your hand at campfire construction.  We have firepits and barbecues available for rental, and wood, kindling and firelighters for sale and can all be dropped off directly to your pitch. It is important to note all campfires must be raised.

Suitable For

Tents, Campervans, Folding Trailer Tents, Small Caravans, Bell Tents, Gazebo and Tipi's – All allowed however MUST remain in allocated pitch size

Large Caravans and Large motorhomes – no.

We believe dogs are part of the family so they are completely welcome however, they must be under full control at all times, kept on the lead, and of course please tidy up after them (Guide Dogs are allowed on site free of charge)


While the peace and tranquillity of Friar Waddon are excellent for clearing your mind and rejuvenating your senses it also has local and diverse attractions that cater for all. Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens, Abbotsbury Swannery, Monkey World, Upwey Wishing Well (the natural spring and source of the River Wey) with tearooms and water gardens, Bovington Tank Museum and Weymouth Sealife park are only a few of Friar Waddon’s wonderful local activities. The site team will happily point you in the right direction and give local advice if needed.

Friar Waddon is sited 5 minutes away from the quaint, beautiful village of Portesham where they offer a country pub and a farm shop. We are also only a 15-minute drive away from Dorchester market town where there is a weekly farmers market, shops and restaurants. Additionally, Friar Waddon is only 10 minutes from a train station and supermarkets.

Food & Drink

There are a variety of restaurants, pubs and shops near Friar Waddon that cater for all.
We have local farm shops, traditional country pubs and restaurants that cater for everyone regardless of their dietary needs.
Here are just a few local places that you might like to visit:

The Kings Arms is a traditional country pub situated in the beautiful West Dorset village of Portesham (01305 871342)

Duck’s Farm Shop which is also in Portesham offers the highest quality Dorset produce from local farms; with meat from the Jurassic Coast and jams, condiments and chutneys from local artisan producers.

Eweleaze small organic dairy farm is just up the road in Martinstown, where they have a milk vending machine that produces pasteurised organic milk 24/7 in glass bottles, from their happy herd of cows.

We are also only a short trip away from larger supermarkets such as Tesco's in Dorchester and Lidl, M&S and Asda in Weymouth

West Bexington offers the 16th century Manor House Restaurant which looks out to the stunning views over Chesil beach (01308-897660)

There are plenty of Fish and Chip shops around Weymouth offering the finest and freshest fish

The Brewers Arms also offers local and fresh food and is only a 10 minute drive (01305 889361)


July and August only.

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The Owner Says

Friar Waddon House is located in the Dorset Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with stunning panoramic countryside and only a twenty-minute drive to the breathtaking fossil-packed Jurassic Coast. 

Friar Waddon is the perfect location to lose yourself in nature exploring miles of beautiful footpaths that have picturesque views and are rich with wildlife.  There are a vast number of beautiful local footpaths and cycling routes in particular, the Dorset Ridgeway and the famous Hardy’s Monument.

Not only is Friar Waddon only a twenty-minute drive to the stunning Jurassic Coast we are also only a short drive away from Dorset’s famous natural landmarks Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door. Weymouth Bay, Chesil beach, Puddletown Forest, Ringstead, Isle of Portland and Abbotsbury are also local places that are certainly worth exploring.


30 grassy camping pitches.

Grass Pitch

Grass pitch Sleeps 6 45 Available
Grass pitch 10m x 10m

Check Availability


Contact Friar Waddon House, Friar Waddon House, Friar Waddon Road, Weymouth, Dorset DT3 4EP

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Getting There

The best way to get into our campsite is turning off the the B3159 onto the Friar Waddon Road.
Approximately 1.5 miles up the Friar Waddon road is the campsite on the right hand side (heading west).
Look out for a large concrete track, tall trees and camping signs.
Upwey Train station is only 3.2 miles away from the campsite and Dorchester Train Station is 4.9 miles from the campsite so both easily accessible. We also have a bus stop in Portesham which is 2.5 miles away and there are plenty more bus stops in Upwey which is 2.4 miles away.


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Why book with I Love This Campsite?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
  • Instant booking confirmation
  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

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