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Looking over Corfe Castle along the Purbeck Hills
Looking over Corfe Castle along the Purbeck Hills

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Route No 263 - Tuesday 26 August 2008
Swanage to Corfe Castle - 11.5km
Purbeck Hills, Dorset . . .

Ordnance Survey route map on the Landranger series map base
View the route in Google Earth

Map: OS Explorer OL15 Purbeck & South Dorset at 1:25000


Our train pulls into Norden station
Our train pulls into Norden station

It is a huge car park and the "ride" part of the scheme is on the Swanage steam railway. We bought our tickets and joined the hordes of other people on the platform to catch the 12.30pm train. It was a very pleasant ride through the village of Corfe Castle to Swanage.

This week we are on holiday on the Dorset coast with our daughter and her family, we're the built-in baby sitting service! Today is our day off and my wife and I drove to the Norden "park & ride" car park just outside the village of Corfe Castle at map ref. SY957828.

Leaving the train at Swanage
Leaving the train at Swanage

The sea front at Swanage
The sea front at Swanage

After about 800m at map ref. SY031796 we followed the road as it turned away from the beach up a gentle rise. After about 600m we turned up a pleasant residential road for another 150m.

From the station we walked a couple of hundred metres to the sea front and there turned left to walk along the road at the edge of the beach.

Walking along the sea front at Swanage
Walking along the sea front at Swanage

Climbing up to the Purbeck Way from Swanage
Climbing up to the Purbeck Way from Swanage

Here the path met the Purbeck Way and we turned left to follow it around the hillside to a road at map ref. SY018812.

There was a path between the houses and through to the fields beyond the houses at map ref SY028805. We continued up the hillside for about 500m to map ref SY029811.

Joining the Purbeck Way above Swanage
Joining the Purbeck Way above Swanage

View over Swanage Bay from the Purbeck Way
View over Swanage Bay from the Purbeck Way

Purbeck Way heading west around the foot of Ballard Down
Purbeck Way heading west around the foot of Ballard Down

Purbeck Way at the foot of Ballard Down below the obelisk
Purbeck Way at the foot of Ballard Down below the obelisk

The track climbing up the end of Nine Barrow Down
The track climbing up the end of Nine Barrow Down

Behind us was a view back toward Swanage. On the right hand side of the track there were occasional views over Pool Harbour and ahead of us was a view over Corfe Castle along the Purbeck Hills.

We crossed the road and began the climb along the Purbeck Way up to the top of Nine Barrow Down. We followed the Purbeck Way for over 3.5km along the ridge.

Grassy track along the ridge of Nine Barrow Down
Grassy track along the ridge of Nine Barrow Down

Jersey cattle grazing bt the grassy track along the ridge of Nine Barrow Down
Jersey cattle grazing by the grassy track along the ridge of Nine Barrow Down

Grassy track along the ridge of Nine Barrow Down
Grassy track along the ridge of Nine Barrow Down

Wild flowers amongst the grasses beside the Purbeck Way
Wild flowers amongst the grasses beside the Purbeck Way

Poole Harbour seen from the Purbeck Way
Poole Harbour seen from the Purbeck Way on a rather gloomy day

Corfe Castle in the Purbeck Hills
Corfe Castle in the Purbeck Hills

A Dorset farmstead
A Dorset farmstead seen from the Purbeck way

Blackberries by the path
Blackberries by the path

We walked through the northern end of the village and kept on the Purbeck Way around the foot of the castle embankment.

At the radio mast at map ref. SY972821 we continued on the Purbeck Way down the hillside to Corfe castle village.

Dropping down into the village of Corfe Castle
Dropping down into the village of Corfe Castle

Siesta time for two Saanen goats
Siesta time for two Saanen goats

Corfe Castle above the cottages of the village
Corfe Castle above the cottages of the village

The village of Corfe Castle
The village of Corfe Castle

Looking back to Corfe Castle
Looking back to Corfe Castle

Looking back to Corfe Castle
Looking back to Corfe Castle

Heading north on the Purbeck Way toward  Norden  station
Heading north on the Purbeck Way toward Norden station

We walked about 300m along the road to the entrance to the "Park & Ride" car park to complete our walk. The whole route had been 11.5km and had taken us three and a half hours to walk. (We had a coffee break in Swanage before we set off)

About 600m from the village at map ref. SY956825, the Purbeck Way turns left but we continued straight on to the main road (A351).

Looking back to Corfe Castle from the Purbeck Way
Looking back to Corfe Castle from the Purbeck Way

Looking back to Corfe Castle from the Purbeck Way
Looking back to Corfe Castle from the Purbeck Way with Challow Hill to the left