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  • Writer's pictureClaire

Overnight camp and a hike for nature lovers around Arne

Updated: Oct 29, 2023

After missing Arne a couple of weeks ago due to a fire, we decided as we had a free day and night to do a quick camp and then visit Arne. As it was a last minute thing I headed to pitch up to see if we can find a free site that wasn't so far down as we were driving later due to another family arrangement. I found a campsite called Wooders Camping in Bere Regis that was very reasonably priced. There are two big fields at the edge of Wareham Forest that you can just pitch up to. One side is exposed and we saw a lovely sunset and the other side next to the forest saw and awesome full moon moonrise. Being exposed it was a little windy but the kids loved it as they could fly their kite. The campsite is also a family farm and there are cows, chickens and horses to view and pet. They also offered fire baskets for a small fee which I thought was a nice touch. I'd love to stay here for longer so we could explore the woodland a bit more.

As we were in a hurry squeezing this extra night in I forgot the washing up liquid, but to my absolute delight the washing area is equipped with washing up liquid, hand soap and anti-bac spray as well as the very familiar hand sanitising stations. The toilets and shower block were also spotlessly clean. I was very impressed.

When it came to settle the bill I met the owners who were very friendly and said this was their first full season after opening in August bank holiday last year. So I feel lucky to have found this spot. It is well located for all sorts of day trips in and around this part of Dorset so a definite winner of a weekend camp.

Next morning, after breakfast and packing up a picnic, we head over to Arne which is an RSPB Nature Reserve. The nature reserve is beautiful as it hosts such a wide variety of different habitats, from woodland, salt marsh and reed beds to sand cliffs that is home to sand lizards and ponds as well as meadowland; because of this there is such a lot of wildlife to be found. Also the views across the bay From Poole, Brownsea Island and over to Corfe are spectacular.

The longest walk is just shy of 3 miles which is a good length for my 3 year old, but you get to see all the habitats; and stop off at Shipstal Beach halfway round, for a paddle and a picnic. It makes a great day for getting out in nature. You can download this walk and see other information here:

Wooders Campsite

Shire horse sharing a field with chickens

Sunset and campsite cooking at Wooders campsite

View across Arne nature reserve

Family walking around Arne nature reserve

Shipstal Beach

Shipstal beach

Tide out at Shipstal Beach

Father and Son walking along Shipstal Beach

Boy walking in Arne Nature reserve by the sea

Woodland in Arne nature reserve

Woodland in Arne nature reserve

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