What more idyllic setting for a family break than a hotel intriguingly named Moonfleet Manor? If it sounds like something out of an adventure novel, it is: steeped in smuggling history, the house formed the backdrop for John Meade Falkner’s swashbuckling novel of the same name. Built for Maximilian Mohune and overlooking Fleet Lagoon and Chesil Beach, the big, friendly Georgian house has a spectacular location. Its elegant, beautifully-proportioned and welcoming interiors provide the perfect contrast to the spine-tingling landscape of Chesil Beach, an 18 mile-long stretch of pebbles (about 180 billion, they reckon) and setting for the eponymous film based on Ian McEwan’s novel. With its Ofsted- registered crèche, Verandah, indoor play zone, outdoor sandpit and playground, tennis courts, spa treatment rooms and indoor pool, plus fine dining in the Mediterranean-style restaurant and bedroom decor that ranges from grand Georgian to colonial chic or contemporary, Moonfleet is truly a family affair.
Be sure to take a walk along the South West Coastal path, situated at the bottom of the hotels garden – you can head west to Abbotsbury or east to Portland. Also be sure to keep your eyes peeled on the shore line for fossils!
Head west down the Jurassic Coast line to the village of Burton Bradstock to the Hive Beach Café – perfect spot to take in the stunning scenery and try some fantastic local produce.
Head west from the hotel to the market town of Bridport – where little boutique shops and an array of little cafes and restaurants awaits.