Here, at the eastern end of the Jurassic Coast, the white chalk of Old Harry Rocks gleams brightly in the sun. Passing boats and walkers stop to soak up the view.

This tranquil stretch of English downland records, in its chalk bedrock, the closing chapters of the story of the Jurassic Coast.

The Jurassic Coast Trust's Dr Anjana Khatwa presents the Top 5 Facts about Old Harry Rocks

How to Get There

Old Harry Rocks can be reached on foot from nearby Studland or Swanage. The nearest train station is Wareham. Check Traveline to plan your journey if taking public transport.

For further information, visit our Travel page.

Handfast Point, Old Harry Rocks
Handfast Point, Old Harry Rocks. © Alan Holiday

Where to Stay

We recommend staying at one of our nearby Business Partners such as Swanage Coastal Park. You can also hire a cottage in the area with holidaycottages.co.uk.

For a full list of local options, visit our Accommodation page.

Old Harry Rocks from sea Eddy Pearce
Old Harry Rocks from the sea. © Eddy Pearce

Things to Do

Old Harry Rocks
Old Harry Rocks in early morning sunshine. © Steve Belasco - jurassicphotographic.com

Walking

Old Harry Rocks can be seen up close on foot by walking from either Studland or Swanage across Ballard Down, a gorgeous chalk grassland that offers spectacular views across the Jurassic Coast.

Further south from Old Harry Rocks along the South West Coast Path is the charming coastal town of Swanage, and beyond that Durlston Country Park and Dancing Ledge.

The view across Swanage Bay. Photo M Simons DCC
Swanage. © Mark Simons

Boat Trips

To see Old Harry Rocks from the sea, as well as Swanage and other iconic Dorset landmarks, book a Jurassic Coast cruise with City Cruises Poole.

The Jurassic Coast Trust run an annual fundraising cruise with City Cruises Poole in May each year, featuring fish and chips, expert commentary from our local Ambassadors, and gorgeous sunset views of the Jurassic Coast. Visit our online shop for details of our next event.

City Cruises Poole selfie
Taking a selfie with Old Harry Rocks on board City Cruises Poole's boat. © Eddy Pearce

Food & Drink

The National Trust’s Knoll Beach Cafe at Studland Bay overlooks Old Harry Rocks and offers refreshment after a day’s walking.

knoll beach cafe studland
Knoll Beach Cafe, Studland.

Car Parking & Facilities

Parking is available at the National Trust’s Studland car park, or at one of the car parks in Swanage. Baby-changing facilities and push-chairs are available at nearby Knoll Beach.

Studland Bay
Harry Warren House and yachts moored off South Beach, Studland Bay. © Steve Belasco - jurassicphotographic.com

Need to Know: How Was Old Harry Rocks Formed?

From around 100 million years ago, during the Cretaceous period, countless skeletons of plankton began to drift to the bottom of a tropical sea here. Over the course of roughly 35 million years this process formed a thick blanket of white limestone known as chalk.

old harry rocks from sea
Old Harry Rocks from the sea in early morning sun. © Steve Belasco - jurassicphotographic.com