Nothe Gardens Seaside Saunter

The Nothe Fort (keep link to their webpage) which is Weymouth’s Historic Sea Fort situated at the end of the gardens.

There is a Nothe Nature Trail which is available for children to take part – see if they can spot 8 animals and creepy crawlies hidden high and low around the garden. Look out for two noticeboards with a map of the clues on.

Also available is the Orienteering Course, which is a great way to take part in a fun, free activity and learn some basic navigation. It is suitable for everyone. You can walk or run, finding the markers making it as competitive as you like. You can either borrow maps from the Café at the Nothe, or you can download a pdf version of the map and instructions for you to print your own.

Positioned at a stunning location on a headland overlooking both Weymouth and Portland harbours, these informal gardens are one of the most beautiful the town has to offer.

There are an array of trees, established shrub beds and winding paths that lead down to sheltered slopes and picnic areas are ideal for walkers, sun bathers and families. The large grassed area is great for ball games while, at the foot of the gardens, the seashore is a fun place for children to go crabbing in the rock pools. Dogs are welcome but must remain on their lead throughout the whole gardens. However, there is an off-lead area opposite the Nothe Tavern.


Distance: 2.7km (0.9miles)

Average Time: 45mins (time may vary depending on pace)

Gradient: The top part of the gardens is gentle but there are slopes – some steep – leading down from the top gardens.

Starting Point: Nothe Car Parks

Public Transport: N/A

Parking: There is three pay and display areas for car parking operated by Dorset Council.

Accessibility: The top part of the gardens are accessible for wheelchair users, as you make your way towards the bottom it is slightly more difficult for wheelchair users as the slopes are steep or there are steps at the bottom.

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Café: There is a Café at the entrance to the gardens which is open during the summer with a terrace for sitting and enjoying the views.  There is also a Café in the Nothe Fort which serves a variety of food and drink, including gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options.  On the stone pier there is another Café open all year-round weather permitting which serves local produce and occasional musical events.

Ice Cream Hut: A small Wall’s Ice Cream hut, located at the entrance to Newton’s Cove, sells hot drinks and ice cream to passing trade during the warmer months.

Toilets: The public toilets are positioned in the centre of the gardens and are open all year round.

Cycle: Cycling is not permitted in the Nothe Gardens.

Point 1

From the car park you have the option to take a couple of different routes around the park but suggest the circular walk where you can go off at points to have a sit and enjoy the scenery.

From the play area take the path to your right which will take you down a shaded path where if you are lucky you will see the resident squirrels.

There are lots of fun activities to do around the Nothe Gardens like the Nature Trail and Orienteering (map).

Point 2

As you reach the end take the couple of steps down on the concrete path which runs along the bottom of the gardens, children can play in the rock pools (if low tide). There are a number of carved rock structures depicting sea creatures.

Point 3

The path will start to rise at the end towards the Nothe Fort. There are a couple of points where you can take another path around the Nothe Gardens, or you can continue to the Nothe Fort – one ticket is valid for a year so you can return as often as you want.

Point 4

If you have visited the Nothe Fort, where there is a Café serving a wide range of food and drink with gluten free, vegetarian and vegan options. 

Point 5

If you want to return to the Gardens you have two options; one to take any of the first couple of sets of stairs (which are steep) back to the Gardens or if you want a gentler set of steps continue until you reach the stone steps and you will be back at the top of the Gardens and can continue along the path under the trees.