Osmington Mills, Jurassic Coast Walks In Dorset, England, UK
Osmington Mills, Jurassic Coast Walks was about 7 miles in distance. The terrain of this route included paths over fields, occasional Tarmac; stony tracks; several hills most of which are gentle; and some road and lane sections. There is a potential for mud and an encounter with cows. Navigation is fairly easy and there are 6 stiles to negotiate.
This walk provides a great taste of Dorset’s famous coastline with some South Dorset Downs included. The circuit begins and ends at the welcoming Smugglers Inn, Osmington Mills. Along the route you will see the Osmlngton White Horse and some lovely coastal views along a section of the South West Coast Path.
Starting at the Smugglers Inn in Osmington Mills, leg one headed north along the road before going north west along field paths, roads and lanes to ascend Osmington’s White Horse Hill. Leg two turned south west along a path on the top of the Downs; then on paths and tracks it went downhill through a farm to go uphill again to meet a small road.
Leg three initially headed eastwards on a road and track before going downhill in a clockwise semi-circular direction along a path through undergrowth, bushes and trees to end up going east on the Coast Path to Ringstead. To complete the walk the fourth and final went west along the Coast Path west back to Osmington Mills.
Get an OS Map or a Walking Guide for your Walks
- Landranger 194 OS Map - Dorchester & Weymouth, Cerne Abbas & Bere Regis - 1:50,000 Scale
- Explorer OL15 OS Map - Purbeck and South Dorset, Poole, Dorchester, Weymouth & Swanage - 1:25,000 Scale
- Dorset Walking Guides
Osmington Mills, Jurassic Coast Walks Route
The Osmington Mills, Jurassic Coast Walks route was circular in a clockwise direction with four legs.
On this first leg we started at the Smugglers Inn, Osmington Mills and headed north along the road; then north west along field paths, roads and lanes to ascend Osmington’s White Horse Hill.
- Starting from the Smugglers Inn car park we headed north up the road.
- As the road began to bend to the right we turned left between hedges and trees on to a footpath at an obvious signpost to “Osmington”.
- After passing through a gate at the next signpost to “Osmington”, we crossed a boardwalk and passed through a gate.
- Walking along the right hand edge of a field the path then began to head uphill.
- We then crossed a stile next to a gate into another field with the path continuing uphill to a kissing-gate in the top right corner of the field.
- Beyond this kissing-gate we could see the Osmington White Horse on Osmington Hill beyond Osmington.
- After passing through the kissing-gate we went downhill on the right side of a field to another kissing-gate which led to another field.
- Again following the right edge of the field we passed through another kissing-gate and over a bridge under trees on to the A353 Road.
- We went left along the road, crossing over the road and turned right before The Sunray pub, following a Chapel Lane to its end.
- We then turned left along Village Street and right on Church Lane.
- Church Lane became a muddy track, the South Dorset Ridgeway.
- The track began to head uphill and after crossing a stile next to a gate, we saw our last glimpses of the Osmington White Horse on our left.
- The path climbed gradually, then more steeply as we went up the Osmington White Horse Hill.
- We continued on to the top where we enjoyed fabulous views of the lower land from where we had walked from.
Having walked about two mile to this point, the second leg headed south west along the top of the Downs on a path; then descended along paths and tracks through a farm to ascend again to a small road.
- At the top of the hill we turned right, heading south east along a grassy path on the top of the Downs with great views out to the coast, then after a while views in the other direction.
- We continued straight ahead, passing through two metal gates.
- As the path curved to the right we passed through two more metal gates and descended to a crossroads by a barn on our right.
- Here we passed through another metal gate and went straight ahead into a field and up over crest of a hill through yet another metal gate.
- Although it could have been easy to lose path here, we continued straight on, heading south east.
- We followed a faint path until it became an obvious track heading down hill towards trees.
- We passed through a metal gate and crossed straight over the A353 Road and downhill on a track.
- We continued on the track, going through a farmyard and then steeply uphill to a small road.
After about the 4.5 miles mark the third leg initially headed eastwards by road and track; then descended in a clockwise semi-circle along a path through undergrowth, bushes and trees to head east on the Coast Path to Ringstead.
- We turned left along the road for about lone kilometre until the Tarmac run out and we reach a car park with spectacular views along the coast and out to sea.
- We passed through a gate next to a cattle grid and walked through the car park straight ahead along a track.
- After crossing a stile next to a gate we went right at a waymarker post along a path through undergrowth, bushes and trees towards the coast.
- Heading steeply downhill we descended some steps; crossed a stile; crossed a track; crossed two more stiles; went through some woods; crossed another track and levelled out to reach the Coast Path.
- Here we turned right, passing through wooden barriers; down some steps; across two bridges and through a kissing-gate.
- The Coast Path was flat, passing between trees and hedges before crossing open ground on approach to Ringstead.
- After passing a caravan site on the left we reached a junction in Ringstead. On the right corner there was a kiosk that serves tea, sandwiches and other snacks, and had public toilets.
Having travelled about 6.5 miles, the fourth and final leg followed the Coast Path west back to the Smugglers Inn, Osmington Mills.
- Here we turned left towards the coast, ignored the next right turn and the path curved to the right to hug the coast from here on.
- As the path gently bobbed and weaved its way beside the coast; we passed through a wooded glen; crossed bridges and boardwalks; went up and down steps.
- After ascending and passing two bunkers on our right we had clear sea views and could see the Smugglers Inn ahead of us.
- We then descended towards Osmington Hill; passed through two kissing-gates; went through the grounds of the Smugglers Inn; and finally up steps back to the car park at the start.
When Done & With Whom
I did this hike with my partner Anne whilst on a Dorset hiking holiday during May 2012. We drove from our holiday accommodation in Puddletown, Dorset to the starting location of Osmington Mills, Dorset. We parked in the Smugglers Inn car park which was also the start location of the hike.