View-tastic farm camping with campfires on the Isle of Purbeck
Oh what we’d give to be the farmer at Knoll Farm on the Isle of Purbeck in Dorset. Tending the flock, with views down across marshes to the sea and, in the other direction, to the ruins of Corfe Castle standing magnificently in a pinch between two hills. Sure, farming is hard work. But the sunrise, which shimmers over Poole Harbour in the summer, and the dawn chorus from the adjacent Hartland Moor Nature Reserve, must make the early mornings worthwhile.
Today, however, you needn’t be the farmer to enjoy this well-placed parcel of land, at least not during the school summer holidays when the huge field beside Knoll Farm is opened up to campers. Every visitor sings the praises of the fine views, the ever-friendly hosts Nat and Darren, the communal weekend campfires and the general atmosphere of bonhomie that the campsite exudes.
And, while you may not need to be a farmer, this is unashamedly a farm campsite. Campers park beside a wonky fence and a couple of agricultural barns – now a handy sheltered space with rustic straw-bale benches – and set out into the field to find their pitch. And facilities, aside from water taps, toilets and some rustic-looking showers, are few and far between. But for campers who prefer wildlife over nightlife and open space instead of ‘premium serviced pitches', Knoll Farm hits the mark.
While many of the Jurassic Coast’s most popular attractions are within a half-hour drive – Lulworth Cove, Durdle Door, Kimmeridge Bay, Swanage, Studland and Old Harry Rocks, to name but a few – Knoll Farm really lends itself to walking. There’s a supremely scenic half-hour walk through Hartland Moor National Nature Reserve to the Blue Pool, a flooded former clay pit on the Furzebrook Estate with two signed routes through the surrounding woods and heath. Minuscule clay and chalk particles suspended in the water create the pool’s distinctive sparkling quality, sometimes a staggering turquoise colour. To the north, meanwhile, it’s a 50-minute walk into riverside market town of Wareham or it’s a 45-minute stroll south to Corfe Castle, where, along with the castle, the cream teas in the National Trust café make it worth the walk alone. And as for dinner? Well, it’s a 15-minute wander to a good pub at the end of the road. What more could you want?
Wareham, England, United KingdomTo respect the Host's privacy, the precise address of this land will be provided after booking
Hosted by Knoll C.Joined in October 2019
164 Ratings · 182 reviews
August 11, 2022
The field is so beautiful with a variety of views of Poole Harbour, Corfe Castle or the stunning heathland surrounding the entire site. Because of the protected heath there are strong policies for Fires & BBQs to ensure safety and they ask you take general rubbish off site, but will recycle glass, paper and hard plastics. There is live music at the weekends, and a variety of yoga classes on offer. The owners are super friendly and relaxed and couldn't do more to be helpful! Really cool festival vibe without the noise! Amazing stay, we will be back!!
August 11, 2022
Lovely relaxed campsite
We had a great weekend at Knoll Farm, really friendly, relaxed vibe and a lovely view over Corfe Castle from our pitch. Great entertainment both evenings and we loved the mass sunset watching on Saturday evening. Safe use of fire pits with buckets of water on hand on a really hot weekend. We will be back!
August 9, 2022
Camping with excellent views
Excellent campsite run by fabulous people with great entertainment in the evenings. Have had three visits here now and wouldn’t go camping anywhere else in Dorset.
August 9, 2022
Great nature location for vocation
Beautiful place, showers and toilets very clean and looked after, was great pleasure. Wonderful location, can’t ask more, we biked to the coast, it is very safe and beautiful Nature to be in.
August 8, 2022
Exceptional camp site
Just back from our second visit to Knoll Hill and cannot recommend it enough. There is a certain 'vibe' on this site - whether it's the yoga, the weekend live music or even the kids in their element - this all makes for an exceptional site. There are no pitches as such and part of the land is a gentle hillside but there's plenty of flat bits, lovely sweeping views too. They don't charge the earth and dogs are free. Nat (the camp boss) is super friendly and welcoming. We have been camping for years and this is a stand-out site. They haven't seen the last of us that's for sure.
August 8, 2022
We loved the camping! Very clean and welcoming.
From the host
Knoll Farm is situated just outside Corfe and has beautiflul view of the castle and the top ridge offers sea views. We are a realxed, family run site looking to create a space where you can truly unwind. The local are offers so many amazing places visit such at Durdle Door, Lulworth Cove, Swanage and Studland Beach to name a few. We have yoga classes onsite as well as weekend enterainment and onsite weekend food. We also have a community fire pit that we light on the weekend, feel free to bring your guitar 😊. Please note we can no longer accept camper vans.
The magnificent view from the campsite to ruined Corfe Castle, two miles away, will no doubt make you want to visit. It’s a five-minute drive or 45-minute walk to the village and 11th-century castle of the same name (one of the first castles to be built in South West England by William the Conqueror). The castle and much of the village is now owned by the National Trust, which means there are well-organised family activities in summer, as well as good cream teas in the tearooms. Corfe Castle is one of a handful of stops on the Swanage Railway (01929 425800), the closest being the end-of-the-line stop in Norden just a mile from the campsite, so you can ride the old steam train from the castle to Swanage Bay or back towards camp. (A variety of one-way, three and five day, and all-day, hop-on/off tickets are available, as well as standard day-returns.) The beautiful market town of Wareham, set alongside the River Frome, is a 10-minute drive away or a long walk via Stoborough Heath National Nature Reserve. Another nature reserve – Hartland Moor – is on the other side of the campsite and the Furzebrook Estate, home to the Blue Pool and a series of marked walking trails, is just beyond, also within walking distance. But no visit to the Jurassic Coast would be complete without taking in the area’s famous beaches (and perhaps spending some time fossil hunting while you’re down on the shore). Lulworth Cove, Sandbanks, Swanage Beach, Man O’War Beach and Kimmeridge Bay are all less than half an hour away, as well as some of the coastline’s most striking features, such as the rock arch of Durdle Door or Old Harry’s Rocks, the sea stacks off of Studland Bay.
Food and drink
It's a half-mile walk (15 minutes or so) to The Halfway Inn (01929 480402), a snug, partly thatched, 16th-century, beamed pub where dogs and children are both more than welcome. Local Badger beers are on tap and the freshly cooked food includes children's, vegetarian and vegan choices. When the sun's out, there's a lovely picnic area on the paved terrace and lawn. There are plenty of good choices in nearby Wareham too, including the riverside Quay Inn (01929 552735) and The Old Granary (01929 552010), while, closer still, the Kings Arms in Stoborough (01929 552705) has wonderful views over marshes to the River Frome.