Winners of this year's Dorset Tourism Awards announced

Group of tourists on a RIB boat watch a dolphin playing nearby

Local dolphin encounters with Weymouth Bay RIB Charter who won the Resilience & Innovation category at the Dorset Tourism Awards - Credit:

At a day-long online awards ceremony, 54 winners were announced for the 2021/22 Dorset Tourism awards, with three more to be revealed in May, when winners and sponsors gather at the award-winning Sculpture by the Lakes at Pallington, which won gold, silver and bronze at this year’s event.  

Judges found numerous examples of excellence, innovation and resilience applied by businesses across Dorset as they fought their way over one hurdle after another, with many becoming significant contributors to the county’s efforts to support key workers. 

Chair of the judges, Professor Peter Jones, said: ‘The tourism industry has experienced the very lows of lockdown and the highs of the demands for staycations. What this year’s judging has shown is how resilient, creative and innovative Dorset tourism businesses have had to be to survive. They are working hard to overcome any setbacks and to showcase the excellence that Dorset tourism offers all of its visitors.’ 

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Two ladies having tea with their golden Labrador in a hotel foyer

Marsham Court Hotel in Bournemouth won three golds: Dog Friendly Business, Large Hotel of the Year and Business Events Venue of the Year. Treacle the dog with business development manager Jane Swift and managing director Rosie Wallace - Credit:

2021/22 DORSET TOURISM AWARDS sponsored by Quality in Tourism  

ACCESSIBLE AND INCLUSIVE TOURISM AWARD, sponsored by Bournemouth University: Gold - Ellwood Cottages Blandford Forum.   

APPRENTICESHIP SPECIAL AWARD, sponsored by NFU Mutual Wessex: To be announced in May.  

 B&B AND GUESTHOUSE OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Goadsby: Gold - St John’s Guest House, Weymouth; Silver - Channel View Guesthouse, Weymouth.  

Stylish bedroom with double bed and tray with champagne and glasses

One of the rooms at St John's Guest House in Weymouth - winner of B & B and Guest House of the Year - Credit:

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BUSINESS EVENTS & WEDDING VENUE OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Furleigh Estate: Wedding Venue of the Year - Highcliffe Castle, Christchurch; Business Events Venue of the Year - Marsham Court Hotel, Bournemouth. 

Beautiful hall decorated with white flowers and chairs for a wedding ceremony

Highcliffe Castle, once the home of Gordon Selfridge founder of Selfridges in London, won Wedding Venue of the Year - Credit: 2021 Phil Jackson/ Harbour View Photography

CAFÉ/TEAROOM OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Clipper: Gold - Picnic Park Deli, Bournemouth; Silver- Tangerine Café & Gallery, Beaminster; Bronze - EBIKE Café @Deheers, Weymouth; Commended - Pause Cat Café, Bournemouth. 

CAMPING & CARAVANNING PARK OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Anytime Booking: Gold - Monkton Wyld Holiday Park, Charmouth; Silver - South Lytchett Manor Caravan and Camping Park, Dorchester; Bronze - Higher Moor Farm Campsite, Weymouth. 

Aerial view of a pretty caravan park in West Dorset surrounded by green hills and fields

Monkton Wyld Holiday Park in West Dorset, Camping and Caravan Park of the Year - Credit: Neil Bigwood/

CASUAL DINING & RESTAURANT AWARD, sponsored by Furleigh Estate: Gold - The Station Kitchen, Bridport; Silver - Nicetta, Weymouth; Bronze - Shalims Indian Restaurant, Weymouth.

Decorated interior of an old train carriage, now an award-winning restaurant

The Station Kitchen at West Bay - with its award-winning restaurant inside a former World War One hospital carriage - winner of Restaurant and Casual Dining category - Credit:

DOG FRIENDLY BUSINESS OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Pear Marketing: Gold -  Marsham Court Hotel, Bournemouth; Silver - Burnbake Campsite and Forest Lodges, Corfe Castle; Commended - Polygon Pets Ltd, Poole. 

ETHICAL, RESPONSIBLE & SUSTAINABLE TOURISM AWARD, sponsored by Bournemouth Water: Gold - West Bay Discovery Centre, Bridport; Silver - Dorset Forest Garden Glamping, Beaminster; Commended - Naked Coffee, Bournemouth 

EXPERIENCE OF THE YEAR (ACTIVE OR LEARNING), sponsored by Saffery Champness: Gold - All Hallows’ Farmhouse Cookery School, Wimborne St Giles; Silver - Jurassic Coast Guides, Milborne St Andrew; Bronze - Shore Campers – Campervan Hire, Bournemouth. 

Double bed made up with linen inside a shepherd's hut with a glass roof

The Astronomer shepherd's hut at Dorset Forest Garden Glamping, Beaminster - Glamping Business of the Year - Credit:

GLAMPING BUSINESS OF THE YEAR, sponsored by NFU Mutual Wessex: Gold - Dorset Forest Garden Glamping, Beaminster; Silver - The Yurt at Hollands Farmhouse, Dorchester; Bronze -  At Goathill Farm, Sherborne.

HOLIDAY PARK OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Tozers: Gold: Highlands End Holiday Park, Bridport; Silver - Golden Cap Holiday Park, Chideock; Bronze - Waterside Holiday Park & Spa, Weymouth; Commended - Durdle Door Holiday Park. 

Drone view of a holiday park by the sea

Bird's eye view of the award-winning Highlands End Holiday Park, Bridport - Holiday Park of the Year - Credit: James Loveridge

LARGE HOTEL OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Hotel Perfect: Gold - Marsham Court Hotel, Bournemouth; Silver - Holiday Inn Bournemouth; Bronze - RNLI College, Poole; Commended - Moonfleet Manor Hotel, Weymouth. 

LARGE VISITOR ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Love To Visit: Gold - Moors Valley Country Park and Forest; Silver - Dorset Museum, Dorchester; Commended - Adventure Wonderland, Christchurch. 

Lake with a swan and a sculpture of a giant dragonfly on a calm autumn morning

Moors Valley Country Park & Forest on the eastern edge of the county won Large Visitor Attraction - Credit:

NEW TOURISM BUSINESS AWARD, sponsored by Visit Dorset: Gold - Carey’s Secret Garden, Wareham; Silver - The King’s Arms, Dorchester; Bronze - At Goathill Farm, Sherborne; Commended - Apex Expeditions, Poundbury. 

Click here to read our review of The King's Arms in Dorchester

OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION TO DORSET TOURISM, sponsored by Darren Northeast PR: To be announced in May. 

Egg shaped sculpture in a pond in a beautiful walled garden of flowers and paths

Carey's Secret Garden - a magical walled garden near Wareham - has won New Tourism Business of the Year - Credit:

PUB OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Dorset Food & Drink: Gold - The Acorn Inn, Evershot; Silver - The Grosvenor Arms, Shaftesbury; Bronze - The Cross Keys, Sherborne. 

RESILIENCE AND INNOVATION AWARD, sponsored by Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Tourism: Gold - Weymouth Bay RIB Charter; Silver - Shore Campers – Campervan Hire, Bournemouth; Bronze - Sculpture by the Lakes.

SELF CATERING ACCOMMODATION OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Touch Stay: Gold - Spring Cottage, Wareham; Silver - Greenwood Grange Holidays, Dorchester; Bronze -  Frog by the Sea, Chideock.

SMALL HOTEL OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Clockwork Marketing: Gold - The Pig on the Beach, Studland; Silver - The Grange at Oborne, Sherborne; Bronze - The Grosvenor Arms, Shaftesbury. 

SMALL VISITOR ATTRACTION OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Resort Dorset: Gold - Nothe Fort, Weymouth; Silver - Sculpture by the Lakes; Bronze - West Bay Discovery Centre; Commended - Bridport Museum Trust. 

TOURISM EVENT / FESTIVAL OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Dorset Magazine: Gold: FORM – The Sculpture Exhibition at Sculpture by the Lakes.

Middle aged woman outside by some woods

Christine Hughes of Moors Valley Country Park & Forest, winner of the Unsung Hero Award - Credit: Moors Valley Country Park

UNSUNG HERO AWARD, sponsored by Sculpture by the Lakes: Gold - Christine Hughes, Moors Valley Country Park; Silver - Mick Callaghan, Bournemouth Electric Club. 

VISITOR INFORMATION SERVICE OF THE YEAR, sponsored by Yellow Buses: Gold - West Bay Discovery Centre.       

WINNER OF WINNERS. sponsored by Dorset LEP: To be announced in May.  

Click here to find 20 famous film locations in Dorset