I wasn't sure about parking at Sandbanks so I asked the chef for advice. He said ignore the large car park as you get there and carry on round the loop at the end, it is free parking with no restrictions on the road. He was right. I would have thought that all the posh residents would be up in arms about every Tom, Dick, or Harry parking right outside their multi million pound homes. I could see why they weren't that bothered though, high walls, electric security gates with intercoms, and tall trees giving ample screening to their investments. Once they have barricaded themselves into their little fortresses they couldn't give a toss about what was going on in the outside world.
Right at the end of the loop, at the entrance to Poole Harbour is a ferry which takes cars, buses and people travelling by any mode they wish, the short distance to the other side. It is very busy because it is a heck of a distance for anyone wanting to go to Swanage and the Isle of Purbeck by road. Just as I arrived it was getting ready for off, I quickly put my one pound coin in the machine and got a ticket.
This drive on drive off ferry is quite interesting, it does not travel across the water by it's own means, but is pulled by huge chains which go under the water. If you want to read more about this, here is the web site
The man in his crows nest driving, or is it piloting, the ferry.
It has room for 48 cars.
The huge chains which propel the diesel-hydraulic craft.
Stepping off the other side at South Haven Point, the view across Shell Bay.
I had intended to stay an hour or so there, just so I could say I had been on the ferry, but when I saw this sign for the South West Coast Path, I had to explore a little further.
I walked along the beach for over an hour and saw the white cliffs in the distance. In my dream like state and enjoying the glorious sunshine, I hadn't noticed the warning signs. Looking across to the sand dunes, I blinked and looked twice, then quickly looked away. It was a surprise to see people without any clothes on. Oh well, each to their own I suppose. I was more interested in the coastline up ahead.
Passing through the lanes of Studland I came across this pretty pub, The Bankers Arms, which was almost totally covered in a creeping ivy like plant. No time to stop, must press on, I have some ground to cover if I want to get back and take the other ferry to Brownsea Island.
It seemed a long trek to Old Harry, as the white rocks are named, I kept stopping briefly to admire the view. I came across two men with huge cameras on tripods who were filming right close to the edge. Me being nosey I asked if they wanted to film me, never one to miss an opportunity, ha ha. They said they were filming for a local TV news station because a dog had fallen over the cliffs a few days before. I wish they hadn't told me that, it certainly put a dampener on my day, the poor dog. Why are people so stupid as to let their animals wander loose in such a dangerous place.
I tried to put the dog to the back of my mind and took some more photo's. The scenery was certainly stunning.
I asked a nice young lady to take a photo of me, modelling my new sun visor.
The ferry coming out of Poole Harbour on it's way to France.
Time was getting on and I needed to get back pretty sharpish if I was going to Brownsea. I backtracked to Studland and took the footpath past this Norman Church.