Dorset County Museum

a photo of the exterior of Dorset County Museum
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Dorset County Museum contains a wealth of information about Dorset’s culture and history.
Six Galleries set out nearly 200 million years of Dorset’s history, culture and its natural environment.

Two of the most popular galleries are the Ancient Dorset and the Jurassic Coast galleries.
In the form of a Tableau, the Ancient Dorset Gallery displays the lives and artefacts that the many different peoples who lived on and around the South Dorset Ridgeway left. It starts with the Ancient Britons and progresses to the Romans, Saxons and Vikings. The fascinating displays show the jewellery, coins and pottery that these peoples left. Wonderful Roman mosaics are on the floor and walls of the museum.

In the Jurassic Coast gallery the fossilised jaw and skull of a Pliosaur has the title of the ‘World’s biggest bite’. Many other fossils from the museum’s extensive collection show the history of the Jurassic Coast.

In the other Galleries the lives of famous Dorset writers, notably Thomas Hardy and Rural Dorset is set out reflecting the cultural life of the county through the ages.

There are always new events and exhibitions that will be interesting for the whole family, in short a must see attraction for visitors to Dorchester.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Mon-Sat 1000-1600 1 Nov to 31 March, Mon-Sat 1000 - 1700 1 April to 31 October
Sundays 10.00 - 17.00 24 July to 11 September.

Admission charges

Adults £6.35
Adults Gift Aid £7.00
Over 60 Gift Aid £6.50
Over 60 standard £5.90
Concessions £5.00
All above include two accompanying children 5 -16 FREE
Disabled Gift Aid £6.50
Disabled Standard £5.90
Both above include one carer FREE
Child/Student £3.60
Children under 5 yrs FREE

Collection details

Archaeology, Archives, Natural Sciences, Costume and Textiles, Fine Art, Music, Coins and Medals, Personalities, Social History

Exhibition details are listed below, you may need to scroll down to see them all.
Image of a train

Speed to the West

  • 19 March 2016 — 7 January 2017 *on now

An exhibition featuring over 50 famous railway posters to encourage holiday makers to escape the humdrum of every day life and travel by train to the resorts, towns and country side in Dorset, Devon Cornwall and Somerset

Suitable for

  • Family friendly


Adult £6.35
Over 60 £5.90
Above includes 2 accompanying children 5 -16 yrs FREE
Children under 5 FREE
Children 5 - 18 & students £3.60
Disabled £5.90 (including one carer FREE)

Dorset County Museum
High West Street




01305 756827

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.