For many, Dorset conjures up the kind of halcyon holiday memories found in flickering 1970s home movies, and the county does still deliver arcade-loads of seaside kitsch. But it also offers so much more. Here you can hike, kayak or swim beside the sea-carved bays and rock arches of the stunning Jurassic Coast, then scour fossil-packed beaches for your own prehistoric souvenir. Immerse yourself in Thomas Hardy's lyrical landscape, then discover massive Iron Age hill forts, rude chalk figures, must-see stately homes and fairy-tale castles. Hang out in resorts packed with party animals then chill-out on beaches beloved by multimillionaires. Or learn to harness the wind in 2012 Olympic sailing waters. These days there's a whole new side of Dorset waiting to be explored.