The "Isle" of Purbeck is, in fact, a peninsula. To the east is Poole Harbour, with its sailing and watersports, and Brownsea Island, the birthplace of the scouting movement and now a National Trust reserve. To the west is the magnificent Lulworth Cove, beyond which is Weymouth, and then the fascinating Chesil Beach. Inland are the wonderful ridge walks of the Purbeck Hills, with panoramic views of the coast and of the Dorset countryside. This is the Wessex of Thomas Hardy's novels, a beautiful landscape of rolling hills, criss-crossed with footpaths, ideal for walkers. There are ancient churches, like that at Worth, castles, like the nearby majestic 1000 year-old Corfe Castle (once home to King John), and the Iron Age Maiden Castle. There are numerous atmospheric country pubs. A relaxing way to see the area is to take the 6-mile steam train ride between Swanage and Norden. The area offers birdwatchers the opportunity to view seabirds and peregrines on the coast, and waders in the marshes south of the Saxon walled town of Wareham. The RSPB reserve at Arne is very special, and recently marsh harriers started breeding at the Radipole Lake reserve, Weymouth. The home of T.E.Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) is nearby. Of course the highlight is the beautiful coastline. To the east are the sandy beaches of Swanage, then the fabulous Studland bay and nature reserve. To the west of Swanage is the famous Jurassic Coast, an UNESCO world heritage site. Spectacular rocky bays lie at the foot of dramatic cliffs, along which runs the 630-mile south-west coastal footpath. The coast is a geological wonderland, and rich in fossils (some of which may be seen in the museum in the Square & Compass pub in Worth).