- Location: Southern England, Devon and Dorset Coasts
- Best time to Visit: Winter is the best time for fossil hunting. Spring is the best time for observing the geological wonders and travel on foot or by boat. It is when you get the best views.
- How to reach: There are regular bus services to the Jurassic Coast from Exeter, Sidford, Charmouth, Bridport, Abbotsbury, Weymouth, Wareham, Poole, Beer, and Seaton.
Ever since Spielberg’s iconic movie, you know what to expect when the word ‘Jurassic’ is spelled out. It is, therefore, no wonder that it is with an expectation to see dinosaur fossils that is on the top of your mind when you plan a trip to the Jurassic Coast in England. However, it is important to remember that the Jurassic age is as much about a unique and rugged landscape as about dinosaurs. It is an important stage in the world’s geological development, and the cliffs and mountains that date back to the period are as fascinating as the mighty fossils themselves. It was the world where the dinosaurs walked, after all. Jurassic Coast gives you the whole package: cliffs, rugged landscape, and dinosaur fossils too!
The Dorset and East Devon Coast are declared the first natural World Heritage Site of England and it is popularly known as the Jurassic Coast. Expanding from Orcombe Point near Exmouth in East Devon to Old Harry Rocks near Swanage in East Dorset and covering a distance of 153 kilometers, the Jurassic Coast is a World Heritage Site on the English Channel coast of southern England. A visit to Jurassic Coast offers a unique insight into life in the past through the rocks exposed along the 95 miles of stunning coastline.
What to see and do
The coastline and the beaches near Charmouth and Lyme Regis have fantastic fossils. If you are making a visit to the Jurassic Coast, you must visit the scenic beaches of West Dorset and enjoy various coastal activities such as scuba diving, snorkeling, sea angling, sailing, and windsurfing.
The Jurassic is embodied well between Pinhay in Devon and Kimmeridge in Dorset and it provides a comprehensive record of every stage of the Jurassic through exceptional fossils. Marine reptiles continue to be found along with numerous new species. A remarkable new specimen of Scelidosauras dinosaur and many other fossils, often with outstanding conservation, make this coast a top-notch site for paleontology.
The Jurassic-early Cretaceous terrestrial sequence, in the Purbeck Formation, is one of the finest in the world. Sea stacks of chalk which are the finest examples of the youngest Mesozoic rocks are found at the distant eastern end of the Old Harry rocks. The coast of East Devon shows the rocks of the Triassic period. It is also the richest Mid-Triassic reptile sites in Britain. Along the Jurassic Coast, you may watch dolphins dancing in the waves, basking sharks out in the deeper water and various species of birds.
While visiting this famous coastline of Jurassic and its countryside, there are different places of interests for you to explore and some of them include ancient castles, beautiful gardens, bird sanctuaries, animal rescue centers, giant aquariums, heritage railways, historic buildings and museums along with memorable boat trips along the coast.
Where to dine and stay
The Jurassic Coast is well-served by its Gateway Towns and villages which provide a wide range of accommodation, museums and tourist centers throughout the area. In addition to them, the ‘Anchor Towns’ of Exeter, Bournemouth, Poole, and Christchurch also offer a comprehensive range of facilities.
For those seeking peace and comfort, Jurassic Coast with its rolling green hills and charming villages is the ideal paradise. There are numerous country pubs and lots of restaurants to refresh you.