Jurassic Coast: An Ultimate Guide to Travel for the First Time
You’ve heard of Jurassic Park from the film series, but do you know that England has a real Jurassic Coast? Yes, it is one of the most popular destinations in the UK, which attract visitors from all over the world.
Visiting the Jurassic Coast, you will have the feeling of fully enjoying the mysterious beauty of nature. The history of this land carries with it the presence of fossilized, majestic dinosaurs. The cliffs reveal the secret of all the old splendor of this site.
Jurassic Coast stretches for 95 miles along the south of England. The white cliffs towering above the sea are an iconic image of Great Britain. Furthermore, while the Jurassic Coast has some of the best sceneries in the UK, it is much more than just amazing vistas. Here, you can relax on long golden beaches or explore rock pools in coves. Wandering at decaying castles and hunting for dinosaur fossils on the beaches. Then, after walking along the windswept coastal paths, you can warm up in a cozy English pub with a glass of local beer. Definitely, it’s a great place to be for a few days or even a week!
Things to Do on Jurassic Coast
In fact, Jurassic Coast is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. No doubt, it is one of Britain’s most beautiful regions. From incredible seaside scenery to charming seaside towns, rugged hiking trails to the coolest local breweries; here’s a selection of Jurassic Coast attractions.
It’s Jurassic Coast’s iconic image of all time. Throughout the time, crashing waves eroded much of the limestone, leaving a beautiful natural arch trapped in the open sea. From the Durdle Door car park, you take a 5-minute walk to this stunning view.
This part of the Jurassic Coast has some of the best scenery anywhere in Dorset. Right next to the mouth of Durdle Door, the beautiful wide sands of Man O’War beach make an attractive beach corner. f you have more energy, walk along the undulating paths that cling to the cliff edges with stunning views along the coast and out to sea. It’s one of the best short walks in Dorset!
Lulworth Cove is surrounded by white chalk cliffs. You can see in this area the interaction of marine erosion on an alternating sequence of soft and hard rock as one of the best examples in Europe. Here, all the different layers in the rock where they formed over the ages are viewable. It’s truly the visual evidence of the earth’s constant motion on the Jurassic Coast.
Located in the east of Lulworth Cove, Fossil Forest includes a cluster of fossilized stumps, as well as stems and roots, all dating from the Jurassic period. Actually, the area was underwater till about 150 million years ago, when a temporary drop in sea levels allowed plants and trees to grow. As the climate changes, forests die due to water levels increasing again. Nevertheless, their remains have been preserved by limestone deposits. Hence, you can walk among the much older trees than the surrounding rocks in the “forest”.
It is a beautiful seaside town with a beautiful beach and a small harbor. Yet, the abundance of fossils found in this area is the main factor that makes Lyme Regis an important site on the Jurassic Coast. The famous Georgian fossil hunter Mary Anning discovered her first ichthyosaur skeleton when she was 12 years old – right at Lyme Regis beach! Additionally, there is a brilliant museum where you can learn more about the history of the area and see countless fossils.
Old Harry Rocks
Old Harry Rocks marks the farthest point in the east of the Dorset Jurassic Coast. These are three chalk walls stretching out into the sea from Purbeck Island. As a local legend, the rocks were named after Harry Payne, a pirate from nearby Poole. Certainly, Old Harry Rocks are the most dramatic stretches of coastline in the UK. Here, you will have a feast for the eyes with stacks of dazzling white chalk assembled like a jigsaw puzzle waiting to be completed.
There are several different ways to view it. You can hike along the peaks, mountain bike through the cliff-edge trails, kayak around them, or take a scenic boat tour.
Portland Island, which is connected to the mainland by the arc of Chesil Beach, stretches out into the English Channel. Its southern tip is Portland Bill, which has a dangerous and dramatic coastline.
Even if you’ve never heard of Portland, you may see its rocks somewhere. Indeed, Portland Limestone was used to build St Paul’s Cathedral in London, as well as countless other important structures. At Portland Bill, the man-made Pulpit Rock is a testament to the quarry that once operated there. Also, Tout Quarry has now been turned into a nature reserve and a beautiful sculpture park.
Abbotsbury village remains as traditional English as it is and makes an ideal stop for a Jurassic Coast trip. Even, it was the setting for the Far from the Madding Crowd film by Thomas Hardy. You should explore the village shop, post office, boutiques, and teahouse before heading to St Catherine’s Chapel perched on a hill.
St Catherine’s Chapel is impressive, but the views from there are even better. You can see Chesil beach and fishermen from all over come to this beach to fish in the deep waters just offshore.
From March to October is the ideal period of time that you can visit Abbotsbury Swannery. Moreover, you can see hundreds of swans in the water while strolling the paths here. Especially, during nesting season, there is no place in this world except here where you can walk past a flock of nesting swans.
Important Information About the Jurassic Coast
The Best Time to Visit Jurassic Coast
From May to early July is the best time to visit the Jurassic Coast when the days are long and dry. Besides that, September and October are also good. From mid-July to late August the weather is great, but the area is extremely busy. The winter months can be cold and wet, but if there is a sunny day it is a truly beautiful place to explore during the winter.
Getting to the Destination
There are ways that you can take to reach Jurassic Coast:
- You can take domestic flights to Bournemouth or Southampton airports, just east of the Jurassic Coast.
- In addition, you can fly direct from Dublin, Paris, or Amsterdam.
- However, the majority of visitors will need to travel through London.
Transportations for You to Visit the Area’s Attractions
You can use the bus and train networks to explore the Dorset coast, but they don’t run as often. Many of the best destinations are just a few hours to visit. They are located at the end of small roads or in small villages. Exploring the Jurassic coast by bus is the perfect way to simply sit back and admire the view from the bus.
Accommodations at Jurassic Coast
Unsurprisingly, there are many accommodation choices on Jurassic Coast. On top of that, I picked 3 outstanding hotels with unique values that give you the best experiences while staying there to explore the area. Here are my 3 choices of hotels around the Jurassic Coast:
The Pig on the Beach
– Address: Manor House, Manor Rd, Studland, Swanage BH19 3AU, UK.
– Unique values:
- Charming vintage decoration
- Beautiful Studland views
- Less than 5-min walk to Old Harry Rocks
- Micro-seasonal menus
– Rates: from ~ ￡341.00
The Green House
– Address: 4 Grove Road, Bournemouth BH1 3AX, United Kingdom.
– Unique values:
- Spectacular, sustainable Modern British dining
- The UK’s most eco-friendly hotel
- 5-min walk to Bournemouth beach
– Rates: from ~ ￡129.00
The Pig at Combe
– Address: The Pig at Combe, Gittisham, Honiton EX14 3AD, UK.
– Unique values:
- Envy-including gardens
- Glorious grounds
- Varied outstanding food
- Extensive list of wine
- Beautiful walk to reach the coast
– Rates: from ~ ￡224.00
Be Careful When You Exploring the Places
The risk of landslides and falling rocks increases after extreme weather and sea conditions. Travelers to the place are encouraged to follow safety advice along the coast as landslides and rockfalls can happen quickly and without warning. Furthermore, walking along the coastal roads can be muddy and slippery at times – remember to always stay on official routes and always obey warning signs.
Whether you want to hunt for fossils, visit a museum, or simply take in the beautiful scenery on a stroll, you’ll find there are plenty of things to do on Jurassic Coast, no matter what time of year.
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