We’re just 40 minutes drive from The Jurassic Coast. Stretching for 95 miles along the coastline of southern England, within the counties of Dorset and Devon, it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the only place on Earth where rocks representing 185 million years of Earth’s history can be seen in once place.
The Geoneedle on Orcombe Point, Exmouth, marks the start of the Jurassic Coast.
Photo credit: Andrew on Flickr, April 2019
Exmouth is a traditional seaside town and is our nearest sandy beach. It’s great for water sports and has the longest promenade in Devon, providing a level walk right along the seafront with views out to sea and across to Dawlish Warren and the Exe Estuary.
Budleigh Salterton has 2.5 miles of pebble beach and red sandstone cliffs at the mouth of the river Otter. An unspoilt town with independent shops it has a level walk along the beach. The Otter Estuary is a Site of Special Scientific Interest with saltmarsh habitat and Triassic sandstone rocks.
Take a walk along the coast from Budleigh towards Sidmouth and you will find Ladram Bay, with it’s distinctive rock stacks.
The poet John Betjeman described Sidmouth as ‘A town caught in a timeless charm.’ The town has beautiful gardens, lovely walks, Regency history, a pebble beach (with wide expanses of sand when the tide goes out) and rock pools to explore. Stretches of the South West Coast Path are easily accessible.
Branscombe and Beer
Branscombe, said to be one of the longest villages in England, winds it way down two valleys (the origin of its name) to the sea. Park in the large car park behind the village hall, visit Branscombe Forge and then walk down the valley to the sea. We love the walk up the undercliff, but it’s not recommended for anyone who doesn’t like heights. There are great views from the cliff top along the coast to Beer Head and on a clear day you can see Portland and Berry Head.
Beer is a traditional fishing village where you can still buy freshly caught fish landed on the beach, take a trip out to sea mackerel fishing, or sit and enjoy a coffee or a meal right on the beach.
If you want to see rocks from all three geological periods you need to visit Seaton. The beach is over a mile long and ideal for swimming, kayaking, paddle boarding and fishing. Seaton Wetlands is a dog-free nature reserve so great to explore if you have young children or want a quiet day bird-watching. The town has a variety of independent shops and cafes. Explore the Axe Valley on a tram – take a trip from Seaton up the river to Colyton and back.
Lyme Regis and Charmouth
You can explore parts of Dorset easily from Forest Glade. Lyme Regis is a 45 minute drive and makes an ideal day out. There is something for everyone: fish and chips, pubs right on the sea front, independent shops, a working flour mill, a sandy beach, the famous Cobb, a theatre with views out to sea, a fossil museum and much more.
Charmouth, right next door to Lyme Regis, is famous for its fossils. It’s very likely that a walk along the beach will yield at least one find of fossilised remains. Charmouth Heritage Centre is free to visit where you can see amazing fossils or join a fossil-collecting walk. Golden Cap is the highest point on the south coast of England. It’s a challenging climb but the views from the top are worth it, all the way to Dartmoor in the West and to Portland in the East.
The Dorset Coastline
The Jurassic Coast stretches from Orcombe Point in Exmouth to Old Harry Rocks in Swanage. There is a digital guide available to download. The Dorset coastline includes many well-known locations including Chesil Beach, Portland, Durdle Door and Lulworth. Many of these are accessible from Forest Glade if you want to spend a day exploring the Dorset coast.
A great location for exploring Devon and Dorset
If you are looking to explore the Jurassic Coast on a camping or caravan holiday Forest Glade provides an ideal location. Set in a forest clearing and surrounded by 300 acres of pine forest Forest Glade is an ideal Devon getaway location.