The Jurassic coast path is a unique long-distance walk stretching from Exmouth in the west to South Haven Point near Poole. The walk represents a walk through 185 million years of the earth’s history, the area’s important fossil sites and classic coastal geomorphologic features have contributed to the study of earth sciences for over 300 years which is why it has been recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site
Traditionally the Jurassic Coast Path walk is walked from west to east so that the wind is to your back and the sun in your face as you head eastwards, although having walked it both ways I can not really discern the difference. Footscape have detailed trail guides for both West and East and East to West. This can be particularly useful if trying to find accommodation whilst the Lulworth Range is open to walkers.
Starting from the coastal resort town of Exmouth your walk heads out along the esplanade towards Sidmouth. The first days walk takes you past some wonderful headlands before reaching the pretty seaside town of Budleigh Salterton, a good place to stop for lunch before carrying on to Sidmouth, an excellent place to stop for the night. Sidmouth is a Georgian/Regency seaside town still possessing what Jon Betjeman called ‘ A town caught still in a timeless charm’.
The next day commences with a walk along the coast past the magnificent red sandstone sea stacks at Ladram Bay and onward to Branscombe where the MSC Napoli ran aground in 2007. The wreck caused mayhem at the time with many from all over the country rushing to the coast to plunder the beached goods.
The following day takes you through what is known as the Undercliffs an area of approximately seven miles of collapsed cliffs whose wildlife and vegetation This is a stretch of coast that is quite different to any other on the Jurassic Coast path. Today’s walk finishes in the ancient town of Lyme Regis with its prominent Cobb harbour. This is a great place to stop for the day to visit the fossil museums or perhaps walk out onto the beach to Charmouth where fossils can literally be found lying on the beach.
Your walk then continues over Golden Cap, the highest point on the South Coast before continuing to West Bay a fishing town and Abbotsbury where you will find the remains of an ancient monastery.
Continuing to Weymouth you have a choice to stick to the mainland to Lulworth and the iconic Durdle Door or take another day in Weymouth to walk the Isle of Portland.
To proceed on foot from Lulworth over the Army range you must cross during the school holidays or at the weekend. As you cross the Army range you will come across the deserted village of Tyneham cleared in 1943 to aid the war effort and still containing the local buildings such as the school and the church literally unchanged for nearly eighty years. Your walk continues to Kimmeridge with its interesting Etches fossil museum and the pretty village of Kingston within sight of the ruins of Corfe Castle.
Your final days walk takes you to Swanage and Studland where you will pass the dramatic sea stacks of Old Harry and the Pinnacles. Continue along the golden sands of Studland Bay and Shell Bay before reaching your final destination of South Haven Point. The most easterly point of the South West Coast Path.
If you would like us to arrange this a walking holiday along the wonderful Jurassic Coast Path have a look at our page Jurassic Coast Walks and contact us to discuss your tailored itinerary to completely suit your needs.