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Dorset and East Devon Coast

By Paulina

What are Dorset and East Devon Coast?

This UNESCO World Heritage site is one of the most significant areas in the UK due to its geology. With a history of 185 million years, this coastal region has many impressive rock formations from the Cretaceous, Triassic and Jurassic periods.

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Dorset is a county located by the English Channel in southwest England. It has some of the most iconic natural landmarks in the UK such as Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove. Moreover, half of this county has been classified as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

East Devon is the Jurassic Coast’s most western region. It stretches from Exmouth to Lyme Regis in Dorset. The whole coast of East Devon is part of the UNESCO World Heritage site which extends up to the Old Harry Rocks.

Durdle Door Beach on Dorset and East Devon coast: a beach with, at one end, a large natural rock arch, carved by the sea.
Durdle Door

Why are Dorset and East Devon Coast a UNESCO World Heritage site? 

In Dorset and East Devon Coast, plenty of notable fossils have been found: “both vertebrate and invertebrate, marine and terrestrial” according to UNESCO’s website. The coast offers “an almost continuous sequence of Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous rock formations spanning the Mesozoic Era.” It is also an important location for the study and teaching of palaeontology, geomorphology  and geology.

A rocky hill where the geological layers are visible and turned at a slant.

Is Dorset and East Devon Coast UNESCO site worth visiting? 

Called the Jurassic Coast, this is one of the most beautiful places to visit in the UK. Sandy beaches and dramatic cliffs with unique rock formations are only a few reasons to explore Dorset and East Devon Coast. With a shoreline of 95 miles (155 km), you will want to spend as much time as possible. However, a weekend trip from London will also offer you an unforgettable experience.

Some things to do along the Jurassic Coast.

What sorts of travelers would like Dorset and East Devon Coast?

Whether you want to relax at the beach or admire the views from the cliffs, this is a perfect destination for everyone. Moreover, it is a popular spot for professional photographers who want to capture incredible sunsets over Durdle Door Beach.

Tips for visiting Dorset and East Devon Coast

Because this area is located less than 3 hours’ drive from London, it’s a popular tourist destination. If you want to avoid the crowds and getting stuck in traffic, don’t go there during bank holidays. The beaches on the Jurrasic Coast get crowded very quickly, so try to get there in the early morning.

A bay of blue water at Dorset and East Devon coast.

Where is Dorset and East Devon Coast?

Dorset is a county on a border with Devon, Somerset, Wiltshire, and Hampshire. Its coast stretches from Highcliffe to the East Devon Coast. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is located in South West England.

Dorset: The biggest town outside the county of Dorset is Southampton. It is only 45 minutes drive to Bournemouth – the largest city in Dorset. There is a direct train between those two coastal towns, which takes around 30 minutes. 

Find accommodations in Southampton or Bournemouth.

East Devon Coast: Exeter is the biggest city near the East Devon Coast. It takes only 30 minutes to drive to the nearest seaside town: Exmouth. There is plenty of parking; however, there is a fee for parking. Alternatively, you can catch a train from Exeter to Exmouth, which takes 25 minutes. 

Find accommodations in Exeter or Exmouth.

For more information about Dorset and East Devon Coast, see the National Trust’s official website

Text and photos provided by by Paulina, author of ukeveryday.com. She shares her passion for traveling around England, Wales and Scotland. You can follow her on Instagram and Facebook

Have you been to the Dorset and East Devon Coast? If so, do you have any additional information or advice about this UNESCO World Heritage site? Please add your comments below!

Text: Dorset and East Devon Coast, England, UK. Images: above a wide view of a bay; below a view of white cliffs.

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