A Day Out – Dorset’s Jurassic Coast

In June I took some time off work to enjoy the sunshine and get a few jobs done. I’d spent all my money booking things coming up later in the summer, so I spent this week doing things that didn’t cost very much and one of those things was walking about. On one day I walked from town to a local village and back. The next day, the day I talk about today, I jumped into the car with my camera and headed to the beach.

I live on what we now have to call the ‘Jurassic Coast’, marketing-speak for all the fossils and that between Lyme Regis and Weymouth. It used to be called Lyme Bay but that seems to be forgotten now. From time to time it does you the world of good to remind yourself what is on your doorstep. Charmouth is ten minutes from me, Lyme Regis only another five or so (both more with summer traffic).

I’m afraid this is going to turn into a series of photoblogs of my summer so if you like that sort of thing stay tuned to the blog!

Charmouth

Beach huts at Charmouth

Charmouth is a sleepy village, it has been ever since the A35 bypass took all the passing traffic around the outside of it (thankfully so – it was a nightmare before then and modern traffic levels are far higher!). It hosts a lot of caravan parks for visitors, a few shops, and a beach. You do have to pay to park in the beach-side car park but as that provides for the upkeep of place that’s not unreasonable.

I really like the photo above of the beach huts in a row, in line with the cliffs. This part is actually in the valley between two cliffs. The flat-topped hill is Golden Cap, the highest cliff in Dorset. I like that the huts are sky/sea-coloured, that they are neat and tidy yet the beach is completely natural and not messed about with or tidied up. That’s very West Dorset, and how it should be! Like the rest of the West Dorset coast the beach is very pebbly and the waves make a lot of noise against the stones. Makes me feel at home.

  

Charmouth Beach
A novel way to get around

After a quiet little while wandering the beach I hopped into the car and headed to Lyme Regis.

Lyme Regis

If you’ve never been to Lyme, be warned it is quite hilly (understatement).  If you prefer a nice amble along the seafront, as I happened to on this day, you can avoid the hills completely (well almost completely – you still have to walk from the car). If you don’t mind the hills, do take a walk around the place to explore.

It has been a few years since I was last here and the front has been redeveloped. The most notable change is the raising of the beach level to meet the road – there used to be a drop of several feet. Lyme beach itself is a little different – there is a long pebbly section but then a sandy part by the Cobb (the old little harbour) where you can sit and watch the boats.

The Cobb & beaches

I really loved the light on that day, not only did it look fantastic it also brought the best out of my camera. I was and still am getting used to my Nikon DSLR. It was a day when I’d be happy to choose any one of many photos to highlight here, and that doesn’t happen very often!

If you get the chance to visit the Dorset coast on a warm sunny spring or summer day I really recommend it. Autumn/winter is okay but it really does come into its own on a warm sunny day when people have got their boats out.  Just amble around with a camera with the sun on your back. I’d not had a day this relaxing in a long time.

You can see the full set in my June 2012 album (which is actually just photos of June 19th). I rounded up the day with a few photos of my town, Bridport. It was evening by then, not that it looks it, and it gets quiet midweek evenings.  The bunting was up for the Jubilee and the Olympics!

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