West Bay Beach -1

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This beach is considered to be the start of the famous 29km long Chesil Beach which stretches along the Jurassic Coast to the Isle of Portland in the east.
The golden sandstone cliffs known as East Cliff are 43m high and date back to Jurassic times. The ITV drama 'Broadchurch' first shown in March 2013, featured this pierand much of the local area including these cliffs.


West Bay Beach - Bridport visitor guide showing a virtual tour of 'West Bay Beach' linked to an interactive map with local and travel information. 360° panoramas from Dorset.

West Bay Beach lies next to the mouth of the River Brit, just south of Bridport in Dorset. The beach is part of Jurassic Coast and awarded UNESCO World Heritage Site status. It's outstanding natural beauty, diverse ecology and wildlife and it's intriguing geology has enjoyed such acclaimed recognition and draws visitors from all over the world. Just over the other side of the river are West Bay Harbour and West Bay Marina.

West Bay Beach has good amenities, fish and chips kiosks, cafes, toilets, car parking etc. There are numerous camping and caravan sites nearby and many hotels, guest houses, bed and breakfasts and hostels along this popular coastline. Boat trips both for sight-seeing and fishing excursions can be arranged locally. As the area is reliant on tourism, visitors are well catered for. The area is popular with walkers, and the Southwest Coast Path runs along the top of the cliffs.

West Bay Beach lies below East Cliff and because of the Jurassic geology is popular for fossil hunting. The rock here is an oil-reservoir rock, formed during the Toarcian and Aalenian age when Ammonites were present, thus they are often found as fossils here. This rock is also rich in metamorphic minerals (i.e. garnet). Of interest on the East Cliff is that bands of hard layers with a honeycomb texture and appearance. Formed from "cemented" compressed calcium carbonate, the texture has actually come from acid-rain erosion which fizzles away dents as the raindrops hit the surface. Although a negative thing, this does make the micro-sized fossils more easily visible to the naked eye. As the East Cliff shows an excellent example of this cleanly-exposed layering, the fossils located in a sedimentary band or layer at the foot of the cliff make this site a great spot for learning about palaeontology.


West Bay Beach
West Bay Road
West Bay, Dorset

Nearest tourist information office is in Bridport.


Road: From Bridport, the A34 road passes near to the beach. Take the junction for West Bay road and follow local signposts for beach access points.
Bus: West Bay
Train: Dorchester

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