East Devon represents the most westerly section of the Jurassic Coast, and is full to the brim with exciting and informative opportunities for visitors.

Exmouth

Exmouth is the western gateway to the Jurassic Coast.

The town has been a popular seaside resort since the 18th century and is thought to be the oldest holiday resort in Devon.

The beach has two miles of golden sand and a wealth of rock pools to explore. It is also a popular destination for watersports including kite surfing, kayaking and windsurfing.

The nearby Exe Estuary is one of the most beautiful in Britain, and is a haven for birdlife.

Exmouth Geoneedle
The Exmouth Geoneedle, which marks the most westerly point of the World Heritage Site. Photo © David Westcott.

Sidmouth

Picturesque Sidmouth nestles beneath majestic Triassic red cliffs and the green hills of the Sid valley.

It originally developed as a fishing village, before experiencing considerable development as a seaside resort during the 18th and 19th centuries.

There are many fine villas and mansions dating from this period which give the town a charming, timeless feel – many of these have now been converted into hotels, and Sidmouth’s wide promenade has been a prominent seafront feature since the Regency period.

The distinctive Jacob’s Ladder is a white, wooden staircase leading from the beach up to Connaught Gardens in the cliffs above. From here you can enjoy wonderful views of the surrounding coastline.

Sidmouth
Jacob's Ladder and the historic building that now houses the Clock Tower Cafe, Sidmouth. © Steve Belasco - jurassicphotographic.com

Beer

The white chalk cliffs at Beer are the most westerly in England, representing the end point of a geological phenomenon that spans continents.

Beer makes an ideal holiday destination, whether you’re staying for an hour or a week.

There’s the charming miniature railway of Pecorama, spectacular cliff-top Walks, the eerie Beer Quarry Caves, and a bevy of charismatic cafes and pubs sprinkled throughout the village.

Beer Head, East Devon, UK
Beer Head. © Steve Belasco - jurassicphotographic.com

Seaton

Seaton is one of the Jurassic Coast’s up and coming towns, and is a great place to visit to get your Jurassic Coast fix without the crowds.

The town’s coastal promenade is great for contemplative strolling, whilst its shingle beach is the perfect spot for a dip on a warm Summer’s day.

Seaton Wetlands is a protected nature reserve that offers fantastic bird-watching and all-ages walking opportunities year-round.

The town’s attractions include Seaton Jurassic and Seaton Tramway, whilst nearby Axmouth provides access to the enchanting Undercliffs Reserve.

seaton beach huts
Beach huts along Seaton beach. © Steve Belasco - jurassicphotographic.com

Lyme Regis (western end)

Although Lyme Regis town itself is located in Dorset, its western end creeps into East Devon.

This section includes the access point for the Undercliffs Reserve, which makes for a fantastic walking experience with a hint of wilderness to it.

There’s also Monmouth Beach, home to the Ammonite Pavement, an incredible collection of “in situ” fossils, embedded in the rock of the beach.

Treading the beach here is like stepping back in time, to when this part of the world was underwater, and its warm tropical seas played host to predatory Pliosaurs, bountiful belemnites, and an abundance of ammonites.

It’s also a reminder of the fragility of our geological heritage, as recent rising sea levels and changing weather conditions have rapidly broken up the preserved fossils, returning them to the sea.

ammonite pavement
The ammonite pavement of Monmouth Beach, to the west of Lyme Regis. Photo © Rockman of Zymurgy via Flickr.com