When you live in a lovely place it’s very easy to take it for granted and hide away from the crowds in the summer, but today we all had a free day, so we met up with friends and had a proper, touristy day out. Everyone around us is on holiday having fun, so today was our chance to be tourists on our own patch. And it was brilliant! This is EXACTLY what the Jurassic Coast Card is all about!
Starting from Newlands Holiday Park in Charmouth, we caught the Jurassic Mule open-top bus along the Jurassic Coast. With a Jurassic Coast Card you get a free child place for each paying adult – this saved us £6 each straight away, so it was a bargain!
It was such a fun way to travel, being able to get views over the coast and fields, into back gardens and waving at buses coming the other way. Travelling in an open-top bus somehow makes you into an instant 1950s child! Going through Lyme Regis was great, and although we were heading for the beach at Beer, we decided to hop off in Seaton for a quick coffee & ice-cream stop (tickets are hop-on,hop-off). I’m very sorry Beer, but Seaton beach turned out to be so perfect we never made it any further!
There are lots of great cafes in Seaton, including Pebbles, and after a nice lunch we walked a hundred yards or so west along the beach and set up camp on the pebbles. It’s a nicely shelving beach, so you get deep enough to swim quite quickly (probably not ideal for little children), and the shelter of the cliffs by Beer meant that there was barely a ripple.
The sea was SO clear – even well out of our depth we could see every little detail on the seabed, and it felt very unlike the usual green, sometimes slightly soupy English sea. In fact, the phrase “it’s just like being on holiday” came up about every ten minutes! I kept feeling a bit jealous of everyone having such fantastic holidays, but then kept reminding myself it’s all ours any time we want it!
It’s a nicely sheltered beach, and would be equally good for fishing, kayaking, paddle boarding as it is for swimming. There were lots of paddle-boarders out, mainly hiring from the beach, and gangs of first-time kayakers testing their skills along the shore.
Lyme Regis has the atmosphere and hustle & bustle, and West Bay has great food and ice-cream etc; Sidmouth has the shopping & restaurants, Charmouth has fossils and West Bexington & co have the fishing – every beach around here has its strong points, but Seaton will definitely be my swimming beach from now on!
We got so relaxed that we just couldn’t gather ourselves in time to get to Beer, so we lazed about until the last bus home. Coming down the hill into Lyme Regis, with the coast all laid out beyond, was a fantastic sight, and added to the festive feel of a brilliant, old-fashioned day out. Simple, just beach, swimming and ice-creams, and a lot of chat, laughing and messing about. It WAS just like being on holiday, and we resolved to get out and do more days being tourists at home. There are still many things on the Jurassic Coast Card list that we haven’t tried, so there’s definitely a few more days like that to be done before summer is over!
9th August 2018