Beach life

Durdle Door, Dorset

Located along Dorset’s World Heritage Jurassic Coastline, Durdle Door is a coastal sensation capable of wowing even the most seasoned traveller.

Surrounded by limestone cliffs warped into patterns of faults and folds, Durdle Door’s rocky walls end in a perfect natural limestone arch. At 200ft high, this magnificent archway stands high above the sea, the product of 10,000 years of coastal erosion. Rising out of the crystalline waters below, it truly is one of the most breath-taking sights in the UK and makes for the perfect location for a day of adventure, whatever the weather.

If you can’t wait to visit this fantastical piece of natural architecture, you can access Durdle Door’s beach from the path from Lulworth Cove (also a must-see) or down from the nearby car park at the top of the cliffs. A little bit of a stretch, there is a half-mile walk along a steep, downhill path followed by a further 143 steps down onto the beach, but we can assure you the effort is more than worth it. 

For the best view in the house, spread out a picnic blanket atop the cliffs and gaze down at the beach below. With the sun high in the sky, nothing will beat tucking into an alfresco cream tea as the views unfurl before you. Or, to really get a sense of its scale, head down to the shore and gaze up at the arch, shimmering with refracted light bouncing off the sea. Never failing to capture the imagination, you’ll find every point on this sand and shingle beach affords another spectacular view.

A rare, untamed beauty, Durdle Door beach’s jaw-dropping aesthetics are kept naturally beautiful by the lack of facilities nearby. That means that it’s always best to plan in advance, as the only toilets are in the car park and there are no amenities on the beach itself. Although ideal for sea bathing on calm summer days, there are no lifeguards on duty either, so caution is always advised when the swells start to pick up – especially as the beach shelves deeply in places.

If you are bringing all the pack on holiday with you, you will be pleased to hear that the clifftop paths of the Jurassic Coastline make for some amazing walking opportunities too. And, better still, Durdle Door’s beach is dog-friendly year-round, providing the most incredible backdrop for a game of fetch imaginable!

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