If you’re looking for a fun, active, free family day out in Charmouth this weekend, then your best bet is probably to head to the beach for a spot of fossil hunting. As well as being a lovely picturesque location for a picnic on a warm day, our beach is famous for being one of the best locations to find prehistoric remains in the UK.
Tips for Fossil Hunting in Charmouth
When dedicated fossil hunters set off on a fossil hunt, they will carry a range of tools like a rock hammer and small chisel. If you’re just out for a fun afternoon however, you won’t need anything but a sharp pair of eyes and a little bit of perseverance.
Vast numbers of ammonites and belemites have been found on Charmouth beach, and every year there are more to find. There’s no golden rule for finding fossils, but they tend to be easier to find after periods of stormy weather, when cliffs have been eroded and debris washed onto the beach.
If you do unearth something exciting and want to find out more about it, take it along to the Heritage Coast Centre on Charmouth seafront. The friendly experts there will take a look at the fossil for you and will hopefully be able to tell you what it is. If you have something important, they’ll ask to make a record of it for the Centre (But of course the fossil itself is still yours to take away!)
Charmouth Fossil Walks for Kids
If you want to learn about fossils and maximise your chances of finding some good’uns on the beach, it might be worth considering a guided tour. We offer fossil walks every Wednesday (weather permitting!) during the summer, as part of our Kids Club. It’s £4 per child, and spaces can be limited so it pays to book on arrival!