Every Sunday we are going to try as a family to go out exploring more of the beautiful countryside that we now reside so close too in Somerset. This Sunday after looking through Google for places to visit we stumbled across a beach not far from us called Kilve.
Kilve beach is renowned for finding fossils so we thought we would give it a try. Having been to the Jurassic Coast in Dorset before and had no luck finding anything that even remotely resembles a fossil I was a bit sceptical but was happy to go along for a day trip.
I knocked up a quick pack lunch for the 5 of us, grabbed my camera and put the welly’s in the car and off we set on another adventure.
The Journey to Kilve Beach and the Parking
From us to Kilve beach the Sat Nav took us down all the country lanes. Having only moved to Somerset 5 months ago from Surrey we are all still getting used to these narrow country lanes.
Although the lanes did make me feel a bit queasy the views were beautiful. Field upon field of unspoilt beauty with sheep, cows and horses all dotted along and every so often you pass through lovely little villages containing houses with thatched roofs and period stone-built cottages.
We entered into the small picturesque village of Kilve and followed the white hand-painted sign to the beach. We travelled down another beautiful country lane up to the remains of a very old church that was being held up by steel rods. The lane takes you into Kilve beach pay and display car park. It is a small car park and at the time we visited it was very reasonably priced.
Kilve Beach and our Fossil Finds
Next to the car park is an idyllic stream trickling its way down through the banks and off through the fields. There is a little bridge leading to a small hut where the toilets are located. In front are two public footpaths leading across fields of green and up onto the beach. We took the path on the left which lead us up the hill.
Once we had made it to the top we finally set our eyes on the hidden gem that is Kilve Beach. Tucked away in a cove of eroding hills is the unspoilt wonder, full of rock pools and streams and huge rocks. The tide was out when we arrived leaving us with a vast rocky area to explore.
As soon as we set foot on this vast boulder field of a beach we were finding huge fossils imprinted everywhere. The girls were amazed and so ecstatic every time they found one. We were all walking heads down turning over rocks and stones trying to find a bigger and better fossil than the last.
We walked up the beach and found a path leading up a small hill with a little bench at the top looking out over the sea. After all the fossil hunting we decided this would be a great spot for lunch. You will need to bring your own food with you as there are no shops or cafes on Kilve beach.
From Kilve you can see Minehead off to the left and make out the big white tent of Butlins even on a dull grey day and also Wales off in the distance.
After our lunch break we headed back to the beach where the girls discovered tiny shells in abundance which they then decided to switch from fossil hunting to shell collecting.
The girls soon discovered the Limpets when they tried to pick the shells of the rocks with no luck. We had to explain that there were creatures living inside of them that suck on to the rock.
In their search for shells, they discover a few limpets with no shell. It is the first time I had seen this before and when we felt them they were like jelly cubes and were a deep ruby red in colour.
We then trailed off down the beach overshadowed by the huge serrated cliffs. The girls discovered a wide flat part of the beach with no rocks or stones but lovely flat sand. They had great fun running around on what they called ‘quicksand’ as their welly boots were sticking as they ran.
After a few hours of this amazing beach, we headed off to the car already vowing to come back again one day hopefully with warmer weather. We had all Sercombe to the charm and uniqueness of Klive beach. It is so nice to see a beach that has not been spoilt by commercialism with everyone trying to cash in on a natural wonder.
A Bit of Kilve Beach History
However, this was nearly not the case as in 1924 it was discovered that the shale found in the cliffs was rich in oil and Dr Forbes-Leslie founded the Shaline company to start extracting these precious oils. He had a red brick retort built but was unable to raise the rest of the capital to carry on the project. The retort still stands by the car park today as a sorry reminder of what was not meant to be. (source https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kilve)
All in all, we had an amazing day out even with the cold damp day and it only cost us the fuel to get there and a couple of pounds to park. I would highly recommend this beach to anyone looking for a day of exploring and wanting to find some fossils.
Here are my other posts of places to visit in Somerset, UK-
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