South West England

Kimmeridge Ledges

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Kimmeridge is a location that’s at its best, photographically, at low tide or when the tide is half out. This is because the rock ledges that stretch out into the sea and provide foreground interest are covered at high tide and there is much less of the coast to explore. To get there, take the A351 from Wareham towards Swanage and turn right after about a mile (signposted to Creech, Steeple and Kimmeridge)follow the twisty road for about five miles up and over the hill then turn right (signposted to Kimmeridge and ‘To the sea’). If you miss the turning from the A351, just continue to Corfe and turn right just before the castle, it’ll take you to the same place. If you go during the daytime, you’ll need to stop and pay the car parking attendant at the little hut before you get to the bay. From the large car park, head left and follow the path and road down to the small quay. You can then follow a small path that takes you down to the foot of the cliff and the rocky beach. Walk along the beach and you’ll find the ledges. Watch the tide as it comes in quite fast and irregularly across the flat rocks. As it’s a south-facing location, it’s good for sunrise and sunset, except during high summer when the sunrise is further round to the north.
The main thing to be aware of on Kimmeridge Ledges is the tide and sea condition. High tide can easily reach the base of the cliffs, cutting you off. While a southerly wind and any sort of swell can mean that the waves will be driven on shore, making it impossible (and a little foolhardy) to stay on the ledges. So, if you are planning a trip, make sure that you know when the high tide is due, take note of the sea conditions and most of all, don’t get stranded!

Kimmeridge, Dorset
Kimmeridge, Dorset