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About 'Fossil Beach' & Fossil Hunting

Fossil Beach isn't just one location in the UK. We collect fossils from several prime locations, either picked from the beach itself, or gently prised from the soft shale in cliff falls.

We are keen to preserve the environment, and do not damage the cliffs we explore to find these remains from long ago. (Please also see our Environmental Policy for more information).

For this reason, some of our specimens are ‘beach polished’ fragments - smoothed over thousands of years by the breaking ocean waves. However, we believe that all fossils, whether beach eroded or perfectly preserved, have a charm and fascination for young and old alike.

If you are not lucky enough to live near to a fossil-rich coastline, you can visit our fossil shop and purchase a piece of pre-history for yourself. Fossils make great gifts, and our fossils are nicely packaged with a full explanation of what they are.

If you want to make it more fun, you can try our 'Fossil Beach' game, and search for fossils on our virtual beach.

If you want to look for fossils yourself, read below for our safe guide to fossil hunting.

Fossil hunting location

The 'Fossil Beach' Guide To Fossil Hunting

No fossil hammers

Ok, before we go any further - STOP RIGHT THERE!

Put that fossil hammer down - you don't need it! Why? We'll explain.

'Fossil Beach' has it's name because that's where the fossils come from: the beach - not the cliffs.

If the rock that contains the fossil is so hard you need to chip it out with a fossil hammer, it is most likely that you won't be able to get the fossil out, and if you can you will damage the fossil.

The time you spent with your hammer would have been much better spent combing the shoreline, particularly where smaller stones and shells gather. Let the sea do the work for you, and pick up fossils from the beach that the sea has already removed.

ALL of the fossils for sale on Fossil Beach were found on the beach, or in cliff falls (away from the cliffs).

We believe that the best tool for finding fossils is YOUR OWN PAIR OF EYES and nothing else.

We keep away from the cliffs when we go fossil hunting - and so should you.

Here's why:

  • If you see cliff falls, it means that the cliffs are unstable and could fall on you. And we are talking thousands of tons of rock here, so you wouldn't tell the tale afterwards.
  • Do not collect fossils at the base of cliffs.
  • If you are looking for fossils in a cliff fall (which can be a good place to find them), keep away from the main cliff face.
  • Do not climb on cliff falls or on the cliffs themselves.
  • Watch the tide - it is safer and more fruitful to collect when the tide is going out. If the tide is coming in, ensure you can always see your escape route, and give yourself plenty of time to leave the area before the waves stop you from getting back to safety.
  • And don't forget - leave that fossil hammer at home!

Links To Other Fossil, Geology & Paleontology Web Sites

Young boy on a beach looking for fossils