West Bay

West Bay is a small harbour village in Dorset, England, approximately 2 miles south of the centre of Bridport.


East Beach

Known as Bridport Harbour until 1884, it was renamed "West Bay" by the Great Western Railway company in an apparent effort to develop it into a seaside destination. The railway closed in 1975 but the station has recently been restored and converted into a cafe.

Modern-day West Bay is a "Gateway Town" to the Jurassic Coast, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with the cliffs and sea-bed exposing the Middle Jurassic era to the west and the Lower Jurassic era to the east.

East Beach also marks the western end of Chesil Beach, the longest tombolo in the UK. The pebble shingle that makes up this 18 mile long beach is worn down as it washes its way along the coast from Portland and the stones are at their smallest by the time they reach West Bay.

The Bay is not just popular with geologists and historians though, sunshine draws locals and grockles (tourists) alike to both beaches and the harbourside, piers and promenade make for an excellent short stroll in all but the stormiest weather.

Get in

By plane

The nearest airports are Exeter, approximately 30 miles to the west and Bournemouth, approximately 50 miles to the east.

By train

The nearest train stations are in Maiden Newton (14 miles), Crewkerne (14 miles), Axminster (15 miles), Dorchester (17 miles), Weymouth (18 miles). Connecting bus services are available but infrequent.

By bus

First Western provide two bus services that stop in West Bay:

A (slightly) greater range of bus services are available from nearby Bridport.

By car

The primary road into West Bay is West Bay Road which runs between Bridport and West Bay. It begins at the Crown Roundabout, where the B3157 crosses the A35; it's the southwestern exit between The Crown Inn and Groves Nurseries.

If travelling westwards along the B3157 coastal road from Burton Bradstock towards Briport, turn left into Station Road at the bottom of the hill 585 metres after the exit for Freshwater Caravan Park and 185 meters after the exit for the Bridport and West Dorset Golf Club.

By boat


The harbour has 115 drying moorings with the majority let for private use. There are 15 commercial moorings for either fishing vessels or passenger vessels carrying fewer than 12 people. Visiting fishing boats and commercial vessels can berth by the East Pier. Visiting leisure craft can berth against pontoons. There is a chart of the harbour on Admiralty chart SC3315.

All visitors wishing to visit West Bay by boat should contact the harbour staff when planning their passage to confirm depth available and mooring arrangements.

Get around

The simplest way to move around West Bay is on foot but there are car parks close to most points in the village if walking isn't feasible.


Burton Beach
Burton Bradstock cliffs


Coast path from West Bay towards Eype



River Brit & Riverside Restaurant
The Tea Station



Stay Safe

Go next

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Wednesday, March 30, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.