Dinosaur Isle - Discover Experience Encounter
Upper Greensand at Gore Cliff

Field Trip Localities

Yaverland beach

Yaverland beach

The coast between Yaverland and Culver Cliff forms the northern end of Sandown Bay. The cliffs expose a sequence of Cretaceous strata (123 to 90 million years old) containing many different fossils, which are washed out onto the beach. These include occasional pieces of dinosaur bone, fossilised oyster shells, water snails and fossilised wood. You will see and handle most types of sedimentary rock on this beach, including clay, mudstone, sandstone and chalk. Unfortunately we cannot use this beach if the tide is in. This sandy beach is easy to walk on, but access is via a short set of steps. It is just 10 minutes walk away from Dinosaur Isle. There are public toilets nearby. This is a popular location for our public fossil walks - please see our Events webpage for further details.

All-terrain buggy at SandownDinosaur Isle now has an all-terrain beach wheelchair ('beach buggy'), with large flotation-type tyres which can be used on Yaverland beach. Pupils will need to be capable of supporting their own backs, and will need to be capable of moving down the short flight of steps to the beach.

This chair is an enormous improvement on the previous indoor chairs we have used in the past. If you think you may need to use the chair please let us know. The chair is one of three purchased through Aim High for Disabled Children funding. Two other chairs are located elsewhere on the Island should the need arise for more than one chair.

The chair has a removable back board and has optional seat and feet belts. The leg support can be adjusted through a number of angled settings. It can be pushed easilly over soft sand.

The chairs are available for hire by Island children for use on the Isle of Wight. Contact us here on (01983) 404344 for Dinosaur Isle's chair, or contact the Isle of Wight Short Breaks section via the IW Council switchboard on (01983) 821000 and ask for Kelly Quinn (Short Breaks Co-ordinator) for enquiries about the Short Break scheme, including hire of one of the other chairs.

St. Catherine's Point

St Catherine's

This beach at the southern tip of the Island is composed of sandstone, chalk and chert boulders (110 to 90 million years old) which are rich in fossils, including ammonites and shells. Formed during ancient landslips, it is a very beautiful area to collect fossils from, and can be accessed even at high tide. St Catherine’s Point is located approximately 40 minutes away by coach. The beach itself is approximately 15 minutes walk downhill from the drop-off point at The Buddle Inn. At least 25 minutes should be allowed for the climb back. There are no public toilets at St. Catherine’s Point.

Shanklin beach


This beach is approximately 15 minutes away by coach. Like Yaverland, it can only be used on a falling tide. Sandstone boulders on the beach contain fossilised shells and fossilised wood is common. The tidal conditions for the time of your booking will affect your fieldtrip location. Please call us to find the best time to come if you want to visit Yaverland or Shanklin beaches. For convenience, coaches are recommended for all trips except Yaverland Beach.

Brook and Compton Bays

Compton Bay

This is a new site for schools. It is located on the south-west side of the Island near Brook, not far from Freshwater.  The beach and cliffs are comprised of similar rocks to those at Yaverland, but here there are the oldest rocks on the Island at about 126 million years of age.  Numerous large sandstone boulders record the footprints of giant dinosaurs that previously roamed the area in the early Cretaceous.  This is an ideal site if a school wishes to follow their field trip with a visit to sites in the west Wight, eg the Needles Battery, Tennyson Down or Alum Bay.  It would also be possible to visit this site on one day and the museum on another. A coach will be required to get to the site.  

Site risk assessments

Risk Assessments are available on our Useful Information page.  Teachers will need to produce their own assessments prior to a visit.  We recommend a free pre-visit.


Dinosaur Isle blinking eye Educational Services Activities Fossil Guide - what are fossils? Field trip localities Activity Worksheets Health and Safety Useful information
and Downloads
Earth's Timeline FAQ's (on the Dinosaurs page)TestimonialsNewsletters Dinosaur Isle Shop

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Accredited Museum

Quality Assured Visitor Attraction

Chamber of Commerce

Isle of Wight Council


Dinosaur Isle,
Culver Parade,
Isle of Wight
PO36 8QA

Tel: +44 (0)1983 404344
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