A west Dorset village has topped a global list of places to visit over winter.

Charmouth has been crowned the best winter beach in the world to visit by the renowned Lonely Planet Travel Guide.

The list of nine locations puts the beach, nestled along the Jurassic Coast, top of the pile with its fossil hunting a top attraction.

Lonely Planet describes it as ‘not the warmest beach’ but that people hunting for fossils ‘will be happy to forget about taking a dip’ as they scour the beach looking for a prehistoric relic or two.

A warning to not dig straight into the rock face is also mentioned as visitors are told to only hunt for relics along the shore.

The local community is also happy to welcome visitors looking to cross the beach off their bucket list, and is encouraging visitors to spend time  in the village too.

Charmouth Parish Council clerk, Lisa Tuck, said: “Charmouth beach has a natural unspoilt charm which is even more stunning in the winter. 

“There is ample parking within metres of the beach and the Heritage Coast Centre, situated right on the foreshore, is a wealth of information and advice for people wanting to look for the fossils which are synonymous with the Jurassic Coast.

“The community is friendly and welcoming and there are a variety of shops and businesses at the foreshore and in the village itself.”

In topping the list, Charmouth triumphed over some exotic far-flung beaches.

In particular, the geothermal activity of Hot Water Beach on New Zealand’s Coromandel Peninsula where you can sink into the natural hot pools in the sand. 

Oregon’s Cannon Beach on the United States’ Pacific coast and its unusual rock formation and horse riding also failed to knock Charmouth off its perch.

A South Korean beach in Busan is also highly recommended for its servings of local eateries that remain open during the winter months.

Beaches from France, Iceland, Ireland, Canada and Norway complete the list.

To find out more about which beaches Charmouth beat to the top spot visit www.lonelyplanet.com/articles/the-best-beaches-for-cold-weather

If you want to learn more about what there is to do on Charmouth beach and the surrounding area, you can visit https://charmouth.org/