125 million years ago, the Isle of Wight was a dinosaur hotspot. Welcome… to Jurassic Island.
What is it that fascinates us about dinosaurs? Is it the very mystery of life on Earth, that these ancient beasts hint at our small place within a 13-billion-year-old universe? Or is it just that they look really cool? Whatever it is, from Chris Pratt motorbiking with raptors, to Barney, dinomania has always dominated a special place at the heart of pop culture. With the latest installment of the Jurassic World franchise primed to roar into theatres, we take a look at the Isle of Wight, which the Natural History Museum has declared, ‘the dinosaur capital of Britain’.
Over 25 species of dinosaurs have been found on the Isle of Wight, and more are being found all the time. The island’s coast erodes at a rate of 10 metres every year, regularly unearthing a host of prehistoric fossils. “Dinosaur fossils are still found on a regular basis in the cliffs and quarries of the UK,” NHM’s Dr Paul Barrett says, “and many more surprises are likely to be waiting in the rocks”. One of said surprises was found by 9-year-old Daisy Morris, who had a species of flying dinosaur named after her when she found the first ever fossil of its kind. The newly discovered species was named Vectidraco daisymorrisae, (vectidraco meaning ‘dragon from the Isle of Wight’, and daisymorrisae paying tribute to Daisy Morris).
Of course, there is much more to the Isle of Wight than merely its former reptilian roomies. Nicknamed ‘the garden isle’, this South Coast treasure boasts gorgeous countryside and coastline, soaring cliffs and secluded beaches. While you may not unearth a new species of dino during your visit, experiencing the Isle of Wight is a discovery of its own.
Excursions to the Isle of Wight are regularly available from Netley Waterside House. If you are interested in visiting the Isle of Wight as part of your Revitalise holiday, please call our friendly Bookings Team on 0303 303 0145 or email at email@example.com