An added reason for visiting stunning Dorset.

Dorset, an area of outstanding beauty, 140km of beautiful coastline, rolling hills, sandstone cottages and tempting tea rooms has long attracted visitors from all over the world. Home to authors such as Jane Austen and Thomas Hardy, travellers still flock to see the real life settings of 'Far from the Madding Crowd', 'Jude the Obscure' and 'The Mayor of Casterbridge'. Dorset is Thomas Hardy’s Wessex and the town of Dorchester his 'Casterbridge'.

Non literary fans can simply enjoy the award winning heritage coast with some of the finest sandy beaches to be found in the British Isles and inland, spectacular countryside and unspoilt villages. But now Dorset has a new attraction to offer.

A skull belonging to one of the largest, scariest ‘sea monsters’ ever unearthed is being unveiled to the public, reports the BBC. The 155-million-year-old fossil is of a pliosaur, top predators of the oceans which lived during the Jurassic and Cretaceous Periods. It is soon to be on show at the Dorset County Museum with Sir David Attenborough carrying out the opening ceremony.

Palaeontologist Richard Forrest said, ‘...this skull is 95% complete, and probably one of the largest and certainly one of the most well-preserved and complete pliosaurs ever found anywhere in the world.’ Described as a crocodile on steroids, its eye sockets are the size of a melon and it probably measured between 15-18m from tip to tail. That's enormous: the kids will love it!

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