I must say that when my son announced happily that it was" just like doing Minecraft" as we explored the shore at Lyme Regis I was somewhat surprised. Having had a terrible time getting him out of the house, we ended up bribing him with an ice cream to leave the beach, some considerable time later!
Here's how you too could create your own Minecraft adventure.
The best beach by far for this activity is the one behind the museum, and towards the cliffs that stretch to Charmouth. I believe this is known as Back Beach. You need to go at LOW TIDE so check first by looking in a local paper for tide times, or use a site such as www.tidetimes.org.uk
Fossils, rock pools and pickings galore are exposed as the tide goes out. You will need wellies, preferably to navigate across wet and slippy slabs of rock.
Let your kids take the lead and navigate you through and it becomes like Minecraft parkour. Try not to fall into the water and rock pools in between.
Then look out for the different stones, rocks and debris left behind. We spotted "redstone", "greystone", brick, "obsidian" and "slime blocks". There are pebbles that look like prismarine, that are shimmery and change colour in and out of the water. Also, there are strange creatures to be found in the rockpools that with a bit of imagination could pass for Minecraft mobs.
You can supplement your treasure hoard with a visit to either of the fossil shops at Lyme, both in the high street, where it is possible to purchase at very reasonable prices samples of quartz, lapis and other minerals that will pass for Minecraft equivalents like tigers eye, which looks like glow stone.
For adults it is also a very pleasant way to spend an afternoon, with the option of a cream tea, pasty or homemade fudge to follow.
Karen lives and works in Bridport Dorset. She is currently working on her third book in the Abbotsbury Series, books for children aged 8-12.