Things to see & do


Frosty leaf © NT/ Katie Archer

Frosty leaf

Join us for a walk this winter and enjoy landscapes at their seasonal best at places we look after.  Spectacular views of the Seven Sisters make for wonderful family wander. If you feel like a longer stroll, join the South Downs Way over the Seven Sisters hills to really stretch your legs. For a more secluded walk, venture inland at Birling Gap or Crowlink and enjoy the crisp winter sunshine.  A perfect spot to get in the mood for Christmas on a festive ramble, then enjoy a hot drink in our cafe and take a look at our fantastic shop.

Fossil hunting

A beautiful fossilised shell © National Trust

A beautiful fossilised shell

From Birling Gap car park, head down the steps to the beach for an excellent spot to take a glimpse into the past.  The whole family can hunt for fossils in the chalk falls on the beach, this is a great time of year to uncover hidden treasures.  Grab a tracker pack from the visitor centre and start your detective work.  The best time of day to look is at low tide, so check out the tide times before you set out.  We would love to see any fantastic finds so please e-mail us a photo of any special discoveries to


Birling Gap is one of the best spots to surf in the South East © National Trust

Birling Gap is one of the best spots to surf in the South East

With a south-west-facing beach, Birling Gap is one of the best spots to surf in the South East. Surfers are always welcome and our car park is open all day all year round (free parking for members).  It's a great place to enjoy stunning views whilst you're waiting to catch a wave, and if you want to warm up after a day on the waves why not visit to our tea-room for a hot drink and a well-earned bite to eat?

Beachy Head and beyond

Beachy Head © Alexandra Bosly/National Trust

Beachy Head

Birling Gap is a wonderful gateway to the wider South Downs, and is a great place to kick off a visit to this amazing part of the country.  So why not extend your visit and check out the nearby landmarks of Beachy Head and East Dean village.  Both are within easy walking distance of Birling Gap, and offer a great opportunity to discover some hidden spots and national treasures.  The historic seaside town of Eastbourne is a short drive away and offers an array of museums, galleries and shopping opportunities.

What's on?

There is more to do at Birling Gap than just visit. Wonderful winter walks, fossil hunts and sunset suppers are just a selection of some of our events.

November highlights

Gorse in flower © Nigel Hester

Take in the autumnal beauty and be inspired on a bracing cliff top walk this month.  The gorse is still in flower and provides a vital source of winter nectar for birds and insects through the cold winter months.  A local saying suggests that 'gorse stops flowering when kissing is out of fashion', so luckily the coconut fragrance can be smelled all year round.

December highlights

Watch out for fieldfares and other birds on our estates this winter © Andy Knight

At night time wrap up warm to gaze at the stars; the clear dark skies at Birling Gap and Crowlink are ideal for this activity. During the shorter days the hidden valleys and coombes attracts flocks of redwing and fieldfare that feast on the fruits of hawthorn and orange wayfaring trees, whilst the creeping tendrils of black bryony are festooned garlands of ruby red berries.

50 Things

Here at Birling Gap we've counted 33 things for you to tick off your 50 things to do before you're 11 ¾ list. They include rock pooling, kite flying and bug hunting. Have a go, you may even find more than we did.