Coastal walks: beautiful and scenic routes

Sandymouth beach at low tide

A bracing sea breeze, waves crashing against the rocks and soaring seabirds are just some of the reasons we love to walk by the sea. This unforgettable selection of coastal walking trails has it all – golden sands, clifftop views, dazzling wildlife and fascinating historical stories.

A walk by the sea is special in all sorts of ways. Coastal places often remind us of childhood and are where we make new memories with friends and family. Your efforts are always rewarded with an incredible view, a wildlife sighting or the discovery of an unusual rock formation. 

We've teamed up with our partner Cotswold Outdoor to create a new mini-series to get you inspired and prepared for your next coastal adventure.

In this article: 

Explore the countryside with our video series

In our four-part series, wildlife presenter Lizzie Daly explores how we look after the countryside so walkers can enjoy the view and nature can thrive. Throughout the series, she joins our rangers on a wide variety of walking trails that take in mountain summits, coastal landscapes, urban areas and accessible routes suitable for wheelchairs, pushchairs and mobility aids.

Video

Go on a coastal walk with Lizzie Daly

You're invited to join us and wildlife presenter Lizzie Daly on a refreshing coastal walk at Sandymouth in Cornwall. Our new video will transport you to this wild stretch of coastline, where you’ll enjoy clifftop views, spot seabirds and discover how we work to stem the tide of plastic pollution.

Discover more walks with Lizzie Daly Take to the trails

Find a coastal walk near you

Smugglers, shipwrecks, battles, storms – our shores have so many stories to tell. Whether you’re looking for a clifftop hike, or gentle ramble along the beach, here are some of the best routes to explore.

The view from Hawker's Hut, on the coast near Morwenstow.

A coastal walk from Sandymouth to Duckpool, Cornwall 

Did you like what you saw in the video? Why not take the same trail? This invigorating walk will take you from Sandymouth beach, north of Bude, along the scenic coastal path to Duckpool before returning along the same route. With its arresting clifftop views, soaring seabirds and colourful plant life, this walk is unforgettable. Look out for fulmars, gulls and kestrels along the way.

" It’s clear that there is something special about the coast. It's a place to escape, that can allow people to boost their mood, relax and sleep longer."
- Eleanor Ratcliffe, environmental psychologist

East of England

North of England

Coast and beaches we recommend

near Kingsbridge, Devon

A long sweep of golden sand and rock pools, with crystal clear waters and iconic rock archway

Open today
View all opening times 

Rhosili, Swansea

Beautiful and breathtaking views on the Gower peninsula

Partially open today
View all opening times 

Morston, Norfolk

Spectacular wildlife and uninterrupted views of beautiful coastline

Partially open today
View all opening times 

Top tips for a coastal walk

We've teamed up with our exclusive walking partner Cotswold Outdoor to make sure you're well prepared for a day of walking near the sea. Darren Johns, assistant store manager of the Cotswold Outdoor store in Truro, shares his top tips for getting the most out of walking at coastal places. 

Our work with Cotswold Outdoor

As our exclusive walking partner, Cotswold Outdoor supports our work to look after special outdoor places for everyone to enjoy. Cotswold Outdoor gives us funding to help care for walking trails so more people can access the countryside. A proportion of the discount they offer our members and supporters also goes back into vital conservation work.

Plastic pollution threatens coastal wildlife

Keeping the coast clean 

We all love escaping to the sea. But the nature that coastal places connect us with is constantly under threat from plastic pollution. A swathe of plastic rubbish gets washed up on the shores of Sandymouth beach in Cornwall every week. Thanks to our friends at Keep Britain Tidy, running this year's Great British September Clean, a large amount of this waste is taken away from the beach and recycled. Members of the local community also help us move the litter to the top of the beach so it’s easier to collect. Would you like to do your bit for the coastal places you love? Join thousands of others by making a promise to help nature and wildlife thrive.

We need your support

Footpaths allow us to access the landscapes we love but looking after them is tough and costly work. Remote locations, rough terrain and poor weather conditions often mean that it can take a full day to repair about two metres of stone-pitched footpath in an upland area. And at a cost of up to £180 per metre, it's expensive too. 

  • £4 could repair and maintain one metre of a coastal path
  • £25 could buy a tonne of stone needed to surface paths and prevent erosion from rainfall
  • £50 could pay for two minutes of helicopter flying time to move bags of stones to the paths that need fixing

Your support is more important than ever as we come to terms with the impact of the coronavirus - thank you.

Sunset over the beach at Dunwich Heath

Help look after the places you love 

With your help, we can continue carrying out vital work to restore footpaths and make sure future generations can enjoy the beauty of coastal places. Your support means more now than ever.