Skip to content
Brass Point looking east to Flagstaff Point and Belle Tout at Seven Sisters, East Sussex
Brass Point looking east to Flagstaff Point and Belle Tout at Seven Sisters, East Sussex | © National Trust Images/David Sellman

Clifftop walk from Birling Gap to Exceat

Experience iconic clifftop views of the Seven Sisters coastline and discover the history of this walk to Exceat and the Seven Sisters Country Park.

Total steps: 6

Total steps: 6

Start point

Birling Gap café, BN20 0AB

Step 1

Starting at the Birling Gap Café, walk along the side of the building, go up the few steps and turn left at the private road, heading uphill along the South Downs Way. At the top of the road, turn left through the gate that has a signpost for the South Downs Way. You are now walking over Went Hill, the first of the Seven Sisters. Go through another gate

Step 2

Following the path now bearing slightly right, walk up the next hill, where you will pass the Robertson memorial stone. At the top of the hill, Bailey’s Brow, look out for humps and hollows in the landscape around you, including the three ancient tumuli on Bailey’s Hill. Continue straight on, following undulating downland over Flat Brow. Due to the erosion experienced on this coast line could this become the eighth Sister?

Step 3

At the top of the next hill, Flagstaff, a Sarsen stone commemorates the purchase of Crowlink for the benefit of the public. In 1927 Arthur Beckett and Colonel Mathias of the Sussex Downsmen saved the area from a building syndicate by raising funds to buy the land.

Step 4

As you look out to sea it is easy to imagine the many ships that have been wrecked along this part of the coastline over the centuries. From Brass Point down into Crowlink it is possible to see the remains of the 633-ton Coonatto on the beach at low tide – the ship ran aground at Crowlink Gap in 1876 and luckily most of the crew and cargo were recovered.

Step 5

Haven Brow is the last of the Seven Sisters hills, from here the path heads right then gradually left down the side of the steep river cliff. Once you reach the concrete path at the Seven Sisters Country Park you can either turn left for the beach or right along the track towards the A259.

Step 6

Two Second World War pill boxes can be seen in the Cuckmere Valley. One is visible on Exceat Hill, just to the left of the path among small trees nearing the end of the walk. You will then reach the A259 road at Exceat where there is a visitor centre, tea-room and toilets. From here you will be able to catch the 13x bus back to Birling Gap or the 12 to East Dean.

End point

Seven Sisters Country Park, Exceat, BN25 4AD

Trail map

Birling Gap Clifftop walk map
Birling Gap Clifftop walk map | © Crown copyright and database rights 2013 Ordnance Survey

You made it

Share your experience

More near here

A view from above the beach at Birling Gap, East Sussex

Birling Gap walk from the Tiger Inn 

This circular walk allows you to enjoy great views over the downs and Easy Sussex coast and feel a sense of the landscape's long history.

DistanceMiles: 3 (km: 4.8)
Walkers on the clifftop on the South Downs Way footpath at Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters, East Sussex with a view of the sea in the background

Bounding up to Belle Tout at Birling Gap 

Enjoy a relaxing stroll up to Mad Jack Fuller's folly on this circular walk which offers breathtaking views of the Seven Sisters and Beachy Head lighthouse.

DistanceMiles: 2 (km: 3.2)

Get in touch

East Dean, near Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN20 0AB

Our partners

Cotswold Outdoor

We’ve partnered with Cotswold Outdoor to help everyone make the most of their time outdoors in the places we care for.

Visit website 

You might also be interested in

People and dogs on wet sand at the beach, with chalk cliffs behind, at Birling Gap, East Sussex

Exploring Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters 

Discover what to see and do at Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters. Fossil hunt on the beach, walk on the historic downland or enjoy the views as you spot birds.

Visitor carrying a tray of coffee and cake in the cafe at Llanerchaeron, Wales

Eating and shopping at Birling Gap 

Find out about eating and shopping at Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters. Stop for refreshments with a view and browse for local souvenirs in the cliff-top shop.

A group of people in a hiking group are being guided on a hike by rangers at Marsden Moor, West Yorkshire

Cotswold Outdoor: our exclusive walking partner 

Find out more about the National Trust’s ongoing partnership with Cotswold Outdoor as our exclusive walking partner.

Winter sun in the woods at Petworth House and Park, West Sussex

Walking in Sussex 

Explore coastal paths, open parkland and countryside teeming with wildlife on these top walks in Sussex.

A group of hikers exploring a hilly landscape on a sunny winters day.


This National Walking Month, explore some of the finest landscapes in our care on coastal paths, accessible trails, woodland walks and everything in between. Find the best places to walk near you.

A visitor carrying a backpack and walking along a footpath at Divis and the Black Mountain with stone walls either side, the countryside visible in the background.

Follow the Countryside Code 

Help to look after National Trust places by observing a few simple guidelines during your visit and following the Countryside Code.

An aerial view of an adult and baby walking a dog along a path at Baggy Point, Devon

Staying safe at National Trust places 

The special places in National Trust care sometimes come with a few risks for visitors, be it coastline or countryside. Find out how to keep safe throughout your visits.