9 beautiful coastal walks in the UK

Credit: @distant

With nearly 8,000 miles of coastline, the UK has some of the most beautiful and varied coastal scenery in the world. From white sand beaches of the Hebrides to the wildlife havens of Yorkshire’s coastal cliffs, there’s no better way to explore the UK’s coastline than on foot.

If you’ve found yourself searching ‘coastal walks near me’, then the good news is you’re never far from a great coastal walk. In fact, in the UK, you’re never more than 80 miles away from feeling the sea breeze in your hair.

Exploring the coast at walking pace is the perfect way to switch off from the rush of modern life, and switch on to the sights and sounds of the UK’s most beautiful coastal locations.

We reached out to our community to uncover the places for the best UK coastal walks. 


Worm’s Head, Gower

@mike._adventures on Worm’s Head, Gower.

Route: Rhossili village to Worm’s Head tip and back

Distance: 4.5 miles

The Gower Peninsular in South Wales, also known as Penrhyn Gŵyr, was the first designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. A challenging, yet spectacular coastal walk starts from Rhossili village and heads out to the tip of Worm’s Head, a giant dragon  shaped headland.

This tidal island is only accessible 2.5 hours either side of low tide, giving you a 5 hour window to get to the tip and back. This gives the hike a real sense of adventure. 

Mike (@mike._adventures) tells us why he loves this area.

“Worm’s Head is a peninsular that can only be accessed at low tide so you have to pick the correct time of year and keep up with tide times. It feels like a real adventure. It’s incredibly beautiful with its scenic landscape. There’s also a sunflower farm just before Worm’s Head, which is really beautiful. ”


Bempton Cliffs, Yorkshire

Credit: @stacey_leigh88

Route: Bempton village to Bempton Cliffs circular

Distance: 4 miles

Between March and October, around half a million seabirds gather at Bempton Cliffs. It’s one of the UK’s most spectacular wildlife spectacles where you can spot Puffins, Gannets, and Guillemots. 

This circular walk starts in the small village of Bempton and takes you to the RSPB reserve at the dramatic Bempton Cliffs.

Stacey (@stacey_leigh88) tells us why this one is worth a visit.

“For anyone visiting the North East of England, Bempton is a must. A haven for photographers to see thousands of seabirds in their natural habitat, or if you’re a nature buff, like me, who’s a sucker for a good view. The white chalky cliffs are a must see.”


Old Man of Storr, Isle of Skye

Credit: @antonio_gaudencio

Route: A855 car park to Old Man of Storr circular

Distance: 3.4 miles.

There’s good reason this is one of the most popular hikes on the Isle of Skye: panoramic views and dramatic rock formations formed by an ancient colossal volcano. This is a place of legend. The Old Man of Storr is said to be the thumb of a dead giant emerging above ground.

For this hike, start at the car park along the A855 north of Portree then follow a wide path uphill to the Old Man of Storr. This path goes over some rocky, uneven ground, with some scrambling involved. Sturdy footwear is a must.

Antonio (@antonio_gaudencio), an outdoors Photographer, tells us loves the atmosphere here.

“I like to lose myself in landscapes where the only limit is the horizon. I’ve always loved the northern Celtic lands, lands of legends, with their uncertain climate that offers photographers exceptional light. The first time I discovered the landscapes of Scotland, I felt as if I was travelling through a legendary and adventurous film set.”

Embleton Bay, Northumberland

Credit: @distant

Route: Embleton to Craster circular, via Dunston Castle

Distance: 6.4 miles

This is the place to enjoy wide sweeping bays, with few people around. The beaches here are often quiet, in fact you’ll often have them to yourself. This coastal walk starts in Embleton and visits Dunston Castle. You then join the coastal path to Craster, before heading back to Embleton.

Outdoors photographer, Greg (@distant), says this is a charming place to visit.

“Picturesque coastlines, ancient castles, and charming market towns. It’s hard not to fall in love with the natural beauty of Northumberland.”


Freshwater, Isle of Wight

Freshwater, Isle of Wight

Route: Freshwater Bay to The Needles

Distance: 3 miles

Call us biased, but we think the Isle of Wight is packed full of some of the best coastal scenery in the UK. This route starts from the beautiful bay on the doorstep of Rapanui HQ, Freshwater Bay, a great swimming spot with a reef full of marine life. The route to the Needles heads over Tennyson Down, with soaring views out to the English channel, before reaching one of the UK’s most famous natural wonder.

Matt, from the Rapanui team, says this is one of his favourite walks on the Island.

“This coastal walk really does have it all: A good swim spot, amazing views out to sea, and plenty of good snack spots. I love the colours at Tennyson Down, from the chalky white cliffs, to the lush green of the perfect grass and yellow Gorse. It’s soul soothing.”


LLangennith, Gower

Credit: @ellierayer

Route: LLangennith to Rhossili circular

Distance: 4.2 miles

Ok, we may have already picked a walk on the Gower, but the beach at Llangennith is too good to miss. It’s a long, sandy beach that's a favourite for surfers. You can start this walk at a campsite by the beach. At low tide, you can then walk the whole length of the beach towards Worm’s Head, before heading back to the start via Rhossili Down. 

Olympic medallist Ellie Rayer (@ellierayer) told us LLangannith is a special place.

“LLangennith is a complete gem that people don’t really know about so it’s quietly buzzing. The Gower Peninsular is stunning come rain or shine. My favourite walk is over the hill, to Rhossili and out to Worm’s Head when the tide is right… with a pub stop and beach chill to recover afterwards!”


Durdle Door, Dorset

Credit: @davesnowdonphotography

Route: Lulworth Cove to Durdle Door and Ringstead Ba

Distance: 7.2 miles

This is a very popular section of the south coast, and for good reason. The chalk cliffs and green grass make for a stunning palette that soothes the soul. This walk starts and ends at Lulworth cove, then heads over the fields and above the cliffs of White Nothe, and weaves back via Bat's Head, Durdle Door and Man O' War Cove.

Dave (@davesnowdonphotography) sent in this suggestion, saying it’s a place to clear the mind.

“There are fantastic views along the whole path and the continuous presence of the ocean is so good for the mind, body and soul.”


Ilfracombe, Devon

Credit: @kjane_overthehedge

Route: Ilfracombe to Woolacombe (South West Coastal Path)

Distance: 8.3 miles

This section of the South West Coastal path in North Devon is awash with lush and verdant panoramic views. This route starts from Ilfracombe and goes through Lee Bay, before continuing to Bull Point, then across to Morte Point, and finally to Woolacombe, where a great beach can be found.

Kimberley (@kjane_overthehedge) suggests this route, saying this particular view near Ilfracombe is a special one.

“This is a place I’ve visited for many years since childhood. It’s always a pleasure to go back and I particularly love this view. It’s a must.”


Torteval, Guernsey

Credit: @explorefromthedoor

Route: Vaux de Montel circular

Distance: 2.6 miles

The Guernsey coastline is some of the most varied in Britain. This route on the south westerly tip includes quiet coastal paths through fields and woodland.

Guernsey native and outdoors educator, Chris (@explorefromthedoor), tells us Guernsey is an adventurer’s dream.

“Guernsey may be small, but with 42 miles of coastal paths, there is plenty of opportunity for adventure and exploration. The rugged cliffs, coves and caves along the island’s south coast are our family’s favourite stomping ground and a micro-adventurers dream. The coastal terrain, biodiversity and marine environments mean that the possibilities for adventure are almost limitless.”

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