King Charles III England Coast Path – South East
From the Thames Estuary to Southampton, passing stunning wildlife and culture
Find useful facts and learn more about the King Charles III England Coast Path in the South East below. Select the blue tabs below for more details.
The King Charles III England Coast Path is a new walking route that will follow the entire coast of England. For the first time people will have the right of access around all our open coast. This includes – where appropriate – any land, other than the trail itself, which forms part of the Coastal Margin. The path is being opened in sections but will, when completed, be the longest coastal path in the world. It will be a National Trail.
At the moment you can only walk some sections. The open sections are shown on the interactive map. As new sections open they will be added to the website maps. You can also see open sections and find out about progress on other sections on the gov.uk website.
In the South East, the following sections are open to the public:
You can find out more about each of these sections on the Route Description page.
The King Charles III England Coast Path has been created under new legislation. In parts it follows existing public rights of way, but many sections are completely new and use a new right of access. Because of this it has different rules to public rights of way. Please make sure you obey any on-site signage.
In most places you don’t have to stick to the path. Land to the seaward side of the trail, shaded pink on Ordnance Survey Maps is Coastal Margin. Much of this land has public access. Although you have the right to explore away from the path please use common sense – the King Charles III England Coast Path includes land that is steep, unstable and not readily accessible. Just because the map says you can go there doesn’t mean it is safe to do so.
The England Coast will be the longest coastal walking route in the world when it is complete.
The King Charles III England Coast Path is much more than just a path. It has been created under new legislation. It allows access to the coast including the cliff tops and the beach. Everything to the seaward side of the path is designated as Coastal Margin. This gives you the right to walk off the path. You can see where this land is – it is shaded pink on the 1:25,000 Ordnance Survey maps.
But, although the land is shaded pink, you don’t have the right to walk everywhere – the Coastal Margin includes land:
In some places the existing National Trail, or part of it, will become part of the King Charles III England Coast Path as well, for example the South West Coast Path, Norfolk Coast Path and the coastal part of the Cleveland Way. In this case you will see signs on the ground for the existing Trail, but also some ‘part of the King Charles III England Coast Path’ signs.
There are benefits to the existing National Trails becoming part of the King Charles III England Coast Path as it makes it much quicker for the Trail managers to resolve any problems due to erosion. It also means that you are able to walk in the Coastal Margin.
You might find in some places the line of the existing National Trail is different to the line of the King Charles III England Coast Path – in that case you can choose which one to take.
Over 1,000 miles of the King Charles III England Coast Path completed as Ramsgate to Whitstable stretch officially opens 25th October 2023
This autumn sees the opening of a new easy-to-follow walking route in north east Kent between Ramsgate and Whitstable. This latest stretch of the King Charles III England Coast Path is 25.2-mile (40.57km) long, passing dramatic chalk cliffs, sandy beaches and popular seaside resorts.
The trail includes a 19-mile section of coastline around the Isle of Thanet that is the longest continuous stretch of coastal chalk in Britain and a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). The stretch also passes the North East Kent Marine Protected Area, which is one of the best sites in Europe for wintering birds, chalk reef marine life and sandy beaches.
Jim Seymour, Natural England Deputy Director said:
“It’s really exciting that this spectacular coastline with it chalk cliffs, wintering birds and popular seaside towns, takes the completed path to 1,018 miles.
At a time when the benefits of connecting with nature are clearer than ever, it’s fabulous that so much of the King Charles III England Coast Path is open for people to enjoy.
This stretch should also benefit the local economy in north east Kent by bringing walkers past the many local businesses on this route; to shop, for refreshments and to stay.”
Visit our News Page for the latest interesting and exciting news on the King Charles III England Coast Path.
You can find further details, watch videos and browse photos on the trail's route description page
Discover something new to explore every step of the way, from natural icons and historic attractions to coastal towns and villages…
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