Route Description

The England Coast Path is opening in sections. The open sections are described here. The path aims to stay as close to the coast as possible. In many places that means you will be walking right alongside the coast. In some places the path heads inland, usually only for short distances. The open sections of the path are well signed, look out for the distinctive acorn waymarkers. Away from towns and villages you will usually find the path has a natural, unmade surface, some areas will get muddy in wet weather. Closer to where people live you might find smooth surfaced paths, and in towns and villages you may be walking on promenades or pavements alongside roads.

Maldon to Salcott, Essex

40 miles from London, this part of the Blackwater Estuary boasts big skies, was visited by Vikings, Romans and WW1 pilots.  Vast expanses of intertidal salt marsh and mudflats are breeding and grazing grounds to dark-bellied Brent goose, little tern and ringed plover amongst many other waders and wildfowl, native oysters and golden samphire.

In the historic maritime town of Maldon you can take a trip on a Thames sailing barge or visit Promenade Park the largest waterside park for family fun in Essex.  It’s also home to the culinary renowned Maldon Sea Salt company.

The route passes by Heybridge known for homing the final stage of the Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation Canal, historically used to transport coal and wood to the inland town of Chelmsford.

Goldhanger, thought to get its Nordic name from the Corn Marigold growing in surrounding grassland, was first mentioned in the Domesday Book.  On the path from the crest of the seawall nearby you can experience panoramic views over to Osea Island.

Tollesbury nestles between Tollesbury Fleet and the RSPB reserve at Old Hall Marshes is ideal for bird watching.  The town itself hosts an impressive marina that is a boating centre for all the family. And Salcott is named after the huts that stored the salt harvested in the area since the Iron Age.

Hopton on Sea to Sea Palling, Norfolk

This 21 mile (34km) section of the coast path offers a contrast of shady trees, dunes and beaches with lively seaside towns, entertainment and maritime heritage.

From Sea Palling, a new section of the coast path allows walkers to enjoy a quieter section of the coastline for the first time before entering the wildlife haven of Winterton-Horsey Dunes SSSI.

In contrast, the summer beaches from Hemsby to California are bustling with people in deckchairs, enjoying ice-creams and building sandcastles. During autumn and winter, you may have this whole stretch of beach to yourself.

The coast path follows the line of a disused railway and soon descends on to the beach at Caister-on-Sea, passing in front of the lifeboat station. The old lifeboat shed is now a museum where visitors can learn about the station’s proud heritage.

Great Yarmouth is a town of contrasts from the Golden Mile’s energetic hub of entertainment to the working port and quays, busy market and a wealth of historic buildings and museums. The industrial maritime heart of Norfolk’s coast soon leads to a beautiful beach as the trail continues from Gorleston to Hopton-on-Sea, perfect as a sunrise summer stroll or a blustery autumn ramble.

Sea Palling to Weybourne, Norfolk

The coast is beautiful here, with long sandy beaches. There’s history to explore, 800,000 year old flint tools have been found here and the famous West Runton Elephant Fossil. Or you can enjoy the villages, walks, and of course try Cromer crab.