A walk at St Abbs Head

I am happiest walking in the hills or at the coast, walking on the beach, beach combing, taking photos of the sea and just watching the changing waters and sky. Either makes me feel good and at one with nature and the elements. We are lucky that we can be at the coast in just less than an hour, either at the River Forth estury or the coast of East Lothian. Once we'd closed the nursery for winter we planned a few days out to have a bit of a holiday and time off. We chose a particularly lovely day to walk along the coast at St Abbs Head, it was sunny and unseasonably warm for the beginning of November. We even had our picnic outside after the walk. 

Looking along the coast from the beginning of our walk

St Abbs is a nature reserve run by the National Trust for Scotland. It is perfect for fresh sea air and rugged coastal scenery with Eyemouth and Coldingham nearby for refreshements and more beaches and harbours. It gives you the feeling of being somewhere really wild and remote, yet it’s just off the A1. For bird lovers you can spend hours in the summer months watching the thousands of seabirds who nest in the high cliffs and away from the cliffs a carpet of wildflowers spreads out among the grassland. There is a well maintained carpark, cafe in the summer months and a lovely gallery at the beginning of the path to the nature reserve.
There were plenty fishing boats out just off the coast

Looking back to St Abbs Village

It's a long way down!

Most of the paths are over the short, sheep cropped grass, so good walking footwear is essential and there are a few steep bits and long drops to the sea! We walked up to the lighthouse and then back by the loch, a walk of about two hours, depending how often you stop to take photographs or just to admire the view. Part of the walk back after the lighthouse is on the access road, so an easy bit after the walk up to the light house. It is a walk of many parts, coastal cliff tops, grass land, quiet access tarmac road and a path along side the loch.

Does anyone else think this lookslike a dragon?

Rona and Bracken enjoying a warm, sunny November day

The Lighthouse Keeper's cottage

The Lighthouse itself site below the other buildings on the cliff sitting out into the sea 300 feet above the waves. Painted in white and yellow the buildings are startlingly bright on a sunny day amongst the green of the surrounding grassland. You can read more about the light house at St Abbs Head here.

The Light House at St Abbs

A trio of happy holiday makers

Lichens on the rocks

There was still plenty flowers on the gorse along the roadside on the way down to the loch

Looking north to Berwick Law

After walking down the road from the light house we took the path that runs along the south side of the loch. This small path winds its way amongst tall reeds and then small trees, hawthorn, willow and oak before emerging back onto the grassland beside the sea. There were a few ducks and swans on the loch, but that wa sthe only bird life we saw all day.

An abandoned boathouse on the shore of the loch

Looking back along the loch

Now I could bore you all night long with all the wave photos I took, but I've managed to contain myself to six, hmmmmm. I love trying to capture the movement and light of water and sky.












After our walk we fetched our picnic from the car and made use of one of the picnic tables outside the gallery. We enjoyed some homemade pumkin soup, crackers, cheese and the lovely apple chutney I made from the nursery apples. Coffee and biscuits finished off our picnic before we headed towards home.

David enjoying cheese! No surprises there

The delicious apple chutney

Pumpkin soup

On the way home we stopped off to walk down to the tiny harbour at Cove. Next to the carpark, looking over the sea is this stunning and evocative sculpture. Given that the figures are at most 12cm or so high, it certainly is a beautiful thing to commemorate lost souls at sea. You can read more about Cove and the disaster that this sculpture represents here Cove.







The harbour at Cove, reaches by a tunnel through the cliff



It feels like nothing has changed in a century




This is a lovely walk with so many different views, well worth doing if you are in the area. Coldingham Bay and Eyemouth, both just to the south are worth exploring too.

Why not have a look at other places we've walked and visited on our Places to Walk and visit page


#stabbshead #coastalwalk #nationaltrustforscotland #coveharbour #walking #dogwalks



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