Best bird watching trails in East Sussex, England

545 Reviews
Explore the most popular bird watching trails in East Sussex with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.
Map of bird watching trails in East Sussex, England
Top trails (39)
#1 - Cuckmere Valley and Seven Sisters Circular
South Downs National Park
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Length: 3.9 mi • Est. 1 h 50 m
Great trail with lots to see and do in this part of the South Downs National Park. The number 12 bus goes from Brighton to Eastbourne so you don’t have to walk loops, you can get the bus back if you’re not sure how far you can manage. The Seven Sisters (the grassy hills with the chalky cliffs at the water's edge) are the best part about this trail. It is a pretty easy hike except for the short steep scramble up the Seven Sisters and is always a windy walk as it's so exposed. Lots of alternative trails available within sight, so this is a good area for all levels of hikers. Show more
#2 - Bewl Water Circular
High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
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Length: 13 mi • Est. 6 h 13 m
Fantastic route for walkers and bikers alike. Pretty easy terrain as there is only one major incline with several descents but mostly it is rolling hills. The challenge is more in the distance (for walkers). A large portion is on road but it is very quiet with hardly any traffic, usually. If you take a slight detour it includes a lovely country pub, and it is also possible to do the trail anti clockwise so that the hilly part is at the start if you prefer.Show more
#3 - Nevill Crest and Gun and Broadwater Warren
Broadwater Warren Nature Reserve
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Length: 3.8 mi • Est. 1 h 49 m
A circular pub walk from the Nevill Crest and Gun in Eridge Green, East Sussex. The Nevill Crest and Gun is more than 500 years old and takes its name from the Nevill family, the Earls of Abergavenny, on whose estate the pub was built. The walking route follows a loop through the two adjoining nature reserves: Eridge Rocks and Broadwater Warren. The woodland walk is really beautiful with mixed woodland, sandstone outcrops and open heath being home to a wide range of birds, dormice and Exmoor ponies. The route has several climbs and descents throughout and the woodland and heath paths can get very muddy in winter and after wet weather so good boots are recommended. There are no stiles and three kissing gates to negotiate. Dogs are welcome in the nature reserves but must be kept on leads in some parts and kept to the paths in the remaining areas. The open heath is grazed by Exmoor ponies. Allow 1.5 to 2 hours. Show more
#4 - Rye and Camber Castle
Rye, East Sussex, England
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Length: 4.2 mi • Est. 1 h 47 m
A circular walk from Rye in East Sussex. This is a level route with easy access, starting from the historic town of Rye, crossing a nature reserve to a bird hide and Camber Castle. This walk is one of a collection published through a collaboration with East Sussex County Council. The terrain is easy, being relatively flat. The surfaces are a mixture of pavements, lanes and grass field tracks and paths, the latter of which can be a bit muddy. There are no stiles or kissing gates on route, just a number of simple bridle gates and generous footbridges. You will be sharing several of the fields with sheep. Allow 2 hours. Show more
#5 - The Slater Trail
South Downs National Park
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Length: 5.9 mi • Est. 2 h 22 m
A circular walk through landscape which inspired the artist Eric Slater (1896-1963), who spent most of his life living in the coastal town of Seaford. An avid walker, he developed an intimate knowledge of the surrounding countryside and loved to observe the cliffs, sea and sky. Slater died relatively unknown but a series of exhibitions and a book about his life have brought him recognition if at least posthumously. The walk takes just over two hours and can start in Seaford or at South Hill Barn - both offer free parking.Show more
#6 - East Chiltington Circular Walk
South Downs National Park
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Length: 6.8 mi • Est. 3 h 24 m
Begin this pleasant walk at The Jolly Sportsman in East Chiltington. Follow the road through town to the church and get on the path that heads west past the Plumpton race course. Just before reaching the town of Streat, turn left and head south. Eventually, you will pass Plumpton College and arrive at Blackcap. This area offers great views of the Downs. After enjoying the scenery, head north and follow the route back to East Chiltington, where you can enjoy food and refreshments at The Jolly Sportsman, a great gastropub that offers delicious food and drinks.Show more
#7 - Eastbourne Downland and Beachy Head
South Downs National Park
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Length: 5.1 mi • Est. 2 h 42 m
A circular walk, which starts on the edge of Eastbourne in East Sussex, offers spectacular cliff top walking followed by rolling downland. This is a walk of two halves: the first is characterized by lots of people but no sheep; the second offers lots of sheep but little or no people. The highlights are the views, followed by more views, and then some more. All of this walk is on firm and dry grassland, with no road walking at all. There is one steep, and challenging climb, with two smaller slopes. There are no stiles but you will need to negotiate several gates. The first part of the walk is ideal for dogs, as long as they avoid the sheer cliffs. The second half contains a mile or so through sheep fields, where dogs will need to be under close control. Allow 2.5 hours.Show more
#8 - Etchingham Circular and Bodiam Castle
Etchingham, East Sussex, England
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Length: 17.5 mi • Est. 8 h 10 m
#9 - Waller’s Haven Circular Walk
Battle, East Sussex, England
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Length: 5.7 mi • Est. 2 h 40 m
#10 - Buxted Park and Views Wood
Deer Park
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Length: 3.8 mi • Est. 1 h 49 m
A circular walk through the historic Deer Park at Buxted in East Sussex, crossing the River Uck, and completing a circuit of the Woodland Trust site at Views Wood. This walk is one of a collection published through a collaboration with the East Sussex County Council. The terrain is medium difficulty. You will need to negotiate several gates, kissing gates, footbridges and steps plus 3 stiles (some of which have tight fence surrounds so most dogs will need a lift over). There is one crossing of the A272 which needs care. You may be sharing some of the parkland with deer or other livestock. Allow 2 hours. Show more
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