Walking on the Durham Heritage Coast
The Durham Coastal Footpath is an 11 mile walking route following the England Coast Path National Trail – discover and explore spectacular grasslands, magical coastal denes and uncover the rich heritage that has shaped this coastline into a unique and fascinating place to be. Our coastline is unique – nowhere else in Britain has such a wonderful display of Magnesian Limestone Coastal Grasslands supporting a vast array of wildflowers and insects. The orchids, sound of skylarks and lapwings in summer are a treat to the senses not to be missed!
The coastal denes created at the end of the last ice age support some of the most natural woodland in North East England and provide a valuable habitat for mammals such as deer, foxes, badgers and bats. Woodland floors are seasonally adorned with wild garlic, bluebells and snowdrops, with birdsong echoing through the mature and elegant oak, ash and yew trees.
After the decline of coal mining on the coast, water quality continues to improve, now matching standards found around the UK. We are seeing a fascinating recovery of life beneath the waves, with kelp beds expanding and large populations of colourful anemones as well as seals and a little further of basking sharks are frequently sighted in the summer months.
The footpath is marked by waymarkers and finger posts with a variety of informative and interesting artwork along the way.
The England Coast Path will be a new National Trail all around England’s coast. It’s opening in sections and will be complete in 2020. When it is complete it will be be one of the longest coastal walking routes in the world.