Walk on the white cliffs
The white, towering rocks are usually the first to welcome visitors to the British Isles, coming from the European continent through the English Channel. On a clear day, the white color of the cliffs glows into the distance, and in bad weather, they are shrouded in fog, where they become invisible. A walk along the top of these cliffs from Eastbourne to Birling Gap is a light 4-kilometer afternoon entertainment with plenty of breathtaking views in distance and depth. It's such an ideal 1-day trip from London, 1.5 hours by train.
Eastbourne- start of the route
To start the route, we chose the small seaside town of Eastbourne, where trains from London run several times an hour. The route takes about 1.5 hours and you need to buy a ticket, because the Oyster card or credit card outside London is not valid.
Pier in Eastbourne
The dominant feature of most major seaside towns and the entertainment center can be found on the pier. Mostly a wooden and colorful promenade above the sea, where you can often buy sweets, play roulette or sometimes take a ride on attractions. Eastbourne has a quieter pier than in Brighton, so you can sit here and eat Fish and chips in peace (as seagulls allow).
Peaceful atmosphere of Eastbourne
The city directly breathes a peaceful seaside atmosphere, which flows in its rhythm of summer fun and relaxation. The long pebble beach is lined with a path for walks as if created. Countless benches along it invite you to relax and sunbathe.
View of the Seven Sisters from Eastbourne
From the pier you can see the beginning of the cliffs. You can check if the conditions are good for a walk, or if there are no clouds rolling over the cliffs, through which nothing would be visible.
Gardens overlooking the sea
On the way west along the coast you pass a long beach covered with wooden barriers (probably so that the sea does not carry the beach material away, but also serves well as windbreaks). Above the promenade you will find several gardens that hide on the hill, providing views and privacy.
Climbing up the cliffs
The path to the cliffs begins just behind the city, where it climbs steeply up the grassy meadow and thus provides a view of the whole town. If you don't want to walk the entire route, you can buy a £ 10 per person ticket on a hop-on hop-off bus that runs a circuit from Eastbourne over the cliffs to Birling Gap and back. It has several stops along the way, so you can get on and off as you wish.
Climb the cliffs
From Eastbourne Town, you need to take the appropriate meters to reach the cliff tops. Seven sisters cliffs rise to a height of 14 to 79 meters above sea level. But the path leads through beautiful green meadows full of wildflowers. The views at rest are diverse and will last for a long time, so that you just have to catch your breath and continue boldly.
Be careful about the choice of weather before you go here on a trip. Even on a sunny day, where the city is blue, low clouds can form over the cliffs and the fog will cover all the views that brought you here. We had this experience on the first visit. It's also an interesting experience to see the clouds rolling over the cliffs, but it's still not worth continuing the whole route when you can't see the tip of your nose.
Beachy Head Lighthouse
One of the first stops on the route is the Beachy Head Lighthouse. A Hop-on Hop-off bus also stops here, where you will also find a snack bar at the stop. The view in clear weather is much better than when we were here last time and the lighthouse appeared only when the wind blew an impenetrable layer of clouds and fog for a moment.
View of the entire route
From the Beachy head lighthouse, located on the highest cliff of the entire Seven Sisters, there is a beautiful view of the route ahead. You can see the Belle Tout lighthouse and the far distance Birling gap, where the destination of our route is and the possibility of descending from the cliffs down to the beach.
Road on top of the cliffs
The route from Beachy head lighthouse to Birling gap leads more or less downhill. Nevertheless, you have to climb a few meters to the next lighthouse on the route, the Belle Tout Lighthouse. This lighthouse hides the possibility of accommodation as well as small snacks.
Belly Tout Lighthouse
If you are not afraid of heights, you can peek down the edge of the cliff. There are no barriers along the entire route, so most visitors have dogs on a leash and children hold their hands tightly. Gulls often make their nests in the walls of chalk cliffs. You can then see them flying up close and let the gusts of wind drift, rising up along the white walls.
Coming to the Birling Gap
On the way down to the Birling gap, you have a view of the chalk rocks in the palm of your hand. Thanks to the horseshoe-shaped beach, you can enjoy the tricolor of white rocks, green meadows and the blue sea.
The view from the cliffs directly above the Birling Gap allows you to look at the beach and see the cliffs up close. At low tide, the stone bottom is exposed, which is dotted with shells and small crustaceans.
Birling Gap beach
Finally, after a walk from Eastbourne, the cliffs allow you to descend from a height to sea level. The view from below gives the cliffs a different dimension and appreciates their monumentality. In the Birling gap you will also find an info corner, where you will find out at what speed the chalk cliffs give way to the sea (tens of meters per century), you will also find toilets and a cafe with refreshments. A hop-on hop-off bus stops here, taking you back to Eastbourne on a scenic route every 30 minutes.
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