St Abb’s Head and Coldingham – June 2023


Date: Saturday 17 June 2023
Time: 10:00 am
Distance: 10 miles
Difficulty: Moderate (due to distance and one hill)

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St Abb’s Head and Coldingham

This walk starts at St Abb’s Head National Nature Reserve, just outside St Abbs, and visits Coldingham and St Abb’s Head.  It is a Scottish Borders walk full of scenic interest, pleasant countryside, a beautiful loch and a spectacular section of coast.  If you’d like to see more about this walk you can look at the Walk Blog from a previous walk or the Walk Recce.

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We will head out on a track to Mire Loch.  At the top of Mire Loch we will be at the spectacular coastal area of St Abb’s Head.  Weather permitting, we will sit behind the lighthouse and have a snack.  St Abb’s Head is a National Nature Reserve and we will spend some time here exploring.  When we are all ready we will follow the coastal path to St Abbs.

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We will wander through St Abbs and down the coast to the South.  We will then follow the Milldown Burn to Coldingham and the historic Coldingham Priory.  Once at Coldingham we will take a walk around the village and the surrounding area.  This is an excellent place for lunch.

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After lunch we will head out of Coldingham, back towards St Abbs, on the Creel Road.  Before going back to the cars, we will call in at the Old School Café for refreshments.

Hope you can make it.

Julie and Martin x

Places of interest

St Abbs

St Abbs is a small fishing village on the rugged shoreline South of St Abb’s Head.  The village is named after a 7th century princess Æbbe  (later St Æbbe) who was shipwrecked here but was able to come ashore.  She founded a nunnery at Coldingham.


This was the original fishing village in the area.  Fisherman would fish from Coldingham Bay and travel from Coldingham to the coast and back.  Later St Abbs became the fishing village.

Coldingham Priory was built on the site of the original nunnery and was a Benedictine Monastery.

St Abb’s Head

St Abb’s Head is a National Nature Reserve.  There are 200 acres of coastal grassland, with sheer cliffs that serve as a nesting area for seabirds.  The cliffs rise up to 300ft from the water.  From here you can get fantastic views of the spectacular Berwickshire Coast.


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This shows the start location for this walk.

Nearest postcode: TD14 5QF
What3Words: ///seagulls.access.reckon
OS Grid Reference: NT 91321 67410
Parking: There is a car park at the start point, St Abb’s Nature Reserve.
Parking is £3 per day but free for National Trust members. The machine takes cards and also contactless payment.
Toilets:  There are toilets at the Nature Reserve.