Aberlady Bay

Aberlady Bay - Lothian
© Mike Pennington and licensed for reuse under this Licence

Only half an hour from Edinburgh is Aberlady Bay renown for its nature reserve and vast expanse of dune-backed sand.

The nature reserve is said to be the oldest in the UK, dating back to 1952, Covering nearly 600 hectares of sand, mudflats and salt marsh this is a haven for flora and fauna.

On low tides the remains of two midget submarines are revealed lying in the sand. One is slightly better preserved than the other. These midget submarines are XT-Craft, which were the training versions of the X-Craft used in the attack on the Tirpitz battleship in 1942

If you do walk out to see the wrecks it is essential to know what the tides are doing. Aberlady Bay has a reputation for fast moving incoming tides and it is not impossible to get cut off.

Type of beach


Lifeguard service


Dogs friendly beach?

Dogs are not permitted on the nature reserve

Lothian dog friendly beaches »

Nearest town

Cockenzie and Port Seton

OS grid ref.

NT 4623 8044

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