© Walter Baxter and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence
This beautiful beach is a genuine hidden gem. It lies in a remote part of East Lothian at the mouth of the Firth of Forth. The beach is in private ownership and there is a small charge to access the narrow track leading to the car park.
From the parking area a narrow path winds down to the beach. Once here, most visitors would agree that the entrance fee is a price worth paying. The beach offers a wide stretch of clean, golden sand and plenty of interesting ruins. The views are quite simply breathtaking.
Notable features include Bass Rock which rises spectacularly out of the sea immediately opposite the beach. Behind the beach, hidden amongst the trees, lie the ruins of 18th century Seacliff House which was destroyed by fire in 1907. The house façade remains. Various outbuildings belonging to the house were used as a secret naval base during the First World War.
Hidden in the dense woodland behind the beach it might be possible to make out the remains of 16th century Auldhame Castle.
The beach has an amazing, tiny harbour, said to be the smallest in the entire United Kingdom. It was carved out of the sandstone rock and is a fine example of late 19th century engineering. The harbour, which hardly has room for more than three small boats, is accessed via a narrow channel; also well worth taking a look at. Beyond the harbour lie the magnificent ruins of Tantallon Castle, perched on top of the cliffs.
The beach is used by surfers, dog walkers, riders and local families. It makes an ideal spot for a day out and maybe a picnic. Children will love playing in the sand and hunting for marine wildlife in the rockpools.