A Sunday Adventure to Forvie Beach in Newburgh
Mac and I’s Click Book Stay Sunday adventure took us up the North East Coast this week to Newburgh in Aberdeenshire (not to be mistaken for Newburgh in Fife!).
The journey up has been made so much easier with the opening of the new road - the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route. Google Maps has now caught up and added it into the route planner which is great.
Newburgh itself is a beautiful little village set on the coast. It is home to The Udny Arms Hotel (sadly closed) which claims to have invented the delicious Sticky Toffee Pudding in 1967. There is fab golf club with a modern clubhouse that boasts breathtaking views out to sea. The village has a thriving community and numerous shops including a newsagent, a butcher and a hairdresser. It also is home to lovely The Newburgh Inn
The first of Mac and I’s walk was to Forvie Beach. This can be accessed from the village, following paths around the golf course greens or fro ma wee car park (following signs from the village to the gold clubhouse). The day is bright blue, crisp and a wee bit windy! A perfect spring morning. Mac is full of beans and having a fab time already!
We cross the sand dunes (which I am told the local fitness club run up and down during training sessions!!!!) and are immediately presented with an outstanding view of the sea and a pile of very noisey seals across the estuary (I don’t think I have EVER seen so many seals all in one place). They are all chatting to each other and occasionally wobbling about on the sand. Seals are curious creatures and one or two are in the water very close to the beach Mac and I are on, just watching us. The Seals have their own private beach to encourage the colony to thrive. People are not allowed on their sands!
When on the human beach, care must be taken with dogs in the water as the seals have been known to give a dog the odd bite if they enter the water. Please see this website for guidance on how to safely watch the seals.
Mac and I head for home after a quick walk and play with the tennis ball on the sands and get ready for our bigger walk this afternoon to Forvie Nature Reserve.
Forvie Nature Reserve is a 2 minute drive out of Newburgh heading north. There are two car parks that can be used with lots of spaces. There is a handy map showing all the walks round the reserve. As we had the pleasure of the seal sightings in the morning, we decided to walk to Hackley Bay. By this point the wind had picked up significantly (always seems to happen on a Sunday now :) ) and there are intermittent showers. All in all its still a beautifully sunny day and we are having a fab time. Mac has canine company (Ghillie and Ivor the Shelties) on this walk to so he is in element. At the start of the walk there is sometimes sheep in the fields so please keep dogs under control. We followed the path up past an old railway carriage into the dunes. This is lovely scenic walk full of history. Forvie Kirk (the only part of Forvie Village that remains above the sand) ruin is on route to Hackley Bay. We stop and have a look around it. There are some communities along the North East that have been lost to shifting sands - this is one of them. Please note the orange soil in the stream next to the kirk - the ground is so orange due to the iron in the ground (the colour reminds me of the Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone America) although not on the same scale - but still very unusual.
We followed the path observing the views up and down the coast, looking back towards Aberdeen and watching the rain blow from the mainland out to sea. There is an abundance of bird life on the coast line, in the air and on the water.
We reach Hackley Bay - a magical beach which was very quiet today when we visited perhaps due to the weather. It’s a small beach with unusual rock formations and a lovely view. We rested here for a while and watched the waves, rainbows and the crazy dogs digging and chasing each other round and round the beach.
The tide told it was time to leave and we gathered up our dogs and climbed the steps back up.As we started our accent we had the pleasure of watching a peregrine falcon looking for lunch. It was unsuccessful on this occasion but was a magnificent sight to see. We walked back to the car in a headwind and by the time we reached the car we were all famished! We drove up to Ellon (around a 10 minute drive from Newburgh) to Brewdog HQ Brewdog are a Scottish brewery creating all sorts of unusual craft beers and ales. They have a dog friendly eatery based at their eco friendly brewery in Ellon. We left our pooches at home to have a rest after all their tearing about on the beach and treated ourselves to a delicious pizza. Brewdog have tours around the brewery where one can watch how all their lovely beverages are made.
Mac and I had a blast visiting Newburgh, watching the wildlife and walking on the local trails. We will most definitely be headed back soon to explore some more!
Walk highlands has listed the Forvie Nature Reserve walk on their website - details can be found here.