Seven Sisters Walk From Seaford to Eastbourne

Sea, Sun and … the Seven Sisters walk of course! When the weather is nice and the temperatures are rising, lace up your hiking boots (or trail runners, it’s summer after all), apply the sunscreen and get the brim out of the closet. It is time to enjoy a walk by the South Coast, and who knows, maybe even take a dip in the bright blue English Channel.

Technical sheet

A Seaford walk posted on 07/03/23 by The Flamingo Hiker. Last update : 21/03/23
  • Walking
    Activity: Walking
  • ↔
    Distance: 20.95 km
  • ◔
    Calculated time: 7h10 
  • ▲
    Difficulty: Difficult

  • ∞
    Return to departure point: No
  • ↗
    Vertical gain: + 420 m
  • ↘
    Vertical drop: - 422 m

  • ▲
    Highest point: 156 m
  • ▼
    Lowest point: 0 m
  • ⚐
    Area: South Downs
  • ⚐
    District: Seaford 
  • ⚑
    Start: N 50.77302° / E 0.100127°
  • ⚑
    End: N 50.769193° / E 0.281686°

  • …
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Start: Seaford Train Station, Station Approach, Seaford, East Sussex, (BN25 2AR). Grid. Ref. TV 4808 9918

(S) We start our walk at Seaford Train Station. When you come out of the station, turn right (South East) onto Station Approach. At the crossroad, take a right (South West) onto Dane Road and then left (South) onto Church Street.

Continue for 280 m until you reach Steyne Road. Turn right (West) onto Steyne Road and then take the first street on your left (South West), St John's Road. At the end of this road, you arrive at the seafront.

(1) Take a left (South East) onto the Esplanade and walk alongside the beach for 990m. You then arrive at the Esplanade Car Park where the road ends. Take the footpath ahead of you (South East) heading uphill. Walk up the hill. You pass in front of the Seaford Head Golf Club before reaching the top. Continue on this path heading South East and then East with the English Channel on your right (South).

(2) You then arrive at the Coastguard Cottages. At the crossing with a couple of footpaths, cross over the green area in front of you to join the footpath going alongside a fence dotted with stone pyramids along the way which are memorials for the Canadian soldiers who lost their lives on this site during WWII. Continue on this footpath for 1.73 Km walking alongside the Cuckemere River heading towards the North West, then the North East and finally towards the North.

Alternatively, if the tide is low, you can cross the Cuckmere River by foot and you do not need to go around it

You arrive at a crossroad with the Cukmere Inn on your left (West) and a bridge on your right (East).

(3) Cross over the bridge (A259). On the other side, continue walking for a few meters and you find a gate on your right (South) leading to a footpath on the opposite bank of the Cuckmere River. Walk on this path for 960 m. You arrive at a junction with a path on your left (East) offering a safe and dry passage over a stretch of water.

(4) Take this path and then turn right (South East) on the South Downs Way. After 200 m through the marshes, you start your ascent of the first cliff of the Seven Sisters. At the bottom of the cliff, you have 2 options: you can choose the South Downs Way path or the path underneath it, both lead to the same spot at the top of the cliff.

(5) Once you get to the top of the cliff facing the sea, take left onto the South Downs Way alongside the cliff edge. Follow the trail up and down the cliffs for 3.76 Km heading towards the South East with the English Channel on your right (South). On this leg of the walk, you pass in front of the William Charles Campbell monument. You arrive at the National Trust Birling Gap where you find public toilets and a cafe, an ideal place for a break.

(6) After the break, walk across the car park and you find the continuation of the South Downs Way on the other side of the car park on the left of a red phone box. Walk up the hill and at the top follow the path on the edge of the cliff with the sea on your right (South). Stay on this path for 3.74 Km or so. The path is heading towards the South East and bends towards the East. When you get to Beachy Head the path then bends towards the North East. You then arrive at Beachy Head. You see the Beachy Head Inn on the other side of the road.

(7) Continue straight (North East) on the path running parallel to Beachy Head Road.

(8) After 490 m, the path splits in two. Leave the path parallel to the road and take the footpath on your right (South East) heading towards North East. After 290 the path splits in two. Take to the footpath on your right (East). At the following intersection, ignore the footpath on your left and keep going. Few meters after you find the South Downs Way trail going between two patches of bushes. Take this trail going along the edge of the hill in the North East direction.

Please note that there are many different footpaths in this part of the walk. Don't worry too much because, in the end, all of them lead to Eastbourne as long as you pick a footpath going away from the main road so heading towards the North East.'

You arrive at the bottom of a very steep hill with stairs. This is the end of the Seven Sisters trail and now we are going to the train station.

(9) Take B2103 (Duke Drive) ahead of you (North East) in the alignment of the stairs you just walked down. Walk down this street for 230 m.

(10) You find the entrance to a side road on your right (South East). Take the side road called Holywell Drive, heading towards the North East. Continue on this road until you reach the seafront.

(11) When you arrive at the seafront, take the left (North East) onto the Eastbourne Promenade. Walk on the promenade alongside the beach for 1.7 Km.

(12) When you arrive at the Eastbourne Bandstand, do not walk under the arcade. Instead, walk up the stairs on your left (North West) to get to the upper level. Once on top of the stairs, cross the Grand Parade and take the B2106 (Devonshire Place) in front of you (North West). Walk up B2106 (Devonshire Place) for 320 m until you reach a roundabout.

(13) At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit on your right (North West) called Cornfield Road. When you get to the Metro Bank at the end, turn left (North West) onto Terminus Road. At the next crossroad, you find Eastbourne Train Station, easily recognisable thanks to its clock tower, on your right (North East). Eastbourne Train Station, Terminus Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN21 3QJ (Grid Ref: TV 6103 9924) (E).


  1. S : km 0 - alt. 9 m - Seaford Train Station
  2. 1 : km 0.49 - alt. 6 m - Vanguard Way
  3. 2 : km 4.28 - alt. 13 m - Coastguard Cottages
  4. 3 : km 6.16 - alt. 4 m - Cuckmere Inn
  5. 4 : km 7.18 - alt. 1 m - Crossing over the waterway
  6. 5 : km 8.5 - alt. 35 m - Cliff End Top
  7. 6 : km 12.02 - alt. 15 m - Birling Gap
  8. 7 : km 15.99 - alt. 151 m - Beachy Head
  9. 8 : km 16.51 - alt. 149 m
  10. 9 : km 17.95 - alt. 54 m - Stairs Hill
  11. 10 : km 18.2 - alt. 41 m - Holywell Drive
  12. 11 : km 18.43 - alt. 14 m - Promenade
  13. 12 : km 20.15 - alt. 13 m - Grand Parade
  14. 13 : km 20.51 - alt. 8 m - Roundabout and Cornfield Road
  15. E : km 20.95 - alt. 7 m - Eastbourne Station

Useful Information

Start: Seaford Train Station, Station Approach, Seaford, East Sussex, (BN25 2AR) Grid. Ref. TV 4808 9918

End: Eastbourne Train Station, Terminus Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, (BN21 3QJ) Grid Ref: TV 6103 9924

Local Transports

  • Trains from London Victoria to Lewes and change at Lewes for a train to Seaford. The total journey takes around 1 hour and a half depending on how long you need to wait when changing trains.
  • For the return take a direct train from Eastbourne to London Victoria.
  • You won’t be able to book a day return on this walk as the train back from Eastbourne is not on the same line as Seaford. You, therefore, need to book two separate journeys


  • Public toilets are available at Seaford Beach and Birling Gap
  • Pub Stops on the Way:

Cuckmere Inn
Birling Gap Cafe
The Tiger’s Inn, East Dean
The Hiker’s Rest Cafe, East Dean
Beachy Head Inn , Eastbourne

  • This is a stile-free walk
  • This walk is dog-friendly

Find more details, pictures, and stories about this walk at The Flamingo Hiker here.

Always stay careful and alert while following a route. Visorando and the author of this walk cannot be held responsible in the event of an accident during this route.

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