Skip to main content
  1. Home
  2. Visit Thanet Blog
Coastal Explorer Packs. Credit Thanet District Council.jpg

Embrace Coastal Life - Birdlife, Marine Life and Wildlife

Thanet Tourism
17th January 2022

It’s a great time of year to wrap up warm, step out in the fresh sea air and experience the Isle’s wonderful natural landscapes and the amazing birdlife, wildlife and marine life to be found along our 19 miles of stunning coastline and in a reclaimed chalk quarry!

Do you know your Turnstone from your Sanderling or your Redshank from your Oystercatcher? If not then perhaps joining the Bird Wise East Kent team for one of their free walks and talks is just what you need. They will help you to spot some of the ‘Daring dozen migratory birds’ that can be found along our shores having made the perilous journey to feed at our coast, and to discover some of our local history and geology.

They will help you to understand how to enjoy the coastline and birdwatching with minor disturbance to these wintering birds. Each year thousands of wildfowl and waders arrive here from as far afield as the Arctic to spend the short winter days feeding and resting, conserving energy for the long return journey. Therefore getting the balance of enjoying the coast and birdlife, whilst not disturbing the birds is essential.

During February half-term the Bird Wise walks and talks will coincide with Thanet Coast Project’s Scavenger Hunts, perfect for 4-9 year olds working in family teams. Find clues washed in from the sea about our local wildlife and marine environment - with plenty of help on hand to explain all! Further information is available here with booking open from Friday 28th January.

Another place to gain inspiration is Active Ramsgate’s birdwatching page covering everything from the wetland haven of Sandwich and Pegwell Bay National Nature Reserve, the Kingfishers that can be spotted around Ramsgate’s Royal Harbour and the guided bird walks you can enjoy with expert local birders.  There is also information on Monkton Nature Reserve - 16 acres of reclaimed chalk quarry, now an important habitat for birds with over 350 species of flowering plants. 

Sandwich and Pegwell Bay National Nature Reserve

It's not just all about the birds at Monkton Nature Reserve either, as it is also home to great crested newts, smooth newts, dragonfly, common lizards, damselflies, broad-bodied chasers and grass snakes. There are a number of trails laid out and signposted around the reserve to allow visitors to take in all the varied habitats, birds and wildlife.

Looking at pond life at Monkton Nature Reserve

If marine life is more your thing, or you have children with lots of energy and inquisitive minds, then a Coastal Explorer Pack is just the ticket. They contain all the equipment you need for family rockpooling fun, including a net, magnifying glass and a marine identification sheet so you can name your discoveries. You can also learn essential explorer skills such as how to make a sundial and use a compass. Packs are just £5 plus proof of ID to hire for at least half a day of awesome adventure.

Coastal Explorer Pack

We’d suggest a return visit in the summer if this has inspired you, when you can join the Thanet Coast Project for their ever-popular Seashore Safaris and find out what lurks in the rockpools of our beaches with experts on hand to answer any questions. Or how about a boat trip from Ramsgate to spot seals and birds in their natural habitat with Sea Searcher or Go2Sea?

Seals near Sandwich

Make sure you pop into our Visitor Information Centre in Margate during your stay. Not only is the team brilliant with suggestions of things to see and do, but they have some great souvenirs to remind you of your trip, which feature some of our local bird and marine life. We’re real fans of these cute little birds!

Bird souvenirs at Visitor Information Centre

TDC 3 towns logo (High Res ).JPG
Contact Us
Visitor Information Centre
The Droit House
Stone Pier
Kent CT9 1JD
Te: 01843 577577
Official website of Visit Thanet, Thanet District Council.