Looking for a walk long or small, not too far away but a little different? Well let us recommend Crosby Coastal Path walk. Whether on your own, with family, walking the dog, somewhere inspirational to run, it really is breath-taking. Approximately a thirty minute drive from Winstanley down the M58 takes you to a vast golden beach backed by sand dunes, sunken gardens and a marine lake. Crosby beach, coastal path and gardens are less busy than Formby or Ainsdale. However like most places it is likely to be busier in school holidays and when sunny. Read on to find out what’s there in more detail.
What You Will Find There
The coastal path runs alongside a 3 km long expanse of sandy beach. It runs from the end of the Mersey past Waterloo as far as Crosby. You can walk along the beautiful beach with views out to the offshore windmills, the Wirral and on a clear day North Wales coastline. Alternatively you can follow the path with the beach on one side and the sand dunes on the other. There are places where sand dunes have encroached on the path. Where this occurs is variable depending on what effects recent coastal winds have had.
Depending on which car park you choose or which trains station you get off at, you will find yourself by the Marine Lake or directly by the beach.
Dunes and Lakeside Sandy Coves
Children will love the decent sized dunes too. At the south end of the path these run down to the marine lake with a couple of secluded lakeside sandy beaches. Maybe walk along the path and return among the dunes until you reach the marine lake. Along the edge of the lake, the dunes form a series of paths and sandy coves.
Children’s Playground and Grassy Spaces
There is a gated outdoor playground for younger children by the edge of the Marine Lake close to the Lakeside Adventure Centre. There are also extensive flat grassy areas between the lake, sand dunes and walled gardens to play football or whatever other activities you may prefer.
Even on a busy weekend or school holiday the walled gardens provide a quieter area. Whether for walking alone with family or dog walking, they run the full length of the costal path in front of the brightly painted houses. The gardens are split into a number of sections. Visitors are asked to keep dogs on a short lead in the gardens. By the way the captain of Titanic lived in one of these houses for approximately 40 years. You can also find a wonderful little independent coffee shop between two of the gardens.
Watching the Ships
Depending on the time of day, tides and shipping schedules, a number of passenger and cargo ships pass close by. Occasionally there is the chance to see less frequent visitors to Liverpool Docks including Royal Navy and Cruise Ships. In recent weeks this has included the Aircraft Carrier Queen Elizabeth and Virgin Cruises and Fred Olsen. For a list of cruise ships expected to pass see the link at the end of this article.
There are many times when the beach is empty or has limited visitors. Particularly early in the day, evening or weekdays outside of school holidays. However the bizarre trick it plays on your mind is that you are never alone due to the metal men!
Where to Eat and Drink
There are two coffee shops nearby. One is between two sections of the walled gardens. The other in the Crosby Leisure Centre. Alternatively you will find other places for drinks and as well as some lovely retaurants on South Road leading into Waterloo centre.
Unfortunately the Lakeside Adventure Centre Cafe and Terrace is currently undergoing extensive refurbishment so that is not open at the moment.
On your visit take a look at where the captain of the Titanic lived for 40 years before moving to Southampton. In fact his daughter was born in the same house. Although direct descendants no longer live in the property, visitors are still welcome to call in and pick up a copy of his life story for a reasonable fee.
The house is clearly marked by a blue plaque, Just to walk past the row of seaside painted terraces opposite the Crosby gardens is a pleasant enough opportunity anyway.
Antony Gormley’s Another Place
The cast men that you see on the beach are a permanent artwork by Antony Gormley. He also created the Angel of the North. Called Another Place it comprises 100 cast iron figures stretching along 3km of sandy beach and 1 km out to sea. They are set on 3m deep piles looking out to sea. The figures are each made of 17 parts, based on moulds taken from the artist’s body.
Your experience of the artwork may vary depending on the time of day, weather and tide. At particularly high tide all figures may be submerged for a short time. The artists intention is to explore man’s relationship with nature through the ebb and flow of the tides. Gormley asserts it exposes the peculiar body of a non heroic middle aged industrial man exposed to light and time. Trying to remain standing and to breathe. Facing an horizon of ships moving materials around the world.
It was originally exhibited in Cruxhaven in Germany and Stavanger in Norway. Since then the artwork is now to permanently reside in Crosby.
Crosby Beach Tide Timetables
To find out the tide status for your visit take a look at the Crosby Beach Tide Timetables At times of some high tides walking is restricted to the Coastal Path. The beach width can vary from narrow to vast depending on the state of the tide.
How to Get To Crosby Coastal Path Walk
To get there from Wigan, take the M58 to the end.
Follow the signs to Docks and Crosby to the end of the A5036.
Take the second exit to Crosby along the A565, passing Peel Ports Entrance.
At the first lights turn left into Cambridge Road.
This will take you down to car parks by the Lakeside Adventure Centre.
Formal car parks are at;
- Hall Road, Blundellsands L23 8SY – Small Charge at certain Times of Day
- Crosby Leisure Centre, Mariners Road L23 6SX. Free.
- Crosby Marine Lake, Cambridge Road, Waterloo L22 1RR. Small Charge at certain Times of Day
You can park for free on some quietish side roads including Brunswick Parade, Marine Terrace, Marine Crescent and Adelaide Terrace. The last three of these are adjacent to the public gardens.
There are three nearby stations, all on the Merseyrail Northern Line. They are;
- Waterloo – closest to the Lakeside Adventure Centre
- Blundellsands and Crosby
- Hall Road
You can get to all three from Lime Street Low Level. Escalators to the low level platforms are immediately opposite the main station platform ticket barriers.
Click this link for journey planning and timetables.
Although you could easily fill a day with a visit to the areas covered in this article, you could always split your day out. The Coastal Path is close to the following by car or rail;
- Liverpool City Centre
- Albert Dock, Beatles Museum, Maritime Musem, Slavery Museum and International Museum
- Baltic Triangle
Other nearby by car include Formby Beach (including Red Squirrels), Martin Mere and Knowsley Safari Park.
Crosby Coastal Path Safety Notice
Please note – Crosby beach is a non-bathing beach with areas of soft sand and tides. Visitors should stay within 50 metres of the promenade at all tides and not attempt to walk out to the furthest figures. The beach is patrolled by the RLNI.