Seaton Wetlands comprises an area of marshland and reedbeds next to the River Axe, between Sidmouth and Lyme Regis. It is the premier nature reserve run by Wild East Devon (East Devon District Council), and is made up of four main sites: Seaton Marshes, Black Hole Marsh, Colyford Common and Stafford Marsh.

The main Seaton Wetlands car park is accessed through Seaton Cemetery (SY249914, EX12 2SP), and is adjacent to Black Hole Marsh.

The marsh has an innovative tidal exchange system to produce a lagoon of the right salinity to attact a wide range of waders and waterfowl. Visitor facilities include five bird hides, 4km of level trails and the Discovery Hut, where you can find out more about the Wetlands.

We recommend parking at the Seaton Wetlands car park (‘Just swan pound’ donation for parking), and visiting the Tower Hide (views over both the Axe Estuary and Black Hole Marsh), the Island Hide (all round views of the marsh) then the Discovery Hut (another hide; sometimes refreshments are available here). Continue through Stafford Marsh to Colyford Common, which has a hide, viewing platform and a circular walk around the reedbed.

If you have time, it is also worth visiting Seaton Marshes (nearer the town), where there is a circular walk around the Borrow Pit, and another hide. There is a small parking area near the water treatment works, approached via Hillymead.

Best time to visit:
Any time of year, but Autumn can be especially good for seeing waders on migration.


Postcode: EX12 2SP

Latitude / Longitude: 50.718027905413, -3.0652846216736