Foreness Point is situated in the NE corner of The Isle of Thanet at TR384717.  Our walks at this site start at Palm Bay School. There is ample free car parking along the entire length of Palm Bay. From the cliff top it is possible to watch visible migration throughout most of the year and northern gannets, gulls and terns occur in good numbers during passage. Divers, grebes, scoters, and eider are most often seen from autumn through to spring. During the winter months occasional long-tailed ducks or smew have passed by, and glaucous or Iceland gulls are occasional sightings.

At high tide, the beach is utilised by roosting waders, and we regularly host a winter flock of purple sandpipers, rare elsewhere in the SE England. Other species often encountered include sanderling, ruddy turnstones, ringed and grey plovers, common redshank, godwits, curlews, and whimbrel.

The rough chalk grassland is being managed for wildflowers and insects, to provide a home for some of Kent’s rarer bumblebees and solitary bees. The lawns of adjacent Palm Bay often have resting flocks of black-headed gulls, herring gulls and lesser numbers of common gulls, black-backed gulls, and occasionally Mediterranean gulls. Here in spring and autumn northern wheatears, yellow wagtails, larks, and pipits are seen actively feeding.

Butterfly fortunes vary from year to year, depending on weather conditions in spring, and recent disturbance from building work may have reduced their number further. During migration peaks anything can turn up and we have had Richard’s pipit, booted warbler, ortolan buntings, common crossbills, passing harriers and short-eared owls.

Access is by foot from Palm Bay School following the cliff top path to the east. It is possible to walk beyond the Foreness Point via Botany Bay, Whiteness Bay, and Joss Bay to the North Foreland where further good sea-watching can be had. A roadside nature reserve here hosts several orchid species as well as a rich chalk grassland flora with abundant butterflies in good years. There are two public houses and a public toilet enroute and the return walk can be comfortably undertaken in a morning or afternoon.




Best time to visit:
Spring and autumn are great for migrants. Winter is best for divers, grebes, wildfowl, and auks.


Postcode: Sorry, we couldn't find a postcode for this location.

Latitude / Longitude: 51.393577681162, 1.4249350831116


Things to do or see

Easy walking exercise.

Enjoy the different habitats and wildlife.

Pause for refreshments at a mid-way hostelry.

Spot something new, be it a bird, flower, insect or mammal.

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