Longniddry Bents is a broad sandy strip of coastline, situated to the north of Longniddry, stretching for approximately 4.5 km.
Three car parks which all lie adjacent to the B1358 and A198 coast road and are well signposted.
Longniddry Railway Station is in easy walking distance of the beach (one kilometre) with Scotrail trains operating on a regular basis from Edinburgh Waverley, and to the east from North Berwick.
- the Countryside Ranger Service co-ordinates the day-to-day management of this site
- seasonal toilet facilities, including disabled toilets, are available on site
As well as the long sandy beach, there are rock pools to explore and fine views looking towards Edinburgh and the Forth Bridges.
Large areas of semi-natural coastal grassland are of particular interest. The low nutrient levels of the soil and the exposure to sea winds and salt spray make it difficult for vigorous plants to become established. This allows other species to thrive, including some that are relatively rare elsewhere. Look for cowslips in spring. These yellow flowers eventually gives way to a riot of purple, as bloody cranesbill takes over, often forming dense carpets.
Despite the large number of visitors, a variety of bird species are able to breed here. Chiffchaff, willow warbler and reed bunting can be heard calling from the scrub. The burns crossing the bents are home to a small population of water voles. These small mammals are now increasingly rare, mostly due to habitat loss, but are still managing to cling on here at this location.
The mid shore attracts a number of wading birds that feed on the animals living there. Species include oystercatcher, redshank, bar-tailed godwit and curlew.
The sea has rafts of eider duck nearly all year round. A local speciality is the small population of red-necked grebes that can sometimes be seen between November to March.