Officially opened in 2009, the East Coast Nature Reserve is our largest reserve covering 92ha. It forms part of the extensive Murrough Wetlands, an important coastal wetland complex which is designated as a Special Protection Area and Special Area of Conservation. Originally, the grasslands were intensively farmed, with tree-lined watercourses and a conifer plantation growing within the fen. Now, following management through an EU LIFE project between 2003 and 2007, the reserve offers a variety of habitats, from rare fen to wet grasslands to birch woodland, which can all be explored on foot through marked walking trails and observation hides.
Limited parking is available at the main entrance to the reserve along Sea Road (turn left after the Castle Inn, Newcastle) or the coastal car parks at either Six-mile or Five-mile Point. There are marked walking trails between each entrance that offer good views over the whole area; please keep to these trails for your own safety and to avoid disturbance to the wildlife. Please do not open gates or climb over fences. Grazing animals are present throughout the summer months. Please respect the wildlife and other visitors and refrain from bringing dogs onto the reserve, other than Guide dogs.