Hilbre Island, Wirral
Head into West Kirby on the Wirral peninsula to find a wonderful island adventure. Hilbre Island attracts lots of people each weekend, and there is a good reason why! The journey to the island requires good tidal timing, a healthy walk across open sands using a smaller island (The eye) for navigation and a few supplies in case you decide to stay on the island for the day (or you have your tide times wrong!)
Hilbre Island is owned by the Wirral Borough council and although uninhabited it is cared for by the Friends of Hilbre. The Friends of Hilbre was formed in 2001 and help the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral maintain these beautiful islands.
Hilbre Islands are also a key rest point for the twice-yearly migration of birds along the coast of the UK. The island is also home to the Hilbre Island Bird Observatory.
The walk over to Hilbre Island can take around an hour, it’s roughly a 2 mile walk across. Obviously, dependent on how fast or slow you walk, walking times will vary. There is a good Coastguard presence around Hilbre, you will often see a coastguard at the island on their quad bike.
Don’t be afraid to get tidal guidance from these guys as they know the best times you should be heading back.
Hilbre Island Grey Seals
You could get lucky and spot one of the famous Hilbre Island Grey Seals! Normally best when it’s in a milder season, head across the island and you will find a viewing point. The seals have become very familiar with public visitors, but often wait until the tide comes in and most of the public have left to venture on shore.
The long walk is very much rewarded with awesome views of the Dee Estuary and the back drop of West Kirby Marina. Ramble around the island to get a real feel of what it is all about: wildlife, island vibe and volunteer efforts to maintain the beautiful location. Also, don’t forget to take along your camera (or like many, use your phone) to capture some amazing island moments.
Hilbre Island Tide Times
As already mentioned, getting your tide times correct before you head over the sands to Hilbre Island is important. You don’t want to walk all the way over, and only get a short visit on the island because of the incoming tides! If in doubt, ask the coastguard. The Islands are cut off from the mainland by the tide for up to four hours out of every 12.
Thanks for visiting Salty Sands! Feel free to drop a comment below if you enjoyed the read.