BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

17 September 2014
Accessibility help
Nature's Calendar

BBC Homepage

BBC 2 Logo

Contact Us


Urban | Seal Sands

Seal Sands (Image: Map)

BBC Copyright

Industrial Teesside isn't a location you'd automatically associate with nature watching but a trip to Seal Sands is a real treat for wildlife lovers.

Seal Sands is of international importance because it's the only area of inter-tidal mudflat between Lindisfarne to its north and the Humber to the south.

Urban index (Image: Hedgehog)

Return to urban

Wildlife is increasingly finding its way into our towns and cities. Find out about some urban wildlife adventures.

Urban activities (Image: Red Deer)

Urban activities

  • Urban areas offer surprisingly good opportunities for wildlife watching close to where you live.

Seal Sands - Visitor Guide


Seal Sands, Teesmouth Nature Reserve, north east Middlesbrough, Teesside.

Postcode TS2 1
Telephone:Natural England Teesmouth Site Manager - 01429 853325
Teesmouth Field Centre - 01429 264912

Hartlepool Tourist Information - 01429 869706
Maps:Streetmap of Seal Sands.
Ordnance Survey:OS reference: NZ507252 and NZ529273.
Key attractions:

Bird watching - waders. Seals.

The Teesmouth Field Centre, next to North Gare, provides a range of educational activities - book in advance.

Essential kit:Kit - walking shoes and binoculars/scopes. Tide times.
Bird identification book.
Nature watching:

Seal Sands forms part of the Teesmouth National Nature Reserve. There are two areas of the reserve - North Gare to the north and Seal Sands to the south.

Bird watching - two hides in the Greatham Creek area.

Autumn/winter - Knot, Shelduck, Teal, Redshank, Curlew, Cormorant. Spring - Ringed Plover, Lapwing, Oystercatcher.

Summer - Sandwich Terns.

Seal sightings are pretty much guaranteed. Good places to watch the seals are:

- the nature reserve footpath along Greatham Creek (high tide);

- Greatham Creek hide - exposed mudflats (low tide);

- North Gare reserve;

- a viewpoint close to the main A178 road at Greatham Creek (high tide).

Facilities:The nearest toilets and refreshments are in Seaton Carew.
Safety tips: Take care when crossing the A178 road at Greatham Creek - busy traffic.

To make the most of your visit, check tide times before leaving home.

Disabled access: There is an Easy Access path from the car park at Greatham Creek along to the disabled access hide.

Getting there:

Seal Sands/Teesmouth National Nature Reserve lies halfway between Hartlepool and Redcar, 5 km north east of Middlesbrough.

By car: Take the A178 from Teesside.

Parking at North Gare (via a minor road from the A178) and Cowpen Marsh (on the A178), 0.5 km from Seal Sands.

By rail: The closest train station is Seaton Carew.

By bus: The Hartlepool Stagecoach No 1 runs hourly between Hartlepool and Middlesbrough.

Opening times:Year round - open access.
Activities (Image: Swan)

Hands on Nature

More nature locations.


Nature's Top 40 logo

Nature's Top 40

Top nature spectacles.

Competition (Image: Swallow(


Your photos of nature.

Breathing Spaces (Image: Logo)

Breathing Places

Make a difference...


About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy