The Witterings is a popular beach destination on the south coast, renowned for its sand dunes and miles of sandy beaches at low tide. As the tides turn the shallow waters also create perfect conditions for water sports such as windsurfing and also kite surfing.
In peak summer months the nature reserve offers lots of facilities so that you can make a day of your trip to the beach including on site cafes, beach bars, toilets and also water sports rental shops. You might want to set off early, despite the large car park it can quite quickly fill up on a sunny day in peak season.
The Witterings is a great location for a day out. During the summer months it has everything you need without having to get back in the car.
During the winter months the beaches are a popular destination to blow the cobwebs away on a brisk walk. Dogs are welcome during the off-peak season, don’t forget to check the website for details. To warm your cockles and for a bite of lunch there are a few gem pubs and restraints locally such as The Lamb on the road back from West Wittering - well worth a trip!
Spot the local wildlife
A protected nature reserve, the sand dunes and salt lakes attract a spectacular array of wildlife. The western edge is a popular twitchers’ hang out with hides along the footpaths. Oyster catchers, curlews, grebes and egrets are popular spots along the coastal path, which leads further up the harbour to Chichester and eventually around the Chidham and Bosham. Keep your eyes open for seals during quieter months too!
The beaches and foreshore are a photographers dream and you don’t need to be Ansell Adams to get a great shot! Some local photography studios run workshops to teach you how to get the best composition on whatever device you wish from full SLRs to your handy iPhone. Strong Island are regulars and a good option for course enquiries. Check out their website below:
If you’re planning a longer trip you can also camp or caravan at the local camp sites, one of which is right in the foreshore. If you’d rather stay in a little more luxury, there are plenty of 4 and 3 star bed and breakfasts and self catering cottages within a mile of the beach.
For a picnic in the go, stop by the local farm shop to pick up fresh home baked bread, local cheese and chutney and also West Sussex beers and wines.
The RNLI man the beaches from June to August and offer peace of mind to parents of the more dare devil children! However, it isnt manned during off-peak season and caution is advised as the tides and swells in the harbour are renowned for being fast and unpredictable. Please do stay within the RNLI safe zone flags and keep a close watch on little people and the less confident in the water. Read more about water safety at The Witterings here: http://www.westwitteringbeach.co.uk/beachsafe.html
Before you go, check out the West Wittering website for information about opening times, car park fees and also useful traffic updates during peak season.
West Wittering Beach Website: http://www.westwitteringbeach.co.uk/
The best way to get to Witterings is by car. There is plenty of (paid) parking avaialble. Set the sat nav to PO20 8AJ. Alteratively use the following directions:
From the A27 on the south side of CHICHESTER take the A286 signed “THE WITTERINGS” and continue for about 5 miles. At the small roundabout in Birdham Village, take the RIGHT fork following the brown tourist signs to “West Wittering Beach”. After 2 miles you will enter West Wittering Village. After passing the village shops continue for 200 yards then turn RIGHT following the brown tourist signs along the private road to the car park ticket barrier, or the manned kiosk. Please have the correct change available.