Sandy beach walk to the Hilbre Islands

Wolfing down our strawberry flavoured overnight oats in the car park we were ready to set off on our morning adventure. We parked in the Morrisons, West Kirby car park. The machine was broken so we didn’t have to pay. But, bring your purse just in case.

Across the road lay a vast sandy beach, stretching for miles. During low-tide you can walk across the sand from West Kirby, an archipelago known as the Hilbre Islands, a site of special scientific interest.

You must be careful as during high tide, the sea washes back to West Kirkby and surrounds the islands.

You can check the tide times here. It takes between fifty minutes and one and a half hours to reach the Hilbre Islands by foot, so you should head back to West Kirkby three hours before high tide to be safe.

As we set off the sun was rising; its shafts of light piercing the clouds. The beach was practically empty. But then, I suppose not many people opt to go hiking at 8.45am on a Sunday morning. Their loss.

The sea air swept through my hair while the incessant roaring of the waves could be heard in the distance.

Once we came to the small first island composed of red rock, we clambered up, and spied the next island and headed from our vantage point.

Walking over slippery rocks we meandered to the left to what looked like firm sand.

Placing our feet on the deceiving terrain we begun to sink. Yanking one foot out, the other began submerging in the slushy sand. The yellow sand became black inky sludge.

Using our strength and speed we legged it back to the slippery rocks and continued towards the next islands.

The second island was slightly bigger than the first, and the third boasted a couple of houses.

At the far end of the last island it is possible to spot seals. We used our binoculars to spy birds – oyster catchers sat on the water edge and seagulls swooped from the sky to the shore line.

Before long it was time to head back.

This adventure only takes a couple of hours and is in the Wirral. To extend the adventure, on a summers day you can spend the day on the island and watch the sea roll in around you. Then when the tide goes back out you can walk back to the mainland.

Where is your favourite UK beach?

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