National Marine Week 2019: what’s on and wildlife to spot

Explore Britain's spectacular coastline this summer and celebrate the wonderful seaside wildlife of our shores this National Marine Week. Here's our guide on the best activities and events to join.

Grey seal

In the UK, we’re never more than 70 miles from the coast, and the Wildlife Trust’s National Marine Week is a celebration of the wonderful seaside wildlife we have here in Britain.

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From rockpool rambles to whale spotting and  seashore safaris, there are plenty of fun activities for people of all ages to enjoy. Here’s our guide to the best events to visit for National Marine Week 2019

When is National Marine Week 2019?

In 2019 National Marine Week takes place from 27th July to 11th August 2019 and celebrates the varied seaside wildlife around the UK.

Boy rockpooling, kneeling on rocks, Kimmeridge Bay, Dorset, England, february

Here is our guide on events and activities taking place across the UK this National Marine Week.

Get involved in a science project, Alderney: 27th July – 2nd August

Alderney will be the host of a number of different Marine Week celebrations, beginning on Saturday and ending the following Friday. You can get involved in a science project by helping to record information on sea species, try rockpooling in the Clonque Ramsar site, or even join an evening snorkel at Longis to finish the week. www.alderneywildlife.org

Ariel coastal view
An aerial view of Alderney in the Channel Islands (Getty)
Sand dune at sunset

Join a snorkel safari, Cornwall: 31st July

This supervised snorkelling event for locals will allow you to view some amazing wildlife before enjoying a hot chocolate on the beach. With snorkelling gear provided (if needed) and expert input from the Looe Marine Conservation Group, you’ll swim at Hannafore Beach and learn about local species. www.cornwallwildlifetrust.org.uk

Starfish
Blood-star-starfish-(Linda-Pitkin)

Watch dolphins and whales, Yorkshire: 29th July

This free national event takes place on the Flamborough Cliffs nature reserve, where you’ll spot dolphins and whales from the coastal path near Flamborough Head. www.ywt.org.uk

Basking shar
Basking shark at Sennen(c)Andrew Pearson

Start a seaside egg hunt, Lancashire: 30th July

This event aims to help The Shark Trust with integral marine conservation issues, and has been created to find out exactly what species have been laying eggs in the Irish Sea. You’ll be hunting for egg cases, commonly known as mermaid’s purses on the strandline, and working out which if the 21 species of shark and skate have been laying eggs. www.lancswt.org.uk

Get crafty,  Lincolnshire: 31st July

Activities from nature crafts to sea dipping will be part of this Lincolnshire Marine Week event. After meeting at the Coastguard Station at Gibraltar point, you can discover the wide variety of plant and animal species that call this area of the British coast their home. www.lincstrust.org.uk

Discover seashore senses, Cardigan: 1st August

Cardigan Bay will play host to an interactive event all about marine creatures and their senses in collaboration with Living Seas experts this Marine Week. The session will include marine themed craft activities and coastline walk. www.welshwildlife.org

Seaweed
Wakame (c)Matt Slater

Get stuck in at a beach clean, Scarborough: 3rdAugust

Help to protect marine wildlife in this beach clean with Waves of Waste coordinators, Scarborough. Starting at the RNLI Lifeboat station and covering the area around South Bay, you’ll help to tidy up the home of various different wildlife species and keep the beach looking inviting. www.ywt.org.uk

Try eco-crabbing, Dorset: 5th August

Learn how to catch seashore crabs safely and handle them without causing any harm. Based in Kimmeridge Bay, this event will teach you how to identify different types of crab and give information around native and non-native species. www.dorsetwildlifetrust.org.uk

Hermit-crab-Alex-Mustard
There are around fifteen different varieties of the hermit crab in Britain (Photo by: Alex Mustard via Wildlife Trust)

Carry out a coastal watch, Somerset: 11th August

This event will see Vanessa Lloyd of the Sea Watch Foundation offer training in how to carry out coastal watches, including an illustrated talk on the biology of certain sealife species and conservation methods. www.somersetwildlife.org/seawatch

National Marine Week beach (Photo by: Steve Waterhouse via Wildlife Trust)
National Marine Week beach (Photo by: Steve Waterhouse via Wildlife Trust)

Find fascinating fossils, Norfolk: 12th August

In this fossil hunting day on West Raunton Beach, your family can discover the remains of million-year-old species and return home with their very own fossil. www.norfolkwildlifetrust.org.uk

Sea snail shells on

Identify whales, dolphins and seabirds,  Cumbria: 17th August

This educational training day with Cumbria Wildlife Trust is designed to let you learn more about the wildlife that can be found around the UK coast. You’ll learn how to identify whales, dolphins and seabirds, whilst recording data and learning how to report your sightings for conservational purposes. www.cumbriawildlifetrust.org.uk

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Bottlenose dolphin
Bottlenose dolphin (c) Harry Hogg

Search the seashore, Essex: 24th August

At this event, you’ll join a team member who will show you the many plants and animals living on the Naze seashore, and learn about the specific forms of life that live in the sea waters. www.essexwt.org.uk

Common-starfish-Alex-Mustard
The common starfish can be found in many different areas of the UK coast, in rockpools and the sea depths (Photo by: Alex Mustard via Wildlife Trust)