Newcastle upon Tyne, England

South Shields: Parks, Beach, Coastal Bluffs

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The coastal town of South Shields, located 12 miles east of Newcastle upon Tyne and easily reachable by subway, features some of the most scenic running in the area. This run has it all: fort, beach, seafront promenade, parks, and a coastal bluff. We’ve mapped a one-way route of 9.5 miles, which you’ll want to use as a guideline to do a section.

Stairs North Marine Park. Andrew Curtis

The first section is 1.5 miles on paved paths through North & South Marine Park, which are greens just above the North Sea, featuring some occasional water views. [Optional: start with a loop around the Roman Fort, just above North Marine Park]. Runners can get the heart rate up using the steps that go between the park and the main road. Then, take the 1-mile pier path out to the South Shields Lighthouse. Continue south on the promenade along Sandhaven Beach for 1 mile. Here, you’re at 4.5 miles.

South Shields Pier. CC: Chris Morgan

Next is the coastal bluff section. There are easy, scenic paths above the water, with great views. The trail is fairly wide and the footing good. The path runs for up to 5 miles to Seaburn Beach, passing Trow Rocks, Horsley Hill, Frenchman’s Bay, the Camel’s Island/ Velvet Beds National Reserve, Mardsen Beach, the Souter Hole, and Finn’s Labyrinth. This can be run in combination with the above or separately!

Longer Run: Continue even further south on the waterfront paths of Sunderland.

Note: The beaches in the area can also be good for running. They’re wide with soft sand that can be firmer near the water depending on the tides.

Essentials
  • We've mapped 9.5 miles (15 km) one-way, so you'll want to choose a section
  • Flat, but the coastal bluffs are gently rolling
  • North Marine Park
  • Numerous car parks in the area, including at the coastal bluffs. Subway between Newcastle upon Tyne & South Shields

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Essentials
  • We've mapped 9.5 miles (15 km) one-way, so you'll want to choose a section
  • Flat, but the coastal bluffs are gently rolling
  • North Marine Park
  • Numerous car parks in the area, including at the coastal bluffs. Subway between Newcastle upon Tyne & South Shields