Exploring a Traditional Lincolnshire Seaside Town

We had some business to attend to in Lincolnshire, so we decided to make a day of it and treat ourselves to a lovely coastal stroll. We’d holidayed in this part of the country a few years ago and spent a little time exploring the Lincolnshire coast on our tandem. We fancied a nice peaceful beach or promenade walk and chose to visit the small traditional seaside town of Mablethorpe with its miles of Blue Flag sandy beach. In fact, we found out that you could walk or cycle along the promenade from Mablethorpe in a southerly direction to Huttoft Beach almost five miles away!

Since the southerly route took us through Sutton on Sea and Sandilands which we had already visited, we decided on a northerly walk around Mablethorpe and along its beach to see the Tide Bell and Neptune’s Hut sculpture. A quick internet search for the best fish and chips was supported by the two Lincolnshire locals we met before setting off from our appointment to Mablethorpe.

Our walk started from the Queens Park South Carpark around the boating lake to the high street to pick up our fish and chip lunch. We continued down to the seafront to eat our lunch whilst looking out over the beach and the North Sea. The weather forecast was good for mid-November with little wind and bright sunshine. And since the town and beach were almost deserted at that time of day, it made a very peaceful and relaxing setting. When people are home from work in the evenings, and once the summer visitors arrive, I would imagine it that Mablethorpe has quite a different vibe!

The Vast and Empy Beach at Mablethorpe © essentially-england.comThe Vast and Empy Beach at Mablethorpe ©

For our visit, it was quiet and there's just nothing tastier than freshly cooked fish and chips whilst overlooking the sea! We got ours from Salty’s - just up the road - and they were some of the best we've eaten!

Lunch consumed, it was now time to continue our walk along the beach up to the Tide Bell. The beach really was beautifully empty and very easy to walk. For long stretches, all we could hear was the waves break on the sand, and it felt as if we were the only people around.

Having all this glorious space to ourselves makes for an amazing way to relax.

Lunchtime View on Mablethorpe Beach © essentially-england.comLunchtime View on Mablethorpe Beach ©

The Mablethorpe Tide Bell

In one of those weird coincidences, we'd been talking about tide bells just before we found out about our trip to Lincolnshire. Neither one of us had ever seen one, so Mablethorpe's having a tide bell was one of the reasons that attracted us to the town.

A tide bell is a sculpture. But it's also used to warn beach users that the tide is coming in and that they should think about leaving the beach or retreat to higher ground before getting cut off and into difficulty. And having seen Mablethorpe's vast expanse of beach, I can totally imagine loosing track of time and tide while walking, kiting, or surfing.

Tide bells are becoming more popular and the one at Mablethorpe was the seventh one to be installed in England. The sea was quite a way from the bell when we were there. Unfortunately, the sun was going down and we didn't have time to wait for the incoming tide - so we never got to hear the bell toll as the waves set it in motion. Tapping it produced a deep, resonant note that hung in the air for the longest time and felt a little eerie. As a means to warn of danger, I could imagine this being very effective.

I'd love to return another time and hear it ring, but knowing us, we could also end up seeking out all the tide bells around the country!

Mablethorpe Beach Tide Bell © essentially-england.comMablethorpe Beach Tide Bell ©

A short distance away from the tide bell, hidden in the sand dunes, is the Neptune’s Hut sculpture. I’m not quite sure what this is meant to be, and it appears that anybody can add to it. Are you only allowed to use beach combed finds, or can you bring anything along?

I’ll leave you to make your minds up on this one. In my view its some branches and bits of wood held together with tatty bits of string. I’m surprised that a storm hasn’t blown it away!

Beach Huts on the Promenade © essentially-england.comBeach Huts on the Promenade ©

The return is back along the beach until you can rejoin the promenade. Along the South Promenade you’ll find the Lifeboat Station and many of the colourful beach huts that are one of the great English seaside traditions. Mablethorpe proudly hosts an annual “Bathing Beauties” festival that celebrates the history of the Beach Hut with arts, crafts, and musical events.

Walking along the promenade we found several information boards that retell stories of local history about smuggling, shipwrecks, and lost towns. It’s all very interesting!

And before we knew it, we were back at the carpark having covered just over 5 miles and the winter sun was just setting. But that wasn’t the end of the day for us as I (we) love to get the most out of our days out we had one more quirky thing to discover – the tank on the beach, which we found in near darkness and you can read about here.

Mablethorpe Walking Route

This is a map of our walk. If you would like to follow our walk and need a gpx file, then click on the “Discover more info about the Tour” tag.

Things to do in and Around Mablethorpe

Whatever the weather, there is plenty to do in Mablethorpe. Naturally, the beach is the main attraction, but the town is a traditional seaside resort and has plenty of entertainment. There are cinemas and amusement arcades to duck into if it's raining, crazy golf, a boating lake, miniature railway, and fairground rides. On the outskirts of Mablethorpe is the Seal Sanctuary and Lincolnshire Aquapark. If you enjoy watching nature, then there are several nature reserves, where in winter you can watch baby seals from a safe distance.

For more information about Mablethorpe and things to do click here.

Queens Park Boating Lake in Mablethorpe © essentially-england.comQueens Park Boating Lake ©

Staying in Mablethorpe

There is plenty of accommodation to be found in Mablethorpe. There are caravan and camping parks including the Golden Sands Haven site, holiday cottages, and Guest Houses and B&B’s.

Here's a small selection of holiday cottages that you could choose from.

Poplar Farm
Sleeps 8

That'll Do
Sleeps 5

Sleeps 8

And for even more choice, you could try our search box.


For more England days out return from our Mablethorpe page to the England homepage.