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Seals Guaranteed! A must do experience for ocean nature lovers and wildlife bird watchers. Book a 2 hour trip on our seal watching boat tour, for all ages at See seals in their natural habitat on the banks of the Hamford Water Reserve. We depart from Harwich Half Penny Pier. Seals Guaranteed or a free trip. See the seals in their natural environment basking and lolloping on the shore or popping their heads up around the boat. Its a beautiful way to experience the seals while immersing yourself in the beautiful Walton backwaters. If you are lucky you might spot a Porpois on the boat trip to the reserve. 

Walton backwaters, a healthy breeding population which has increased from only 5 in 1986. The colony of both harbour seals (Phoca vitulina) and grey seals (Halichoerus grypus) which are an unusual russet colour due to the iron oxide-rich mud which they haul out onto. The seals love to rest on the mudbanks like the backwaters, because these waters are permanently free of ice. 

Hamford water backwaters, behind the Naze, is a National Nature Reserve which is recognised as being an internationally important wetland for birds (RAMSAR). Hamford Water and the Walton Backwaters is an area of mudflats, islands, salt marshes and tidal creeks, viewed best by boat. It is an internationally important breeding ground for Little Terns and wintering ground for Dark-bellied Brent Geese, Wildfowl and Waders. It also supports communities of coastal plants which are extremely rare in Britain including Hog’s Fennel.

The RAMSAR classification in the area means that it is an internationally important wetland for birds. It is on the migration route for many bird species and provides wintering grounds for Brent Geese, Godwit, Redshank, Shelduck, Teal and Avocet and breeding grounds for Terns. In addition, there are nationally important numbers of Wigeon, Pintail, Ringed Plover, Curlew, and Dunlin. During migration in the autumn and spring, the Naze is a prime birdwatching site. Curlew and Sandpipers are regularly seen along the beach, with Gannets and Arctic Skuas passing offshore.

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  • Coach parties accepted

Map & Directions

Road Directions

For sat nav please use CO12 3HH.

The closest payable car park in Harwich is The Quay TDC Parking CO12 3HH  An alternative car park is Wellington Road Car Park CO12 3DL

Free street parking throughout Harwich is available

Seal Watching Trips, Harwich

Type:Wildlife Watching

1 The Quay, Harwich, Essex, CO12 3HH

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating - 206 reviews206 reviews
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Tel01728 666329

Opening Times

Season (1 Jan 2024 - 31 Dec 2024)

* Please check our website for all scheduled trips and booking.

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