Sandy and Susan’s Walks on the Fife Coastal Path
Walking Fife: time for a summary of our Fife Coastal Path walks. This will mean you have an easy guide to find the different walks which we’ve completed over the years. We’ve walked in different seasons and have taken walks of varying lengths. The sections we refer to are those in the Footprint Maps of the Fife Coastal Path. This is a handy map available from our website see below. It’s the guide we’ve used throughout our walks. If you want to do some preparation for the walk we have two other recommendations for you see below.
The path is generally well marked and if you’re walking from Kincardine to Newburgh, the direction will be found by keeping the water to your right!
Preparation for the Walk
I first walked the route in 2016 and again this year in 2023. Most of the route is easy walking on good well maintained paths but some parts are more challenging. A good pair of stout shoes or walking boots is highly recommended. Some sections of the walk can be very remote so pack plenty of food and water. Waterproof clothing is also highly recommended. If you have them a pair of binoculars don’t forget to take them with you. We spotted a number of seals offshore, dolphins and lots of different birds.
I am often asked about whether or not to wear shorts and I have always answered, that it is up to the individual. However when I walked the section from Leuchars to Tayport wearing shorts I was attacked by clegs and had a number of large bites on my legs. Over the last couple of years there has been an increased risk of Lyme Disease prompting Fife Coast and Countryside Trust to issue warnings about ticks along the route. If you want to find out more about Lyme Disease and the risks, then click this link
I hope you enjoy reading this blog and you find some helpful hints to help you enjoy walking the route.
Section 1 Kincardine to Limekilns – 11 miles or 17.5 km
Section 2 Limekilns to Burntisland – 17 miles or 27.4 km
Section 3 Burntisland to Buckhaven – 14 miles or 22.5 km
Section 4 Buckhaven to Elie – 13 miles or 20.9 km
Section 5 Elie to Cambo Sands – 16 miles or 25.8 km
Elie – Anstruther (7 miles)
Anstruther – Cambo (11 miles)
Section 6 Cambo Sands to Leuchars – 14 miles or 22.5 km
Leuchars – St Andrews (6 miles) – walked the ‘wrong way’ for this bit as the Open Golf Championship was on.
Section 7 Leuchars to Wormit Bay – 16 miles or 25.8 km
Tayport to Balmerino (7 miles)
Section 8 Wormit Bay to Newburgh – 15 miles or 24.1 km
A shorter walk: Balmerino to Newburgh (around 11 miles)
We hope that you’ll enjoy walking the Fife Coastal Path and that our musings and write-ups have been helpful when walking or planning to walk the route.
Sandcastle Cottage in Crail is ideally placed for those who wish to complete the central sections of the Fife Coastal Path, and particularly if you wish to make use of the Stagecoach Service 95 bus which runs from Leven to St Andrews, covering sections 4 – 6 of the Fife Coastal Path.
Pin it for later – Walking Fife Coastal Path
Preparation for the Walk
Here are some essential guides you will need for the walk. We found these very useful. Click on the images which will take you to Amazon where you can make your purchase. I receive a small commision which allows me to maintain this site.
Top Tips from Fife Coast & Countryside Trust
Fife Coast and Countryside Trust are responsible for maintaining the walk from Kincardine all the way to Newburgh. They receive a number of complaints from walkers about lack of public toilets on the route. The walk passes through some fairly remote areas where it is not always possible to provide public toilets so planning ahead is advisable. Walkers are reminded that Section 47 of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act states that any person who urinates or defecates in such circumstances as to cause, annoyance to any other person shall be guilty of an offence and liable, on summary conviction, to a fine not exceeding £500.
When Nature Calls
If you have young children who are out of nappies plan for the worst and take the following items:
- A plastic pail with a lid,
- Toilet Paper,
- Hand sanitising gel
With the lid sealed all waste contents can be stored safely and deposited into your domestic toilet when you return home.
Adults (For those who can’t wait to get home)
If you need to urinate, do so at least 30 metres from open water or rivers and streams. if you need to defecate, do so as far away as possible from buildings, from open water or rivers and streams (50 metres or further). Please bury faeces in a shallow hole (15cm) always replacing the turf, take your toilet paper and all sanitary products home for disposal. You will need the following items
- A small garden trowel
- Toilet paper
- Hand sanitising gel
Never place a rock on top of a faecal matter as it only slows down the decomposition process and don’t toilet near farm animals or crops.
In some locations, burying is not advised. Ecologically sensitive areas, such as sand dunes, beaches, and wildflower meadows are off limits, an alternative site must be found.
A full list of public toilets and opening times on the route can be obtained by clicking this link
Ticks and Lyme Disease
Ticks and Lyme Disease is on the increase in recent years due to the milder winters. I found that during the summer months certain parts of the walk is particularly bad namely the route between Leuchars to Tayport through Tents Muir. I would recommend buying some insect repellant and spraying your clothing before starting your walk. I have included a link above where you can buy insect repellant spray online.
More details can be had from the Lyme Resource Centre website by clicking this link.
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