Well, this was a red-letter day: a short walk, only 3 or so miles!! And red in other respects too. The cliffs around Peel are different from any others you will come across in the Isle of Man landscape being made of red sandstone. The wonderful Peel castle is and the grand Peel Cathedral (as well as many of the houses in Peel) are made out of this same substance, just as in the south many of the buildings comprise the local limestone.
I had just been to a Pilates class. The weather was sunny with a fresh wind, the tide was in and the white horses were galloping over the sea. It was so inviting. I ignored my first thought to get back to Port Erin and the drudgery of work and allowed myself an extra hour of exhilaration before succumbing to the normal duties of life.
Walking beside the Marina, I started at the bridge over the River Neb and walked along the promenade. As I reached the far end the waves were crashing against the concrete defences, throwing up massive fountains of water onto the pavements. Some boys were having great fun on their bikes and getting soaked in the process. I avoided the temptation to touch or kick the rocks at the far end which I believe is a tradition for Peelers.
I climbed the short distance on to the cliff, which skirts round the edge of Peel, past the old beach swimming pool. This is a very easy walk, which is great for all ages and affords a wonderful view of Peel and its surrounds. A nice grassy path, hardly any elevation, and stunning views to the north and west. It’s just a shame I can’t share them with you as my phone ran out of battery after about 5 mins – nothing new there then.
The jagged rocks stick out from the path and many seabirds were taking advantage of this, and there were shags and cormorants drying their wings in the fresh air, and several other smaller seabirds skirmishing around in the wind.
The walk continues north for about 1.5 miles on a relatively narrow and windy footpath when it turns inward in order to go round a cove. I stopped at this point and retraced my path back to Peel. If I lived in Peel this would become my standard constitutional walk and indeed there were others enjoying this path along with me, including a runner.
If you are bringing children, you would need to keep very young ones close to you to stop them straying off the path and into the sea, but this is a walk children from 5+ (and dogs) would really enjoy and only being a short distance, it is well within their compass. Not a walk for wheelchairs or pushchairs however.
For those who like a longer walk, you could extend the walk to include Peel Hill or a short walk around the perimeter of the castle. Or, as this is the start of the coastal footpath to Kirk Michael walking northwards is another option, though getting back to Peel might be interesting as you would have to check the bus timetable and avoid TT. There’s a challenge ….