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Ayres Visitor Centre and Nature Trail

An important stretch of low-lying sand dune coastline, great for walking and bird watching

The Visitor Centre sits within the sand dunes, an area which stretches 8 kilometres from Cronk-y-Bing to the Point of Ayre.

A site of major ecological significance, parts having been designated as an Area of Special Scientific Interest and as a National Nature Reserve.

Leading from the shingle beach, the marked Nature Trail winds through the marram dunes and onto the expanse of heath with its extensive lichen flora.

The beach provides a great walk too, with plenty of birds to watch including diving gannets, if you're lucky. You might even spot an occasional seal.

The Trust established the Centre and Nature Trail to increase public understanding of this vulnerable area and to provide information about its birds, habitats and rare plant communities. A short film beautifully illustrating some of the natural highlights of the surrounding area can be viewed in the Centre.


A wooden platform was erected in 2012 to enhance viewing along the coastline and out to sea.

Species and habitats

Coastal, Heathland

Nearby nature reserves

Lough Cranstal
2 miles - Manx Wildlife Trust
Cronk y Bing
4 miles - Manx Wildlife Trust
Close Sartfield
7 miles - Manx Wildlife Trust

Nature reserve map

Reserve information

Ayres Visitor Centre and Nature Trail
The Ayres
Isle of Man
Map reference
NX 435 038
Best time to visit
May - Sep
Get directions
Find out here
Public transport
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Opening Times
Open from the end of May to the end of September, 2pm - 5 pm, Tuesday to Sunday inclusive.
Visitor centre

Contact the Trust from more information
Car park adjacent to the Centre
Dogs must be on lead
Reserve manager
Manx Wildlife Trust
Tel: 01624 844432