This month we're celebrating our long-distance trails in the Pyrenees. Get 20% off selected titles using code PYRENEES20 at checkout. Find out more here. Offer ends 31st May.
12 Maughold Head And Dhymane Bay A Favourite Spot For Seals
Maughold Head And Dhymane Bay: A Favourite Spot For Seals

Walking the coastal path on the Isle of Man

Raad ny Foillan (The Way of the Gull) is a 98 mile footpath around the coastline of the Isle of Man. This long-distance footpath was set up in 1986 to mark the island‘s Heritage Year.

In its journey round the Isle of Man Raad ny Foillan offers a variety of scenery, from the rugged cliffs and mountain moorland in the south, to the glens, beaches and dunes of the north. It wends its way through several nature reserves and along a disused railway. It passes scenes of historical interest, colourful fishing villages and peaceful havens. It takes to the road in several places, yet these country lanes have their own charm and little traffic. The single stretch of main road is of short duration. The footpath is never far from the sea or the cry of the gull. It is suitable for the gentle walker to do in short day-walk sections, for the dedicated backpacker, and for the fit fell-runner to set up his own personal record for the delightful circuit of this beautiful island.ay!

12 Maughold Head And Dhymane Bay A Favourite Spot For Seals
Maughold Head And Dhymane Bay: A Favourite Spot For Seals

The Manx people are a friendly lot and justly proud of their beautiful island. Its modest peaks rise to 621m (Snaefell) and the land descends through moorlands, glens and heath to a spectacular coast where the 98-mile signed footpath, Raad ny Foillan (The Way of the Gull), circles the island.

It was opened in 1986 to mark the island’s Heritage Year and owes its unique beauty to its geological structure, varying from the volcanic rock and slates of the south to the sandy shingles of the north.

The coastal harbours are backed by small towns and villages, which make accommodation easy to find. They are, in themselves, full of interest to delay your progress. Stroll along beautiful sandy beaches or walkways, coastal lanes or promenades.

The guidebook divides the route into nine stages. The longest is 15.5 miles and the shortest is 7.

The southern section runs along clifftop paths decked with heather and dwarf gorse, a riot of colour in late summer. The west coast passes the Calf Sound, a tidal race that pours past the Calf of Man, the National Trust island nature reserve. From Port Erin the way climbs over three wild summits, the highest is Cronk ny Arrey Laa at 537m. The Hill of the Morning Watch is an extensive viewpoint adding to the remote feeling. Pass Peel with its castle and speed along an old rail track.

The footpath now leads along the shore and heathland. Many flowers, some rare, border the path and curious seals keep an eye on you until the Point of Ayre lighthouse signals a change of direction. The east coast is more populated. The hills rise again and after exploring some of the island’s renowned glens Douglas is reached all too soon, with the satisfaction of having completed the Isle of Man coastal path.

The guide also includes two ancient routes across the hills and moors of the island’s interior. The Millennium Way stretches 23 miles from Ramsey to Castletown, while The Herring Way is 14 miles from Peel to Castletown. Picts, Celts and Vikings have all left their marks by the footpaths.

Isle of Man Coastal Path - Front Cover

Isle of Man Coastal Path

Raad Ny Foillan - The Way of the Gull; The Millennium and Herring Ways


Guidebook to walking the Isle of Man coastal path, the Way of the Gull (Raad ny Foillan). The spectacular 98 mile route is described in 9 stages and takes in beaches, glens, moorland and rugged sea cliffs. It can be walked in around a week. Two other paths, the Millennium Way (Bayr ny Ree) and the Herring Way (Bayr ny Skeddan), are also described.

More information

Aileen’s highlights

Highlights include peering down the cliffs at the myriad gulls circling below, looking at a huge basking shark in Port Erin Bay and sitting by the clifftop path with a stonechat hopping around my feet. The four-horned Laoghtan sheep were an unusual sight, too. But I heartily recommend walking this amazing path and collecting your own memories.