We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Wonderful experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Scottish Seabird Centre

Scottish Seabird Centre
The Harbour, North Berwick EH39 4SS, Scotland
+44 1620 890202
Website
Improve this listing
Certificate of Excellence 2014
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The Scottish Seabird Centre is a five-star visitor attraction with an award-winning Discovery Centre, set in a stunning location overlooking the sea and sandy beaches of North Berwick, East Lothian. A world-leader in remote wildlife viewing, the Seabird Centre has solar powered cameras on the Firth of Forth islands - these are controlled by visitors to the Discovery Centre, who can zoom in on amazing wildlife without disturbing it in any way. There's the chance to see puffins, gannets, seals and more - there is different wildlife to see throughout the year and at different stages of the breeding season. There are seasonal boat trips - with a range of different types on offer - from Easter until October. There are trips to the Bass Rock, which is home to 150,000 gannets at the peak of the breeding season; Craigleith, which is the focus of the Centre's SOS Puffin project; and the Isle of May National Nature Reserve. Open all year, the Centre offers something for everyone with a Wildlife Theatre, Kids' Zone and Kids' Corner, Scope Deck plus exhibitions and events. There is an excellent gift shop and the Seabird Cafe features the only seaside sun deck in East Lothian.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Stairs / elevator, Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Wonderful experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2014

Well worth a visit if you are in the area. I did one of the boat trips with my elderly aunt who was more spoiled by the male staff than me! The guide was really informative and Bass Rock was an experience not to be missed.

Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puffin2000, Public Relations Manager at Scottish Seabird Centre, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Hi Sarah

Thanks so much for this lovely review.
Delighted to hear that you were treated so well by our staff and that you had an excellent boat trip out to the Bass Rock - it is an amazing place.

We hope to see you again.

Kind regards
Laura
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

340 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    190
    89
    33
    15
    13
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Newcastle
Top Contributor
98 reviews 98 reviews
13 attraction reviews
Reviews in 64 cities Reviews in 64 cities
138 helpful votes 138 helpful votes
“Staff made the visit memorable”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2014

Not large but get chatting to a guide if you can. The value added this brings makes the visit worthwhile.

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puffin2000, Public Relations Manager at Scottish Seabird Centre, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Hi there

Thanks for taking the time to write this review and feedback on our excellent staff. I will certainly feed this back to the team.

Kind regards
Laura
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Well worth a visit!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2014 via mobile

The cafe is informal with a good variety of options and has wonderful views. The outdoor part of the cafe is a great place to be (the only possible improvement would be to remove the view-blocking seabird centre sign in the corner - better on the wall behind the tables rather than in front of the view of the sea). Also, a good shop. Looking forward to a longer visit and viewing the web cams next time!

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puffin2000, Public Relations Manager at Scottish Seabird Centre, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Hi Katie

Thanks so much for this five star review. Great to hear that you had a lovely time in the Seabird Cafe and that you hope to come back to visit the Discovery Centre.

The sign that you mentioned has been put up to cover the dish which enables us to beam back the incredible live images of the wildlife on the islands. We have done our best to ensure minimum disruption to the stunning views.

We will look forward to seeing you at the Centre again soon.

Kind regards
Laura
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
21 attraction reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Interesting visit”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2014

My boyfriend and I visited whilst staying in Gullane for the evening and decided to have a trip a bit further along the coast. The Seabird Centre was an obvious destination to head to and, as we hadn't been before, we thought we'd give it a try. We visited on a clear, bright winters day which gave great visibility for viewing any birds. Unfortunately, there didn't appear to be many around during our visit. We were warned when buying our tickets that people had been on the Bass Rock cleaning it so it had frightened off the birds but they were still circling. We decided to go ahead and buy our tickets anyway. We headed downstairs and were met by a lovely lady who was clearly very enthusiastic about the birds and gave us a warm welcome. The member of staff showed us how to work the cameras to view birds live on the rock. We couldn't see many, but we were able to zoom in on some unsuspecting seagulls! There are some interesting displays around to look at, and I thought the model of the Bass Rock and the lighthouse were great. There is a small movie theatre playing short films about birds and seals which we enjoyed. Outside you can go to the viewing platform to look out through telescopes. I'm not sure if this would be an ideal venue for bringing young families; I think it takes some concentration to watch for the birds and take in the information about the displays and children may get restless quite quickly. I think it is an interesting stop off point for adults, however. We spent about an hour in total. There is also a shop selling books, stuffed toys, nice oils etc.

Visited February 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puffin2000, Public Relations Manager at Scottish Seabird Centre, responded to this review, April 28, 2014
Hi there

Thanks for your four star review and great to hear you enjoyed your visit.

The time of year that you visited is very early in the season and every day you see the Bass Rock becoming whiter and whiter, and the islands becoming busier, as the seabirds and wildlife returns.

At the peak of the breeding season (from around May), there are around 150,000 gannets on the Bass Rock and the Firth of Forth will be home to around 500,000 seabirds!

We hope that you pop out to visit us again as the season continues.

Kind regards
Laura
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Very poor value for money and not suitable for family days out”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2014

we visited the SSC yesterday along with another family, admittance was £50 for the two families.
4 Children aged between 3- 8.
There was enough to keep the kids occupied for 5 minutes, we left after 10 minutes.
The attraction may be of interest to the serious bird watchers, but to an average member of the public and 4 children, there was very little of interest.

There was very few interactive exhibits, and most of those did not work.

The cafe was ok but certainly nothing special and the HIgh Street has some lovely cafes.
We walked along the beach for free and there was a lot more to entertain the kids.

There is no boat tours at this time of year, though as the boat tours are extra this would not have changed the value for money given.

Easily the worst attraction I have visited in the UK. All 8 members of our party felt they had been cheated.

Visited March 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Puffin2000, Public Relations Manager at Scottish Seabird Centre, responded to this review, March 5, 2014
Dear Steve

Thank you for visiting the Scottish Seabird Centre and apologies that you feel that you did not have the five-star experience we normally provide.

On the day that you visited we had just welcomed the return of the gannets to the world-famous Bass Rock and we have a number of interactive activities taking place. These include fish feeds, a gannet-themed trail around the Discovery Centre plus our Sea Craft which offers child-friendly arts, crafts and books. There is also the chance to zoom in on the gannet action with our live interactive cameras plus a range of nature films in the Wildlife Theatre. Our themed Kids’ Zone, including soft play, is normally very popular with children.

We have also just unveiled the winners of our acclaimed Nature Photography Awards, with a special exhibition of stunning images on display.

The Seabird Café features the best local produce and is the only café in the area to offer a seaside sun deck and unrivalled views of the Firth of Forth. Income from the café, and throughout the Centre, supports our work as a conservation and education charity.

You correctly note that boat trips are not currently available – they do not operate during winter due to sea conditions but we look forward to them starting again at Easter. An extensive range of boat trips will be available to the local wildlife rich islands including the Bass Rock and the Isle of May National Nature Reserve.

We would welcome the opportunity to discuss your feedback further, so please email info@seabird.org and we can address your issues personally.

Many thanks Laura
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Scottish Seabird Centre also viewed

North Berwick, East Lothian
North Berwick, East Lothian
 
Dirleton, North Berwick
 

Been to Scottish Seabird Centre? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Scottish Seabird Centre, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.