Montrose Basin

Montrose Basin is an enclosed estuary of the river South Esk covering 750 hectares, home to over 80,000 migratory birds – including pink-footed geese, Arctic terns, knots and sedge warblers. Our four-star visitor centre offers a great day out for all the family in Angus.

Address: Montrose Basin, Rossie Braes, Angus DD10 9TA

Why visit?

Highlights include:

  • Telescopes, binoculars and live video footage of visiting migratory birds
  • Interactive toys and games – including microscopes and puzzles
  • Regular wildlife events – guided walks, children’s activities
  • Formal and informal education programmes for school groups run all year round
  • Fairtrade tea and coffee available – relax with panoramic views across the Basin
  • Range of wildlife gifts available from our gift shop

Best time to visit?

Easter to Oct for activities, Apr to Aug for sand martins, Oct to Feb for wintering geese, anytime for wildfowl and waders

Visit for:

  • birdwatching
  • coasts
  • geology
  • scenery
  • mammals

Other information

This tidal basin is an important roosting and feeding area for a variety of passage migrants, and is internationally important for breeding eiders and wintering waders and wildfowl, attracting up to 80,000 pink-footed geese in winter.

The centre regularly runs events suitable for all the family.



Hover for more information


How to get there


By road, the reserve can be located on the A92 Montrose to Arbroath road, just 1 mile out of town. The visitor centre is well signposted and free parking is available. There are also frequent train services from Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and all intermediate stations to Montrose. Alternatively, you can reach the visitor centre by taking a bus from Montrose town centre to Ferryden (then a short walk), or from Montrose town centre to Arbroath/Dundee with a request to stop at the top of the drive.

Get directions

Getting onto the reserve

There are several access points onto the reserve. These can be identified by visiting the visitor centre.

Access restrictions

The visitor centre is wheelchair accessible.
The visitor centre has restricted opening hours during the winter.

Nearest town
Montrose (1 mi / 1.6 km)
OS grid ref
Landranger map


Montrose Basin visitor centre

Opening times

Mid-Feb to 31 Oct: open daily from 10.30am-5pm
1 Nov to Mid-Feb: open Fri to Mon from 10.30am-4pm
Closed on 25 & 26 Dec and 1 & 2 Jan


Adults: £4
Concession: £3
Members: FREE
Children: FREE
Family: £7.50 (2 adults and 2 children), 50p for extra children
Groups: 10% discount for groups of 11 or more

01674 676 336


Get the latest from the Montrose Basin visitor centre

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Spring is in the Air

With the exciting return of the Ospreys at Loch of the Lowes, we too have some of our own spring migrants returning to the Basin.  The first of the sand martins have returned and are getting the pick of the nesting holes in our sand bank.  Why not pop into the visitor centre to see our colony grow and watch them darting over the water while they feed!   A sand martin inspects the wall at…

Words, weather, waders and unicorns!

Words, weather, waders and unicorns!The end of February is really close, as well as the end of my SWT project here in Montrose. It seems yesterday when I arrived, in a dreich evening of March, meeting the Scottish wind, the Scottish cold, the Scottish dark, and the first Scottish people of my life. Fairy party in the forest with the Scottish bluebells! ©Marika Davoli During the initial week I kept telling to myself “I don’t know if I’ll hold on…


Montrose Basin webcam


About Montrose Basin

Out & about

Nearby reserves
Montrose Basin

Local group
Angus and Dundee

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Reserve leaflet

Reserve map


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