Porthcurno beach

Best Beaches in the UK

After much thought, we’ve chosen our top 10 beaches in the UK – featuring spectacular shorefront locations stretching from Sussex all the way to the South West and beyond.

So, pack up your picnic hamper, dig out your sunglasses and select a luxury cottage by the sea at one of these great destinations, to enjoy the best of beach life…

Bamburgh Castle

Bamburgh Beach, Northumberland

As far as beaches go, it doesn’t get much more scenic than the North East’s rugged coastline. Bamburgh is one of the region’s most beloved seafronts – and with good reason. As well as being a great spot for surfing, you can walk endless golden dunes and, of course, take in the famous Bamburgh Castle which dominates the village of the same name.

In addition to a dog-friendly beach that both kids and canines will love, there’s another nearby village called Seahouses, where boat trips will ferry you out to the Farne Islands to try and spot grey seals, dolphins, puffins, porpoise and whales.

Porthcurno beach

Porthcurno Beach, Cornwall

The Cornish coastline is blessed with some of the most sun-kissed beaches in the UK and we’ve picked out Porthcurno from among many worthy contenders – mainly due to its sparkling turquoise waters, white sand, granite cliffs and surrounding greenery.

A popular beach, it’s great for surfing and swimming, and even has a natural stream for paddling. Families will also enjoy its location close to the dramatic clifftop Minack Theatre.

And yes, you may also recognise it from a certain BBC TV show…

Sennen Cove beach

Sennen Cove, Cornwall

Another A-list beach in the South West, Cornwall’s Sennen Cove also attracts those on the surf scene and keen cliff climbers. The soft golden sand along a crescent-shaped beach is ideal for summer strolls, while local village amenities such as an art gallery, shops, cafes, beach restaurant and a pub mean there’s plenty to do before or after your dip in the sea.

Barafundle Bay beach in Wales

Barafundle Bay and Beach, Pembrokeshire

In Pembrokeshire, the secluded Barafundle Bay and Beach will let you reconnect with nature. With no facilities – just clear water and soft sand – this intimate Welsh beach, flanked by cliffs and pine trees, is great for swimming, building sandcastles and taking strolls.

The walk along the coastal path and clifftop steps mean its only a beach for the determined to reach but the beautiful scenery – which has seen the area given a Green Coast Award – means this National Trust-owned beach is more than worth it.

Seven Sisters chalk cliffs by the sea

Seven Sisters and Birling Gap Beach, Sussex

You’ll really be heading to the Seven Sisters, 45 minutes further along the coast from Brighton, for the imposing, titular, chalky white cliffs – which make for a fantastic contrast with the pebbly beach below.

Descend from the grassy clifftop – where you’ll have brilliant views of the deep blue sea – down a staircase to the beach, where you can play in rock pools, go fossil-hunting and use it as a base to explore even more of the South Downs.

Rhossili Bay

Rhossili Bay, Gower

Another stand out sandy beach in Wales, Rhossili Bay on the Gower Peninsula offers three miles of picturesque coastline to explore.

Dog-friendly and a perfect picnic spot, Rhossili Bay has golden sand in abundance, as well as waves fit for surfing and more watersports. Seals and dolphins are among the wildlife that can be spotted, while coastal path walks and the popular Worm’s Head point mean there’s plenty to see and do.

Durdle Door rock formation in the sea off a beautiful beach in Dorset

Durdle Door, Dorset

The Jurassic Coast is also home to many a beautiful beach. Dorset’s Durdle Door is among the most interesting thanks to the natural arch that stands nearly 200-feet above sea level.

Owned by the Lulworth Estate but open to the public, the landmark has steep steps that lead from the cliffs down to the shingle and pebble beach. The beauty spot is also home to a number of a caves but caution is urged when on the cliff edge and shoreline as, although spectacular, there can be large waves and rockfalls.

Bantham Sands

Bantham Beach, Devon

For a more traditional seaside experience, Bantham Beach is one of Devon Holiday Cottages’s top offerings. Blessed with soft, golden sand, shallow pools for paddling and wide open space, it’s perfect for the whole family.

A swimming and surfing hotspot, the south Devon beach has a Blue Flag and is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. So sit back, relax in the sunshine, enjoy the fresh air and don’t forget your bucket and spade.

Sunset over the sea at Fistral Beach

Fistral Beach, Cornwall

Situated on the north coast of Cornwall Holiday Cottages, Fistral Beach is most famous for being one of the best surfing beaches in the UK. But there’s more to the destination than just world famous waves worth catching – the popularity, laid back vibe and infrastructure of the area means there’s cafes, shops and snacks aplenty.

The long stretch of sand is perfect for those just wishing to watch the action from the shore but –  if you do wish to take to the waves -there are also plenty of surf schools and places for renting the appropriate equipment.

Holkham Beach

Holkham Beach, Norfolk

If it’s unspoilt scenery, space and the quiet life you’re seeking, the peaceful surroundings of Holkham Beach may be for you. Famous for featuring in the film Shakespeare in Love, this cinematic sandscape offers endless soft, fluffy sand to play in or stretch out on.

Home to a nature reserve, the area is also teeming with flora and fauna, making it a favourite for bird watchers, while there’s also a popular four-mile beach walk. The combination of fresh sea air, sand dunes, salt marsh and pinewoods make this setting feel truly unique.

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If you have any questions about any of our cottages or if you’d like some help with your booking, you are very welcome to get in touch with us.

We are always happy to help and go out of our way to tailor your perfect UK holiday.

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