Not heading to the Med this summer? Britain has, weather permitting, some of the most picturesque beaches in the world, so if you’re planning a timeshare break closer to home with the family this year, take a look at our Best British Beach Countdown as we round up six of the very best.
Surf’s up! Watergate Bay, Newquay, Cornwall
If your kids would rather be surfing than searching for seashells, Watergate Bay is the place to stay. Cornwall is up there as one of Britain’s favourite timeshare destinations (Scotland, Devon and the Lake District are others) and there’s loads of space on this massive stretch of beach!
Spread over two miles of blissful golden sands, Watergate Bay really hit the headlines when Jamie Oliver’s famous Fifteen Restaurant opened here some years ago. Pop in for lunch for a big healthy salad and watch the Atlantic action out there on the waves.
West Wittering, nr Chichester, Sussex
Something of a legend among British beaches, West Wittering ticks a lot of boxes where younger kids are concerned. The sea goes quite far out leaving lots of little pools for little ones to paddle in safely and there’s plenty to keep them occupied. Quintessentially English, this beach is lined by pastel painted beach huts and there’s a handy café, so parents can while away an afternoon watching their brood constructing sandcastles. The seawater quality here is good, and there’s a nice, unspoilt, traditional ambiance here by this lovely, wide, sweeping beach.
Sandbanks, Poole, Dorset
Consistently a Blue Flag winner for its high standard of cleanliness, the sand here slopes gently into the water, so it’s another safe beach for young children. In summer, there’s a lifeguard on duty, too. Property in this year is millionaire category, so if you love the idea of a luxe British beach break in an upmarket resort, Sandbacks is pretty much unbeatable.
The views are incredible – you can see all the way across to the Isle of Wight, and local shopping is fantastic as well.
Walton-on-the-Naze, nr Clacton, Essex
Clacton has become pretty much an iconic Essex destination for lots of reasons. All in all, you can expect a really fun day out here where you’ll find miles of clean sand lined with beach huts – in fact, did you know it’s the beach with the second-longest pier in Britain?
Fish lovers will love it here, as there’s plenty of choice along the marina-side restaurants, while the younger set will be keen to try out most of the attractions. And of course there are plenty of attractions on the pier to keep little ones amused, from collecting shells to a delicious fish and chip lunch!
All in all, a very family-friendly beach resort with plenty to do on a warm summer’s day.
Kynance Cove, nr Lizard in Cornwall
When the tide goes out you can walk around this beach to the other side – it’s almost like a lagoon so it’s another good one for kids.
Head here for your summer break and you’ll be at the most southerly point of mainland Britain, where the sea is turquoise and emerald and the powdery white sand is soft on your soles.
Cornwall hosts a lot of semi-tropical flora and fauna and Lizard is no exception – you’ll think you’re somewhere much more exotic – so it’s not a surprise to know that Kynance Cove is designated an Area of Oustanding Natural Beauty.
There’s a café above the cove so you can stop for a cuppa at teatime or enjoy the view over a Cornish pasty. Just be aware that the toilets are about 10 mins walk (above the beach), in case of an emergency trip to the loo!
West Cliff Beach, Whitby, N. Yorkshire
Whitby is another quintessentially English beach – not surprising, considering Yorkshire boasts some of the prettiest, wildest scenery in all of the UK! This little town is full of quaint side streets and hidden lanes – the perfect stop for fish and chips prepared with the freshest catch of the morning. This is a long stretch of coastline with various different beaches strung along it, but West Cliff is probably one of the top family favourites and you can be sure it’s clean – it’s a Blue Flag winner.