Great UK beaches

We pick some of the best beaches in the UK for you to explore this summer, perfect for sand, sports, rockpooling and swimming.

Forget about airport queues and head to the gorgeous seaside in the UK this summer!

Bantham beach, Devon

South Devon beaches can be really busy in summer but Bantham beach, looking out towards Burgh Island, is located away from main towns so there’s usually space for everyone. Here you’ll find good quality takeaway food and ferry rides across the Avon in summer.

Good for: sandcastles, surfing, walking.

Red Point, Wester Ross

Scotland is spoilt for stunning long beaches but this sandy stretch near Gairloch is stunning for its remote feel and its amazing sand dunes. Wander the rocks and coastline by foot, but you’ll need transport to get here.

Good for: sand play, walks, wildlife watching.

Rest Bay, Glamorgan

This south Wales beach can get busy, but when the tide is out there’s plenty of room for everyone. Between the long sandy beach and the road, there is a crop of rocks that are great for scrambling on. There’s a lifeguard HQ here and a handy café.

Good for: rockpooling, surfing, swimming, sand play.

Portrush West Strand, Co. Antrim

The coastline around Portrush is rich in fabulous beaches. This Blue Flag-awarded beach is well located for those who want a family seaside experience (Barry’s amusement park is nearby and you can book boat trips) and for water sports.

Good for: sandcastles, canoeing, sailing, windsurfing, 

Holkham, Norfolk

Part of Holkham National Nature Reserve, this vast sandy beach has featured in many films because it’s so dramatic and beautiful. At high tide its basin fills with water to create a shallow lagoon.

Good for: sand play, relaxing, walking.

Savvy tip

Beaches in the UK have restrictions on dog walking during summer months but check before you go, especially if you have small children with you. Search for a beach local to you with the Good Beach Guide.


Pass it on – get a beach-ready body

Use a day out at the seaside as an excuse to spur on your feelgood regime! Check out our beach-ready body tips for women and for men.