Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to travel to the south coast to find great beaches. All around the UK there are secret coves, vast sandy beaches and rocky bays to discover. Swimming weather may be rare, but England’s beaches are perfect for walking your dog, beachcombing or even sunbathing on sunny days. If you’re planning a trip to the northeast, here are six beaches to add to your list.
Avoid the much busier beach at Whitby and head slightly further north to the picturesque village of Sandsend, where you’ll find a much prettier and much quieter stretch of sand. Backed by cliffs, the large expanse of sand offers plenty of opportunities for fossil hunting and playing in rock pools when the tide is out, subsequently proving popular with families. The water may be cold, but an area is cordoned off for swimming in the summer months with many visitors at least braving a paddle on the shoreline. In the winter, this is the perfect place for a blustery stroll with your dog, offering beautiful views as you walk down the coast into Whitby.
This beautifully wild stretch of coastline offers something for everyone with large plains of sand at low tide, rugged grass-covered dunes, and the impressive sight of Bamburgh Castle towering in the distance. Perfect for long walks by the shore, children playing in the sand and even surfing in the right conditions; the beach is large enough to be enjoyed by everyone. Dramatic at all times, we highly recommend visiting at sunrise for impressive vistas.
Coves Haven Beach, Holy Island
A short distance up the coast from Bamburgh, Holy Island is home to one of the best remote beaches in the area. If you’re looking for a wilder and more rugged sandy beach with much smaller crowds, this is a great option. Backed by both cliffs and sand dunes, the beach is sheltered from the strong winds often experienced on the island, offering a sandy haven for sunbathing, picnicking or letting your dog run off some steam. During low tide, rock pools appear, perfect for children to play in.
Seahouses North Beach, Northumberland
Another beach backed by sandy dunes, Seahouses North Beach is beloved of local families and day-trippers. Located within easy reach of the town, this is the perfect place for settling down and eating fish and chips on the sand, admiring the view out at sea. On dry days you’re likely to see scores of people walking up the coast to Bamburgh, but if you don’t fancy a hike, Seahouses is the perfect spot to settle down and sit in the sun for a few hours.
Crimdon Park Beach, Country Durham
Grassy sand dunes covered in a carpet of wildflowers back Crimdon Park Beach, just north of Hartlepool. Named after the caravan park above the beach, anyone is free to explore the sandy bay, although it is usually quiet. The long expanses of sand and sparsity of fellow walkers make this the perfect dog walking beach.
Saltburn Beach, Yorkshire
Backed by a small seaside resort and framed by dramatic cliffs, Saltburn’s sand and shingle beach is one of the most traditional on the northeast coast. Harking back to its Victorian heyday, the town still features an impressive funicular lift down the cliffs to the shore. As well as being popular with families and tourists, the beach is often frequented by local surfers, because it is one of the best spots on the northeast coast for catching swells.