Must-Visit UK Seaside Destinations

Written by Shayle Follows

Hands up if you love going to the beach! Take a look at our must-visit seaside destinations in the UK.

Is there anything better than a seaside stroll? Fish and chips, ice cream, that sea air smell and seagull dodging. Made even better when you don’t have to travel far. Apart from the obvious seaside breaks such as Blackpool, Brighton and Cornwall. There are many seaside resorts in the UK which open up a world of fun for the family.

Whitby is one of the UK's most visited seaside destinations

A little bit of history…

Let’s start with a little history. In the late 19th century, soon after the Industrial Revolution, the UK saw a dramatic increase in seaside resorts. Northern areas such as Blackpool, Bridlington and Sheffield began to see tourists around this time as people from the mill towns such as Manchester, Leeds and Sheffield began to find the idea of visiting the seaside quite attractive. Even southern towns such as Brighton, Newquay and Bournemouth began to see this trend, and it continues to this day. These are still popular locales for day-trippers, especially during Summer.


Whitby is located on the North East Coast

This famous seaside town is filled to the brim with a rich history that is just waiting to be soaked in by tourists. Step back in time and meet saints at Whitby Abbey, try a little fossil hunting or jet hunting, climb the 199 steps, try kippers from fortunes or simply devour the best fish and chips in the land. The coastline around Whitby is both wild and peaceful, offering something for everyone.


Tenby is a popular UK seaside destination

We love visiting Tenby, it is probably the most iconic and visited seaside town in Wales. It is steeped in ancient history and surrounded by an imposing medieval stone wall. There are plenty of shops in the town specialising in locally produced items and plenty of attractions such as boat trips, wildlife parks, golf and plenty of walks within the surrounding areas across the many beautiful beaches and the famous Pembrokeshire Coastal Path.

Read our review of the Eco-Escape campsite in Milford Haven near Tenby.


UK Beach Resort Of Blackpool

Blackpool is a town on the coast of the Irish Sea in the northwest of England, it flourished during the railway expansion in the 19th century. Blackpool is known now for its seafront, amusement arcades, and a wide network of hotels and B&Bs. Thrill-seekers can test their nerve at Blackpool Pleasure Beach! If you manage that you’re probably brave enough to visit the Blackpool Tower and the Tower Dungeons. For animal lovers try Blackpool Zoo or swim with sharks at SEA LIFE Blackpool. Meet your idol at Madame Tussauds or relax in the 84-degree paradise at the Sandcastle Waterpark.

Stay in one of these seafront hotels in Blackpool when you visit!


UK seaside resort of Llandudno

Llandudno is called the “Queen of the Welsh Resorts”, though this could be for the Victorian Extravaganza event that celebrates the roots of this beautiful town. It is also famous for being mentioned in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, and it is where the protagonist Alice often went on holiday with her family. How cool is that? Be curious and follow the White Rabbit on the Alice Town Trails. Stroll along the pier, picnic on the beach, brave a walk or cable car up The Great Orme. View more activities to do with the kids in North Wales.

Brighton and Bournemouth

UK seaside town of Brighton

Brighton and Bournemouth both lay on the English Channel coast. Brighton is in East-Sussex, and like many other seaside resorts owes much of its popularity to the railway expansion. Londoners would often ride the rails to take a brief summer break in Brighton. It is also home to the West Pier which seems to resist many of the restoration attempts and suffered two fires back in 2003. The British Airways i360 Tower by Mark Barfield, the architect behind the London Eye, is a 183m observation tower that offers Brighton’s best views!

Bournemouth is one of the UK's most loved seaside resorts

Bournemouth, on the other hand, owes its popularity to its excellent surfing conditions. Close to Poole Bay and the Jurassic Coast it has become a popular destination for a summer holiday. Bournemouth was founded in the year 1810 but wasn’t officially recognised as a town until 1870. Ideal for a peaceful beach weekend.


UK Beaches Newquay

On the North Atlantic Coast, on the English side of the Severn Bridge, is Newquay. It began to see a boom in popularity in the 1960s as it also has excellent surfing conditions. So much so that during the summer the population increases from 22,000 to 100,000 people. Newquay was built up as a town over the course of the 20th century, it’s often referred to as “the Blackpool of West Country” and is a popular destination for hen and stag parties.

New Brighton

New Brighton seaside resort

In Wirral, Merseyside. New Brighton is the UK’s longest promenade, with just over 2 miles of space. The view across to the city of Liverpool’s skyline is stunning. There is something about watching the liveliness of the City peacefully from a beach. Marine Point, the latest sixty-five-million-pound development in the area has given New Brighton a new lease of life. Shops, bars, restaurants and a cinema there is plenty to do for the entire family.

St Ives, Cornwall

St Ives seaside town in the UK

Stunning sandy beaches, pretty coves and amazing surfing conditions. St Ives is a popular destination for summer holidays with its lively atmosphere during the summer months. Here you can visit the Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden, art lovers will enjoy the Tate, St Ives. Relax in the many restaurants, cafes and bars in St Ives, or stroll along the picturesque South West coastal path.

Which UK seaside destination is your favourite? We love to hear your feedback let us know what you think in the comments below!

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