Beaches in the North East

Best beaches in the North East

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The Northern Powerhouse isn’t just a saying related to the great towns of the north. You can apply the popular phrase to the region’s beaches too, with the North East home to some of the most epic coastline in the entire country.

The stretch of sand along the North Sea is home to some picturesque views that will take your breath away. Mile upon mile of stunning seaside is yours to explore, in this, the least densely populated part of England. You’ll see why the region is a constant favourite with photographers and artists, with a touch of heritage and history adding the icing on the cake to the stunning surroundings. Secret coves and rocky bays tie in with ancient castles and artefacts of the past to bring you an underrated coastal experience that will live long in the memory. We’re out to prove that you don’t have to head south for the best seaside staycation. Here are five of the best beaches in the North East just waiting to be discovered.

Scarborough Beach

Scarborough Beach

Not just one of the region’s best beaches but one of the UK’s, we simply couldn’t leave Scarborough off the list of best beaches in the North East. The town serves as a top seaside attraction in its own right, with everything needed for a great day out at the seaside within a very short walking distance from the sand. Cafes, restaurants, theatres and those all-important amusements tie together to make this a great place for a day out, and that’s before the outstanding ice cream and fish and chips are mentioned! 

There are two large, sandy bays that stretch along Scarborough’s promenade, divided by the epic sight of the town’s 11th-century castle. Whether you’re a group that likes to simply sit on the sand or get your feet wet in the sea, Scarborough’s terrain is equally welcoming for both. The beach attracts all types of people, with families and couples ranging from retirees to Generation Z all enjoying this atmospheric area of Yorkshire. 

Cleethorpes Beach

Cleethorpes Beach

Cleethorpes Beach gives its visitors all the facilities of Skegness with the relaxed vibe of rural Lincolnshire. This lovely combination wins it a place on the list of best beaches in the North East. Another area of gorgeous golden sand, Cleethorpes ties in nicely with a wider exploration of Lincolnshire’s coast. Here, you’ll be just steps from all the attractions associated with a day out at the seaside. Once again, we couldn’t recommend the fish and chips highly enough, with Papas on the pier regularly leaving customers saying ‘that was the best fish and chips I ever tasted’.

There is a great view of the North Sea’s horizon from the beach, and there are regular donkey rides along the sand. Bringing the little ones along? Try out the famous Lollipop land train, which also links up with the wondrous Cleethorpes Coast Light Railway, a great way to transport you from Cleethorpes Beach into wider lush Lincolnshire. 

Robin Hood’s Bay Beach

Robin Hood's Bay Beach

Robin Hood’s Bay is an area of immense natural beauty, undoubtedly making this one of the best beaches in the North East. Nestled south of Whitby, the beach lends its name to the legendary hero himself. Neatly positioned at the coastal edge of North York Moors Park, the beach is surrounded by lush greenery on one side and craggy cliffs on the other. The tide varies massively in this quiet space, with the sea drowning out the beach during high tide but leaving behind attractive rock pools and small shallow bodies of water- incredible ingredients for any stretch of sand. 

The beach sits on the Dinosaur Coast, and at low tide, the area is particularly popular with fossil hunters. There is a taste of more recent history too. The bay was keenly used by smugglers to import their contraband into the UK. There are said to be underground passages leading from the beach to houses in the village to enable this tyrannical trade. 


Bamburgh Castle Beach

Bamburgh Castle Beach

Bamburgh offers a cracking combination of history and geography to entice its visitors. This wild stretch of coastline is the perfect place to go for a windswept walk at any time of the year. The beach is wide and expansive, with the picturesque North Sea providing a beautiful backdrop. You’ll also see the undisturbed Farne Islands in the distance, an archipelago made up of 15 to 20 islands depending on the level of the tide. The geological peculiarities of this area make it one of the region’s best surfing spots. 

Beyond this beauty, it’s the incredible castle that wins Bamburgh a place on the list of best beaches in the North East. Imposing itself over the sand, a structure is known to have stood here stoically since the 6th-century, with the present remnants dating back until at least the 12th-century. It’s well worth a visit to see its extensive collection of arms and armour. And if Medieval history isn’t enough, it’s worth noting that Bamburgh Castle Beach was also the testing site of the world’s first-ever lifeboat. 

Coves Haven Beach, Holy Island

Coves Haven

Undoubtedly the most unique beach on this list, Coves Haven is just a short journey north from Bamburgh Castle, but you may as well be a world away. This secluded stretch of sand sits on the mysterious Lindisfarne, also commonly known as Holy Island. Accessible to the mainland at low tide, this beautiful area is also one of the most remote parts of the country. It’s an experience in itself on your way here, with the road stretching across the first waves of the North Sea before you reach land that exists at both high and low tide.

Backed by cliffs and sand dunes, the beach is sheltered from the high winds that are a common phenomenon for the handful of people that call the island home. The area never gets too busy, and at low tide, there is an abundance of space to explore. Rockpools form, providing a great space for kids to play and dogs to roam. The contrasting qualities of Coves Haven Beach make it the alternative offering in the set of best beaches in the North East.