It may be famed for having poor weather year-round, but the United Kingdom’s coastline boasts an array of breathtaking beaches. They come to life in the summer months if the weather hits right, offering sun-soaked shores and refreshing waters for beachgoers to revel in.
From the iconic Weymouth Beach to the hidden beauty of Freshwater West, these sandy havens have captured the hearts of locals and travelers alike. Mostly thanks to their allure, landing them on a ranking of the best beaches in Europe. They are also popular with tags used over summer on popular social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok.
Let’s explore 7 of the most popular UK beaches, each promising a unique coastal experience worth sharing with everyone.
Weymouth Beach: Classic seaside splendor
First up we have Weymouth Beach, nestled on the picturesque shores of Dorset. This sandy stretch offers a classic seaside experience, complete with colorful beach huts and gently lapping waves.
Weymouth garnered the 2nd most TikTok views of all European beaches this summer. It falls behind Omaha Beach by some 60 million views, but still sitting a very impressive 40 million views ahead of the next closest beach.
Weymouth’s bay is perfect for building sandcastles, swimming, or simply lounging under the sun. With its bustling esplanade, Weymouth Beach transforms into a lively hub of attractions, from amusement arcades to vibrant eateries. It ensures a delightful day out for visitors of all ages.
Freshwater West: Nature’s hidden treasure
Heading west to the Welsh county of Pembrokeshire, Freshwater West awaits as a hidden gem for those seeking rugged beauty and unspoiled landscapes. Known for its wild Atlantic waves, this beach is a paradise for surfers and adventure seekers.
Although not particularly popular on Instagram, Freshwater West ranks 5th overall for TikTok views, with more than 12 million. With its vast expanse of sand, dunes and rock formations, Freshwater West offers a unique blend of tranquility and excitement that’s sure to capture the imagination. Are you tempted yet?
Horsey Beach: Seals and serenity
Moving north to Norfolk, Horsey Beach presents a serene escape brimming with natural wonders. Beyond its golden sands and crashing waves, this beach is famed for its resident grey seal colony.
During the pupping season, the beach becomes a haven for seal watching, providing a heartwarming spectacle for visitors. Despite this, its tags were only viewed on TikTok 1.8 million times over the summer.
Woolacombe Beach: North Devon’s coastal jewel
Venturing to North Devon, Woolacombe Beach offers a quintessential British seaside experience with a touch of grandeur. Its three miles of soft sands and rolling waves provide ample space for beach sports, sunbathing and leisurely strolls.
Coming in at just over half a million TikTok views, it is nonetheless popular on Instagram, being the second most popular UK beach according to Instagram tags this summer.
New Quay Beach: A Welsh coastal retreat
Heading to the shores of Wales, New Quay Beach enchants visitors with its town atmosphere and breathtaking coastal vistas. Nestled within Cardigan Bay, this beach is a prime location for spotting bottlenose dolphins and seals, viewed 790 000 times on TikTok this summer.
Polzeath Beach: Surfing paradise in Cornwall
Venturing further south to Cornwall, Polzeath Beach emerges as a mecca for surf enthusiasts and beach lovers alike. This sandy haven is renowned for its consistent waves and vibrant surf culture.
As you ride the waves or simply soak in the coastal beauty, Polzeath’s vibrant energy, relaxed vibe and iconic landscapes netted it only half a million TikTok views this summer, but that only means fewer influencers to get in your way.
Langland Bay: A glamorous seaside haven
Concluding our journey in Swansea, Langland Bay exudes a touch of elegance and sophistication. This sheltered bay offers a haven for sun worshippers, kayakers and paddleboarders against the backdrop of dramatic cliffs and azure waters.
Its blend of natural beauty and urban comforts make Langland Bay a popular destination, sitting at the 48th most popular beach overall according to its social media tag usage when compared to the rest of Europe’s beaches.
From the classic charm of Weymouth Beach to the wild allure of Freshwater West, the UK’s coastal treasures offer an array of captivating experiences. As you explore these beaches, you’ll discover a blend of natural beauty, vibrant energy and unique activities.
So, grab your camera, soak in the sun and embark on an journey through the UK’s most sought-after coastal getaways.