Best beaches for family walks

With far-reaching views and golden sands to play on, the coast is the perfect place for a family stroll. Why not kick off your shoes and experience barefoot walking - it's a great way to get closer to nature, and it's also one of our '50 things to do before you're 11 ¾'.

Picture of Dunwich walkers enjoying a day out in the sun....
Walking trail

Dunwich Heath and Beach, Suffolk 

With its shingle and sand beach, scenic coastal trails and rich wildlife, Dunwich is ideal for walkers. This trail will take you round the perimeter of the heath, which is covered with a patchwork of purple and yellow heather throughout the summer months. It's the perfect habitat for species such as Dartford warblers, nightjars, and woodlark, and if you pause for a while in the Sea Watch Hut you might be able to spot porpoises and seals.

Walkers and their dog sit in a meadow at Ravenscar looking out over Robin Hood's Bay

Ravenscar, North Yorkshire 

Starting at the small coastal village of Ravenscar, this gentle walk follows part of the Cleveland way along the spectacular clifftops of the North Yorkshire Coast. During the summer there are usually plenty of butterflies and birds to spot, but remember to watch your step as adders can often be seen basking on sunny paths. Why not head down to Robin Hood's Bay at the end of the walk to see what you can discover in the rockpools?

Visitors walking towards Souter Lighthouse and The Leas
Walking trail

Souter Lighthouse and the Leas 

Opened in 1871, Souter Lighthouse remains an iconic beacon of the North East coast. This easy 2-mile walk takes you alongside the lighthouse, and also skirts the edge of the Whitburn Coastal Park, a former colliery turned wildlife haven.

Quiet Bembridge harbour water with St Helens Duver on the far side
Walking trail

St Helens Duver, Isle of Wight 

This four mile walk has easy access but still crosses varied terrain, taking in sandy beaches and dunes, rockpools, and coastal woods. From busy Bembridge Harbour the walk ambled along the rocky seashore, before climbing up inland. You’ll return via the picturesque village of St Helens, where you’ll find a handy pub and restaurant for refreshments.

Visitors on the rocks at Morte Point, Devon
Walking trail

Woolacombe, Devon 

Stretch your legs on this walk around Morte Point. When you reach the very tip of the headland, take 5 minutes to scramble up the spiky rock formation that looks like the back of a Stegosaurus. Bring some binoculars as you may see Atlantic grey seals, which play close to the shore - they pop up for air every 15 minutes so take a seat and keep an eye out.