“Staycations” have suffered a bit of an unfair reputation hit in the last couple of years. People seem to look down on them, as if to say that holidays taking place right here in the British Isles can’t possibly be as fun or adventurous as those that are abroad.
I’m here to disagree with that notion – there are loads of places almost on your doorstep that make for fantastic destinations, for the whole family to enjoy. And even better, plenty of them are great beachy spots, meaning you can soak up the sun while the kids splash about in the sea and build sand castles.
And what’s the ultimate advantage of a UK holiday? You don’t have to spend ages in departures and suffer through a couple hours on a plane with the kids! Compared to that, a car journey to the beach is simply bliss.
1. The Isle of Wight
This one is the closest on the list to being “abroad” – it’s a ferry ride away, after all! It’s perfect for a beach holiday, with seemingly endless miles of golden sands just begging to be explored. The place feels lovely and old-fashioned, a traditional beach resort.
With plenty of nice restaurants and child-friendly pubs, it’s a good place for foodie families, and the few rocky beaches are great for a spot of rockpooling. Make sure to visit Carisbrooke Castle.
Yorkshire is a foodie’s paradise, with a reputation as the best place in the country for fantastic foods and delectable drinks. So if you and your family enjoy good food, it’s definitely the place to be. Scarborough is definitely a favourite among families – it has a great beach, some fun penny arcades, and even a Sea Life Centre.
For Dracula-themed spookiness, rock pools and a beautiful Abbey, you’ll want to visit Whitby (the setting for much of Bram Stoker’s novel), while Robin Hood’s Bay offers up the opportunity for a bit of fossil hunting.
Devon has some of the finest beaches in the country, and Ilfracombe and Woolacombe are two of the best, perfect for sand castles, sun bathing and paddling about. It’s good for surfers, too – even if there aren’t any waves, you’ll be able to find them all day long at the waverider at Woolacombe Holiday Parks.
Once you’ve worked up an appetite, pop into Plymouth for a cream tea. Delicious!
Cornwall has always been a favourite destination for beach-lovers, and it’s easy to see why. Rock pooling, pasties, golden sands, crystal waters, surfing lessons… Cornwall has it all.
And that’s without even mentioning Land’s End, the Eden Project, the Minack Open Air Theatre…
The Pembrokeshire Coast is the only coastal National Park, so you know you’re in for something a bit special here. Active families will love Pembrokeshire, as there are ample opportunities for cycling, walking, climbing and water sports.
Take a boat trip around the coast for beautiful views of the area and chances to see the local marine life, and make sure to check out the Tenby Dinosaur Park.