Woolacombe Beach – Review for families

It's one of the UK's best family beaches, but is it right for you and your little ones? Use our day out guide to help you decide

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What is it?

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A 3-mile long beach often touted as one of the best family beaches in the world. Find it in Woolacombe, North Devon.

Best for:

Toddlers & Preschool / 5 – 8 / 9 – 12

OK for:

Babies / 12 +

Cost

The beach is free, but parking will set you back approximately £8 a day.

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What’s on offer

Woolacombe Beach has everything you could want from a beach. For little ones who like to play and create, they can build sandcastles or explore the rock pools, and for little ones who love sea life can keep an eye out for seals ashore. Adventure lovers and children who like to stay active will enjoy the wide range of water sports you can do at Woolacombe, including swimming, surfing, canoeing and body boarding. You can even take a stroll on horseback across the beach, if you like.

The beach has facilities including public toilets, a café, a handy beach shop, nearby parking and a play area towards the back of the beach for young children. During peak periods, including all school holidays, lifeguards are present from 10am to 6pm 7 days a week.

Highlights

It’s a nice, sandy beach, unlike Tunnels Beaches, which is covered in shale. That means the kids can amuse themselves with sandcastles, maybe even burying mum or dad in the sand. It’s long, a pleasant walk with lovely views.

It feels really safe, despite how busy it is. The facilities are clean, which is almost unheard of for a big public beach. The dogs are gone so unless you’re a pet owner, you can relax and not worry about your children as they explore the world around them.

Finally – rock pools! Children love going for a fish in the rock pools. TripAdvisor users agreed that its what their children really loved about this beach. Bring a little net along with you.

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What to watch out for

– No dogs allowed on the busiest, family area of the beach. There is an area where dogs on a lead can play, but this will obviously be filled with lots of other dogs. This is a family beach and unless you want to be sectioned off, don’t bring your dog. This is great for parents who don’t want the animals near their children.

– You can’t park overnight to get a decent space in the morning. Nice try!

– Seagulls are a bit too friendly. Protect all snacks.

MFM tips:

– Bring towels, wet wipes, a little fishing net for rock-pooling, buckets/spades and lots of sunscreen, as well as a picnic, water bottles and snacks.

– Use one of the best children’s sunscreens to keep them protected whilst they play!

– Don’t forget to explore the rest of Woolacombe, which is a village containing around 20 shops and some lovely country pubs.

What the owners say

Visit the official Woolacombe Beach website

Get more out of your trip to North Devon….

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Milky Way Adventure Park
Watermouth Castle
Tunnels Beaches
Clovelly Village
Lundy Island
Lynton & Lynmouth Cliff Railway

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