When visiting the 1500 square kilometres that amasses to London, the last thing you’d think of doing in this landlocked city is visiting a beach.
Whilst London is known for its riveting entertainment and an (almost) endless amount of activities, one thing it sorely lacks is a real coastline. But, believe it or not, there are still plenty of opportunities to take a dip with countless lidos and lakes right here in and around London.
Better still, great hotels like the Park Grand Lancaster Gate offer guests easy access to these city escapes and, with plenty of restaurants near Lancaster Gate tube station, you’ll be able to get fed and watered before heading out for a day in the sun.
So, what are you waiting for? Let’s explore classic British beaches and charming coastal towns. We can smell the sea air already.
Just an hour outside of London Victoria, Brighton is one of the main tourist hotspots on the South Coast.
Popular as a weekend break for Londoners, Brighton’s pebble promenade is a bright beacon of beach bars and funfairs. With a quieter coast stretching into the neighbouring town of Hove, Brighton offers relaxing shores and late-night entertainment in equal measure.
Located about fifteen miles outside of Brighton and nestled between Eastbourne and Seaford are the Seven Sisters Chalk Cliffs and tributaries. A part of the South Downs National Park, this beautiful nature reserve is perfect for dog walking and wild coastline rambling.
With nearby Eastbourne offering quick train rides from your luxury accommodation in London, untamed coastlines near the capital don’t get much better than this.
Just an hour and a quarter from Stratford International, Margate is another perfect escape from London.
This quaint town has become a hub for ex-London creatives and boasts a soft-sanded seaside view on the Kentish Coast. With the Turner Contemporary Gallery and the buzzing Dreamland funfair and entertainment venue, Margate has plenty to keep visitors enthralled for the day.
Another South Eastern coastal retreat, this historic seaside town was the focal point for the Norman invasion of 1066 and has a long history behind it. With its coastal castle ruins and dramatic cliff face, the craggy town of Hastings offers much more than just a great sunbathing spot.
Home to a summertime Oyster Festival, Whitstable is a harbour town just outside of Canterbury. With its beautiful bay and idyllic West Beach, Whitstable boasts a shingly promenade and beach huts which make for a quintessential British beach experience.
For sand dunes that stretch for seven miles, this Kent-based beach is the perfect spot for sunbathing and is just a two-hour drive or train journey from London. For spacious family beach outings, Camber Sands is the perfect spot to soak up the summer sun.
During a trip to West Wittering, you’ll find the idyllic Chichester Harbour on one side and the South Downs on the other.
With grassy knolls for picnics and rickety beach huts adding to the rustic charm, West Wittering is just an hour and a half outside of London but can offer you days of joy.
Based in Kent, Botany Bay is a two-hour drive outside of London and gifts visitors with fossil hunting, beautiful inlets and Instagram-worthy sunsets. With its rock pools and diverse wildlife, Botany Bay really is any photographer’s dream.