Discover some of the best UK beaches for seaside activities this spring

With around 11,073 miles of coastline (according to Ordnance Survey), the UK is bursting with beaches. So, picking a shoreline spot to spend spring days by the sea can prove to be a tricky decision. To help you make that all-important choice, we’ve gathered five great National Trust spots for family days out, picnics, watersports and more…

Ravenscar, North Yorkshire
The Cleveland Way is a revered walking route among seasoned hikers and Sunday strollers alike. It’s 110 miles long, but Ravenscar is a good place to start if you’re travelling with children. Take a gentle walk along the clifftops, keeping an eye out for butterflies and birds, before enjoying sweeping views of Robin Hood’s Bay – the perfect place to rest and soak up the sea air. To download a guide to this family-friendly walk, click here.

Photo: National Trust Images/Joe Cornish

Sheringham Park, Norfolk
Dig for worms and search for shrimps and crabs along the shoreline at Sheringham, where marine life abounds. Its tidal pools are only a few kilometres' walk from the main visitor centre, so check tide times and head on down. Find out more here.

Photo: National Trust Images/John Millar

Studland Bay, Dorset
Splashing around in the sea makes for very happy tots, so why not head to the beach at Studland? It’s sheltered and has gently shelving bathing waters, so is suitable even for first-time swimmers. Behind the beach there’s a wildlife-rich heathland for exploring, or stay on the sand and hire one of 50 National Trust beach huts. When tums get hungry, the café at Knoll Beach is ideal for post-swim snacks. Find out more here.

Photo: National Trust Images/David Levenson

Birling Gap, East Sussex
Packing up a picnic and heading to the coast is one of the British summer’s most popular activities. To avoid sandy sandwiches, head to the pebble beach at Birling Gap, which is part of the Seven Sisters chalk cliffs. There are rockpools galore to explore between nibbles and unspoilt ocean views to enjoy, both from the seafront and the clifftop café. Find out more here.

Photo: National Trust Images/Arnhel de Serra

Stackpole, Pembrokeshire
Pembrokeshire is known for being a watersports hotspot. Sessions at Stackpole Quay include sea kayaking and coasteering, which combines cliff jumping, rock traversing and swimming. Afterwards, there’s a choice of two beautiful beaches (Broadhaven South and Barafundle Bay) on which to catch your breath. Find out more here.

Photo: National Trust Images/Robert Morris

Liked this? Take a look at our 10 best child-friendly beaches and 10 best barefoot beaches, or pick up a copy of the magazine.

Liked this? Take a look at our 10 best child-friendly beaches and 10 best barefoot beaches, or pick up a copy of the magazine.