TripAdvisor has revealed its annual list of the best beaches in the world…

Words: Ginny Weeks

Woolacombe Beach in north Devon has today been voted one of the best beaches in the world by travellers on TripAdvisor.

As well as beating famous coastlines in Turkey, Florida and Costa Rica to be voted the 13th best beach globally, Woolacombe Beach came fourth across Europe and made the top spot in the UK.

One reviewer recently described Woolacombe as ”Three miles of heaven. In wild weather, it is beautiful. In good weather, it is a delight.”

Let’s not forget the other beaches that did well too – including Weymouth Beach in Dorset, which was named second best beach in the UK and eighth in Europe. Wales’ Rhossili Bay took third place in the UK and eleventh in Europe.

Cornwall didn’t let its neighbour Devon take all the limelight. It scooped the most number of awards of any county in the UK with four winning beaches, including Porthminster Beach in St Ives (fifth), Perranporth Beach in Perranporth (sixth), Fistral Beach in Newquay (seventh) and Godrevy Head in Hayle (22nd).

Patricia Yates, Director of Strategy and Communications at VisitBritain said, “With a coastline longer than Brazil’s, Britain abounds with beautiful beaches – from great stretches of golden sand to discrete little coves. It’s fantastic to see this natural beauty recognised by travellers and shows that our coastline can easily compete with some of the world’s most popular beach destinations.’’

TripAdvisor’s Traveller Choice Beaches Awards winners

Top 10 beaches in the UK

1.    Woolacombe Beach, Woolacombe, Devon

2.    Weymouth Beach, Weymouth, Dorset

3.    Rhossili Bay, Rhossili, Swansea

4.    St. Brelade’s Bay Beach, St. Brelade, Jersey

5.    Porthminster Beach, St Ives, Cornwall

6.    Perranporth Beach, Perranporth, Cornwall

7.    Fistral Beach, Newquay, Cornwall

8.    Luskentyre, Isle of Harris

9.    Hengistbury Head, Bournemouth, Dorset

10.  Sandbanks, Poole, Dorset

Top beaches in Europe

1.    Rabbit Beach, Lampedusa, Italy

2.    Playa de Ses Illetes, Formentera, Spain

3.    Elafonissi  Beach, Elafonissi, Greece

4.    Woolacombe Beach, Woolacombe, Devon, United Kingdom

5.    Iztuzu Beach, Dalyan, Turkey

6.    Fig Tree Bay, Protaras, Cyprus

7.    Cala Rossa, Favignana, Italy

8.    Weymouth Beach, Weymouth, Dorset, United Kingdom

9.    Eggremni Beach, Lefkada Greece

10. Playa de Bolonia, Tarifa, Spain

11. Rhossili Bay, Rhossili, Swansea, Wales

14. St. Brelade’s Bay Beach, St Brelade, Jersey

18. Porthminster Beach, St Ives, Cornwall, United Kingdom

Top beaches in the world

1.    Baia do Sancho, Fernando de Noronha, Brazil

2.    Grace Bay, Providenciales

3.    Rabbit Beach, Lampedusa, Italy

4.    Playa Paraiso Beach, Cayo Largo, Caribbean

5.    Playa de Ses Illetes, Formentera, Spain

6.    Anse Lazio, Praslin Island, Seychelles

7.    White Beach, Boracay, Philippines

8.    Flamenco Beach, Culebra, Caribbean

9.    Whitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Island, Australia

10.  Elafonissi  Beach, Elafonissi, Greece

13.  Woolacombe Beach, Woolacombe, Devon, United Kingdom


The TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice awards are based on reviews and ratings from global travellers.

For the full list click here.



Trevor Stanbury, Chairman of the North Devon Marketing Bureau: “It’s fantastic to see North Devon’s wonderful beaches getting the recognition they deserve with a coveted TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Award. Woolacombe Beach is already a firm favourite with both locals and travellers alike and we look forward to welcoming more visitors to experience its beauty throughout 2015.”