The Somerset Coast, Somerset

The seaside isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Somerset, but what a surprise the Somerset Coast is! It runs along much of the length of the Bristol Channel and is diverse in that you’ll find almost every type of beach imaginable on this coastline, from golden sands and pebbly bays to peaceful harbours and wildlife rich wetlands. Perhaps one of the best ways to see just how varied it is by walking the West Somerset Coast Path, but if that’s not practical, opt for a day out to wherever suits you.

If you like a more traditional day at the seaside with deckchairs and donkey rides and fish and chips then Weston-Super-Mare, Burnham-On-Sea and Minehead will suit you; they all have a big expanse of flat golden sands so take your bucket and spade and be prepared to roll up your trousers legs and pop a knotted handkerchief on your head – oh, and make sure you’ve got plenty of loose change for the amusement arcades. Blue Anchor, further down the coast is another good sandy beach so it’s great for a family day out, and it’s where the West Somerset Railway terminates so you can have a pootle through the countryside on a steam train if the mood takes you.

If you like quieter beaches there’s actually quite a choice on the Somerset coast; Brean and Berrow are good for sports on and off the sands, but at low tide there are dangerous mud flats which you need to steer clear of, and both beaches have a lot of caravan and campsites close by so they certainly aren’t so quiet in the summer.  Sand Bay and Donniford are great for dog walks, more rugged, more wild, but wonderful for a stroll along the shore enjoying the elements.

Fossil hunters should head for Kilve, a rocky beach with fascinating rockpools where you can find crabs and sea anemones. St Audrie’s and East Quantoxhead can be wild and windy but they have so much character – the former has waterfalls cascading down the cliffs, the latter wave cut platforms and towering striated cliffs. Watchet and Porlock are good for just sitting and watching the world go by, Bossington is usually very peaceful and one for the nature lovers, being backed by wildlife rich salt marshes. What a choice!

All information correct at the time of writing

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