North Wales is renowned for its beaches. Here are ten of our favourites…
As with most stretches of glorious beach, Talacre can get pretty busy during the height of the summer, but don’t worry because Talacre offers plenty of room for everyone, with miles of golden sand backed by beautiful dunes. The perfect family beach (even the dog is welcome), the area surrounding Talacre a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) meaning that there’s plenty to explore when you get bored of digging sandcastles. The Point of Ayr lighthouse, which was built 1776, is synonymous with Talacre – in fact you’re unlikely to see a picture of the beach without this landmark.
2: Black Rock Sands
If you want to get sporty on the beach, then Black Rock Sands is the destination for you. As well as the usual runners and dog walkers, the lovely flat sands are ideal for cycling so you’ll see plenty of people out and about on two wheels on the impressively wide beach. Unusually, cars are also allowed onto the sand here – although there is a charge in the summer – meaning that it is a great spot for launching motor boats and jet ski’s. Alternatively you can use your vehicle to pack up everything you need for a fantastic day out as you’ll always have it close to hand. Fancy a picnic anyone?
3: Llanddwyn Beach
Llanddwyn beach, on the isle of Anglesey, offers rolling dunes and impressive views of the Snowdonia National Park, Caernarfon and the Llyn Peninsula. Llanddwyn isn’t technically an island as it is attached to the mainland at all but the highest tides, so make sure that you have your tide timetable with you! Llanddwyn is part of the Newborough Warren National Nature Reserve, which is accessed via a path, and the nearby forest has great footpaths – making Llanddwyn beach an ideal destination for walkers.
Barmouth Beach sits on the idyllic west coast in the Snowdonia National Park and has a harbour area crossed by the impressive Barmouth Bridge which marks the beginning of the Mawddach Estuary. The large beach is very popular with families and entertainment, such as donkey rides and bouncy castles, pops up here during the summer. A long promenade is perfect for that afternoon stroll, while the town of Barmouth – with its independent collection of shops, cafes and ice-cream parlours – is just a stones throw away.
Abersoch is a long sandy beach, popular for both sailing and watersports as well as the usual day trippers. Boat trips are available to St Tudwal and Bardsey Island, and sailing events are often held here which make for a fabulous sight. If you fancy really making yourself at home, beach huts can be rented by the day or week, but be aware that there are some restrictions at Abersoch. Firstly there is an area where, between April and September, that dogs are not allowed, and restrictions are enforced near to the beach marked by a series of yellow buoys.
Located on the west shore of Anglesey, Rhosneigr is a Green Coast seaside award winner, meaning that it has been recognised as reaching a very high standard of cleanliness. There’s no complaints to be had on the location front either, with several roads leading directly to the beach, while the slipway allows access for launching small boats. While Rhosneigr is a great family beach, it is also ideal for windsurfing, kite surfing and canoeing when the weather is playing ball.
Located on the Llŷn Peninsula, Porthdinllaen is home to an idyllic beach and, it has been argued, one of the best beach bars in the world. The Ty Coch Inn is located right on Porthdinllaen beach, which is now owned by the National Trust, which means that you can actually sip a pint while digging your toes in the sand putting a whole new spin on the phrase ‘beer garden’. The car-free village runs parallel to the beach, making it ideal for families too.
The stony beach in Llandudno bay provides a whole new aspect to the seaside. While you may not want to lay out your towel and sunbathe on the stony surface, there has never been such a good location for a quick skimming competition. The fabulous promenade runs next to the beach, meaning that you don’t even need to tiptoe over those stones if you don’t want to. The Victorian town of Llandudno is within easy walking distance, while the beach has a large paddling pool at one end and the fabulous pier at the other. You may not be making sandcastles here, but you certainly won’t be short of entertainment…
Dubbed one of the most beautiful beaches in North Wales, Harlech beach sits under the shadow of the magnificent castle of the same name. there is good access from a large car park and, while the soft sand provides a great digging spot for children, the sheers size of it makes Harlech beach an even better place to stretch your legs. And, since it is situated right next to Royal St David’s Golf Club, one of Britain’s finest links course, you could take time to give your arms a work out too.
10: Porth Iago beach
Another Llyn Peninsula gem, Porth Iago is a small cove situated between the headlands of Dinas and Graig Ddu. A pay and display car park is located above the beach, which is reached via a track through Ty Mawr farm. Access to the shore is down a steep sandy path, so it’s not one to be carrying buckets of equipment with you. Dogs are allowed, but they must be in vehicles when passing through the farm. It’s a very sheltered beach, making it good for both sunbathing and swimming. What else could you need?