The Best Seaside Towns to Visit Near London

The Best Seaside Towns to Visit Near London

What to do this summer? Most of us have got pretty fed up with sitting in the local park and are yearning for a holiday. With oversees travel looking fairly unlikely this summer, we’re going to have to fall back in love with the Great British Holiday. We’ve got world class beaches, incredible seafood, local wine, beautiful hotels, and sometimes the weathers OK.

There are many, many stunning seaside towns and villages in the UK, many only a couple of hours outside of London, here are some to check out this summer, or summers in the future.

Whitstable, Kent

Oysters at Whitstable

Oysters at Whitstable

What’s Going On?

Biscuit-tin style seaside fishing town with a modern vibe and eclectic community.

Why Visit?

Cobbled streets with colourful boutiques, fresh seafood and beachside oysters, Kent is full of pretty towns and Whitstable is among the best. Its long shingle beach is perfect for walking off a large lobster lunch, the fishing town feels tailor made for long weekend getaways.

Don’t Miss

The Whitstable Fish Market. Right on the quay you can sit and watch the daily catch brough in from the boats to the market, while enjoying a huge variety of the freshest seafood. Sit in or takeaway fresh lobsters and crabs to eat at home.

Get There

An hour and a half from London Victoria to Whitstable or around an hour and a half by car.

Aldeburgh, Norfolk

Aldeburgh Beach

Aldeburgh Beach

What’s Going On?

A seaside festival town with creative roots.

Why Visit?

The home of British composer Benjamin Britten as well as other famous cultural names, Aldeburgh hosts many festivals in celebration of music and the arts. A high street lined with shops selling local produce and pretty beachfront cottages, there’s plenty here for a satisfying day out, as well as two of the voted for best fish and chip shops in England.

Don’t Miss

The Aldeburgh Festival. Dedicated to the celebration of classical music, the festival usually takes places every June. Take a look at their website for this years revised plans.

Get There

An hour and 55 minutes by train from London Liverpool Street Station to Saxmundham, then a local bus or taxi, or around 2 and a half hours by car.

Brancaster, Norfolk

Brancaster Staithe

Brancaster Staithe

What’s Going On?

A stunning stretch of North Norfolk coastline that comes alive in the summer months.

Why Visit?

Filled with beautiful places to stay from beachside campsites to spacious villas, Brancaster Village is one of the driest in the country, making is perfect for sailing, birdwatching and beach picnics. An area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, why not rent a kayak or a boat and travel over the Scolt Head Island from Brancaster Staithe. The perfect place for relaxation and adventure.

Don’t Miss

Dinner at the White Horse in Brancaster Staithe. The award-winning restaurant utilises local produce, making the most of shellfish from the village fishermen. Try and book a table on their sun-soaked terrace, watching the sun go down as the boats sail past, with great views of the marshes.

Get There

2 hour train to King’s Lynn from London Liverpool Street then a local bus, or 2 and a half hour drive from London.

Deal, Kent

Deal in Kent

Deal in Kent

What’s Going On?

A beautifully preserved Victorian seafront steeped in Maritime history with a modern edge and buzzing bars

Why Visit?

This town manages to find the perfect balance between picturesque beach town and vibrant evening scene, smaller than Whitstable but without the over-trendyness of Margate. Great food and one of the most beautiful beaches in Kent, Deal is full of waterside pubs and micro-pubs selling local craft ales.

Don’t Miss

La Pinardier Wine Bar offers a little slice of Bordeux in Kent with live music and a certain joie de vivre.

Get There

Only an hour and 20 minutes by train from St Pancras or 2 hours by car.

Clovelly, Devon

Clovelly Village

Clovelly Village

What’s Going On?

A privately-owned, ancient fishing village offering pure escapism, stunning views and car-free cobbled streets. The English equivalent of a Greek village.

Why Visit?

A rare gem in these modern times, Clovelly favours the tranquillity of a bygone era. Unusually the village, with a population of just over 400, is privately owned, and has been associated with only three families since the middle of the 13th century, preserving its beautiful surroundings.

Don’t Miss

The famous village donkeys. The village is steep and car-free, so you’ll still see man powered sledges transporting goods around. Donkeys were also traditionally used and still wander freely around the town, giving rides to children in the summer months.

Get There

A 4-hour train from London Paddington then a local taxi or a 4 hour drive.

Lymington, Hampshire

Lymington Harbour

Lymington Harbour

What’s Going On?

A place of yacht-spotting, cobbled streets and local breweries on England’s Southernmost coastline.

Why Visit?

A great place to take to the water, Lymington’s well stocked harbour is its biggest attraction. Hop on board one of the many sailing or fishing excursions or just sit on the quay, pint in hand, and pick your favourite boat.

Don’t Miss

The annual Lymington Seafood Festival. More than 90 food traders set up stalls for two days of England’s finest seafood and live jazz.

 

Make sure you check that any of the establishments in this article are open before planning a visit.