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Top family friendly beaches in Devon and Cornwall

Lydia Mansi

Whilst we love exotic, foreign holidays (and the guaranteed sunshine!) there is nothing quite like a British beach when the sun is shining... we have been escaping the city to the Devon and Cornwall coastline for over a decade - here's a round-up of our top family friendly beaches...

Porthcurnick beach

Image copyright: Hidden Hut

Image copyright: Hidden Hut

Gerrans Bay, particularly at the Rosevine Hotel, were some of the first family holidays we took when our kids were small. The hotel is an amazing 'New England' style villa, right at the top of the beach - with a self-catering/hotel hydrid set-up. It means you've got the flexibility of a kitchenette in your apartment - yet all the luxury of a boutique hotel (restaurant, room service, indoor pool). It also means Porthcurnick beach is your back yard, including the famous, Hidden Hut - look out for their evening events - 'Lobster & Chips' is a winner and watch the sun go down with some of the best seafood in the South West.

Hope Cove - by Lala & Bea co-founder, Katie Greatrix

Family friendly beaches Devon

The dramatic coastline of South Devon with all its hidden coves and caramel sandy beaches has long been our 'go-to' for British summer hols. Swerve the mayhem in Salcombe and Dartmouth in the summer months and head to Hope Cove.
"It reminds me of my childhood weeks of playing on the beach at my grandparents in North Devon. South Devon is a fraction closer to us and we have just fallen in love with the little cove - heading back for a dreamy 10 days with friends and family every year since the children were babies -  it now feels like home from home, here are my top 3 tips:

Head to Bantham beach - great for bodyboarding and fab food trucks (if you don't quite have time to make a picnic!)  Note to self: £6 parking charge as it's privately owned! £££

Beach house at south Milton is great for food and icecreams - it's a National Trust beach so parking is free if you are a member always a bonus! 

We make an annual pilgrimage to Cranchs, the infamous sweet shop in Salcombe - one of the children's treats of the holiday!" - Katie 

Mawgan Porth

Mawgan Porth beach

Pre-kids, we loved escaping to the amazing eco Scarlet Hotel (we now stay next door at the Bedruthan Steps hotel which is equally fab). Mawgan Porth beach itself is everything you'd want in a family beach - great surf for teens and oodles of clean sand for littlies. The beach is vast so never feels too crowded, although get there early for any hope of parking. The foodie mecca of Padstow (or Pad-stein as the locals call it due to the presence of not 1, but 5 Rick Stein eateries) is just a pebble-throw away.


branscombe beach jurassic coast devon

Situated slap-bang in the middle of the Jurassic Coast (if you've got dinosaur mad kids, the Seaton Jurassic centre 10 mins down the coast is a must) feels just a bit Enid Blyton. Take the windy lanes down through the pretty thatched village and end up on the long, pebbled beach. There's easy access from the car park and a lovely green in front of the quaint Sea Shanty cafe - always quieter than Sidmouth or Lyme Regis and the clearest water, too.

TAKE 3: Beach essentials

Here are 3 Lala & Bea must-haves, for any beach holiday: