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Beach Life

Updated: Jan 26, 2021

Here is our guide to our favourite beaches in this corner of north Cornwall. Find the best beach to meet your needs, then relax and enjoy. Choose from beaches with eateries in close proximity, dog-friendly beaches or the best surfing locations.

Crooklets Beach

Sandy at low tide, lifeguards 1st May to end September. Great family beach. Café, public conveniences, deckchair/windbreak hire. Plenty of parking, facilities for wheelchairs. No dogs Easter to October.

Summerleaze Beach

Sandy at all tides, lifeguards 1st May to end September. Fabulous family beach. One of the few remaining sea pools in the country – excellent for young children who are less confident in the waves. Lifeguards, public conveniences, deckchair/windbreak hire. Licensed bistro/café. Plenty of parking. Dogs allowed all year, but must be on leads from 10am to 6pm.

Middle Beach

Between Crooklets and Summerleaze. A good family beach at low tide. Dogs allowed all year.

Widemouth Bay

Sandy at all tides. Wide beach, excellent for a gentle stroll, families, surfing etc. Café, public conveniences, deckchair/windbreak hire. Fairly reasonable parking available. Lifeguards 1st May to end September. No dogs Easter to October.

Black Rock Sands

A good sandy beach adjacent to Widemouth Bay. Dogs allowed all year.


A lovely rural beach. Fairly rocky at most tides. Lifeguards 1st May end September. No facilities. Limited parking. Dogs allowed all year.


A good, sandy beach, excellent for families. Lifeguards 1st May to end September. Café/bistro, public conveniences, reasonable parking. Dogs allowed all year. Two mile walk at low tide to Bude beaches.


A stony, truly rural beach, no lifeguards, no facilities, very remote.

Crackington Haven

A sandy beach at low tide. Good rock pooling. Lifeguards 1st May to end September. Café, public conveniences, good parking. Pub just off the beach. Dogs not allowed Easter to October.


A rural beach. Good rock pooling. No lifeguards. Public conveniences. Dogs allowed all year.

Upton Beach

A climb down to a rocky beach. Secluded, dogs allowed all year. No lifeguards, no facilities.


A fabulous beach at low tide. Long, meandering climb down and even longer climb back up! Not suitable for young children or elderly. No lifeguards, no facilities. Limited parking at top of the cliff. Fantastic if you are feeling energetic enough to go down and back up! This is a partial nudist area.

For further details of life-guarded beaches visit the RNLI and to find out which of our beautiful beaches welcome dogs and when, click here.

Once you've chosen the beach that suits you best, now's the perfect time to get out on the water. The rugged landscape of Bude and north Cornwall offers a wide and exciting range of naturally-accessible, high-octane activities. North Cornwall’s waters play host to many on-water activities, from surfing and swimming to canoeing, SUP-ing and coasteering. Whatever water activity you choose, it's always best to learn from the experts. Local schools and centres can provide equipment and tuition and that all-important water safety knowledge.

Local surf schools:

Other local water sports centres:

Bude is also home to the incredible Bude Sea Pool. This semi-natural amenity thathas provided a haven for free and safe bathing and other water-based activities since the 1930s. Access to Bude Sea Pool is unrestricted and free of any admission.

And for some bygone beach charm, why not hire one of the many stylish Beach Huts in Bude. They range in size from small to extra-large, with some fully accessible so perfect for families and those with limited mobility. Please note the beach huts are intended for daytime use only and do not have electric or water services.

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