When planning a fun day at the beach, the last thing on anyone’s mind should be the cleanliness of the water. Unfortunately, this year has seen a heightened awareness of pollution concerns, triggered by a shocking incident where 57 triathlon competitors fell ill with diarrhoea after a swim in the sea. While this may raise alarm bells, there’s a simple solution to ensure your beach day remains enjoyable and safe.
Check Beach Water Quality Before You Go
No need to panic! Before packing your towels and buckets, take a moment to check the water quality of your chosen beach destination. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has made this easy for you with their website, where you can access up-to-date information on beach water quality across the UK.
Top Beach Picks Near Cambridgeshire
Cambridgeshire may be landlocked, but within just a two-hour drive, you can reach some fantastic coastal spots with excellent water quality ratings. Here, we’ve handpicked three of the best for your next seaside day trip.
Brightlingsea – The Hidden Gem
Brightlingsea, a charming coastal town situated between Colchester and Clacton-on-Sea, is a mere 90-minute drive from Cambridge. What makes it special? Since 2018, Brightlingsea has consistently received an ‘excellent’ water quality rating.
Visitors to the area can expect a family-friendly beach, perfect for paddling and swimming. Unlike the more crowded Clacton and Southend beaches, Brightlingsea offers a quieter and more peaceful seaside experience. The picturesque beach is complemented by a delightful promenade and colorful beach huts, making it an ideal destination for families. Beyond the beach, visitors can explore a vineyard, visit a museum, take a ferry ride, or enjoy a scenic walk.
Dovercourt – The Peaceful Family Resort
Another gem in Essex, Dovercourt, is a similar drive away from Cambridge. This tranquil family resort boasts gently shelving sand and shingle beaches, making it perfect for a day out with your loved ones.
Along the promenade, a wide range of family activities awaits, including a skate park, a model yacht pond, and a boating lake. History buffs will appreciate the two cast iron lighthouses, known as Dovercourt Range Lights, which have guided ships on the right course for years. Reviews praise the gorgeous sandy beach, perfect for exploring and walking dogs. Dovercourt’s charm truly comes alive when the tide goes out, revealing an incredible landscape. With ample parking, clean facilities, and a toy box for sandcastle enthusiasts, it’s a destination that caters to all.
Sheringham – A Quaint Fishing Village
Sheringham, a former fishing village with a stony beach, offers a unique coastal experience. During low tide, the beach unveils a stretch of sand and mesmerizing rock pools, providing endless opportunities for exploration and enjoyment.
Sheringham’s rich fishing heritage is still evident today through its museums and murals. The Blue Flag beach is family-friendly and offers scenic walks along the promenade, adorned with a row of colorful beach huts. Visitors can enjoy facilities such as beach hut rentals, showers, and promenade toilets. The town itself boasts an array of cafes, tea rooms, and pubs, ensuring you’re well-refreshed after a day at the beach.
In conclusion, while concerns about water quality may have put a damper on some beachgoers’ spirits, being well-informed can ensure you have a safe and enjoyable day by the seaside. With these top beach picks near Cambridgeshire, you can relax and make the most of your next day trip, knowing that ‘excellent’ water quality awaits you. So, grab your beach gear and get ready for a fantastic seaside adventure!