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Gradings are on water quality alone.

Croyde Bay

Good to Excellent

Croyde Beach lies  between the headlands of Baggy Point and Saunton Down. More than half a mile of fine sands and extensive dunes make this beach  understandably popular with families. One of the best surfing beaches in the South West with high dramatic waves making this a surfers paradise. There is also a beach bar.

No dogs at any time

Ilfracombe, Tunnels Beaches


There is a large tidal swimming pool idea; for children who can enjoy themselves  in safety.   There are views of Lundy Island and South Wales.

 No dogs at any time

Woolacombe Village


A surfer's paradise, Woolacombe beach has two miles of magnificent golden sand backed by sandy hills and the Woolacombe Downs.  Deckchairs may be hired and lifeguards are on regular duty. Speed boats and jet skis are prohibited.   First class  facilities are available for surfing, windsurfing, sailing and sea canoeing.

dogs restricted


Good to Excellent

Shingle beach popular with some surfers.

no restrictions on dogs

Barricane Beach

Good to Excellent

The shell beach  in a cove between Woolacombe and Mortehoe. Famous for cowries and other sea shells brought in on the Gulf Stream. Safe for bathing and swimming, with rock pools  and  sand at low tide.

dogs on leads may to september

Combe Martin

Good to Excellent (not river)

At high tide there is not much to see but when the tide goes out there are large rock pools to explore and a stretch of level sand. The sea within the bay is free of dangerous currents and suitable for bathing.

No dogs may to september


Good to Excellent

Putsborough Beach

At the other end of the beach to Woolacombe. Putsborough is a good surfing beach.  Easy access from the car park on the cliffs overlooking the beach.

Dog restrictions april to october

Saunton Sands


Three miles of flat sand backed by massive sand dunes. Excellent surfing beach and ideal for all water sports. Lifeguards, wheelchair access, shop and toilet.

dog restrictions

Ilfracombe Capstone

Poor  to Excellent

no dog restrictions

Ilfracombe Hele

Poor to Excellent

A safe shingle beach popular with canoeists. There are a few amusements and a tide filled children's swimming pool.

no dogs may to september


Poor to Excellent

dog restrictions may to september

Other Beaches

Unmeasured Quality

Wild Pear Bay, Combe Martin

A naturist's beach.  Access difficult for young children and the infirm

Lee Bay

Lee Bay

A beautiful cove with oak woods growing to the very edge of the cliffs. The tide is extremely strong making bathing  dangerous.   Some sand at low tide.

no dogs may to september

Woody Bay

A beautiful and sheltered bay. Through the wooded steep cliffs, a stream rushes down  to the beach below. There is a small car park next to the road and the path zigzags down through the woods to the beach. The beach is rocky with large pebbles and shingle.  Reputed to be safe for swimming but in any case the setting makes it a wonderful place to relax. 

no dog restrictions

Please check on current regulations