Award Winning Beaches

Who doesn’t love a day at the beach?  From miles of award-winning sandy beaches and bustling fishing harbours to hidden coastal coves and delicious fish and chips, visit the Yorkshire Coast and enjoy over 100 miles of stunning coastline.

Blue Flag Award-Winning Beaches

Don’t forget to get out your bucket & spade and pack a picnic.  And with four of Yorkshire’s beaches achieving the Blue Flag award, you can be sure of the highest standards for your fun day out.

Blue Flag is a prestigious, international award scheme which acts as a guarantee to visitors that a beach or marina they are visiting is one of the best in the world.  It’s awarded to coastal destinations which have achieved the highest quality in water, facilities, safety, environmental education and management.


Hornsea beach has a newly developed promenade along the landward side. To the north can be seen the picturesque Flamborough Headland; stretching away to the south, the golden sands of the Holderness coast. 

Scarborough North Bay

North Bay is a sandy beach with rocky outcrops to the north which become isolated at high tide and provide rock pool areas at low tide. To the south, there is a flat sandy area which leads onto rock armour and continues around the headland to South Bay. The main road around the headland runs parallel to the beach with ample parking provided.

Whitby West Cliff

Whitby is a sandy and rocky beach backed by cliffs, usually favoured by the younger generation. Whitby was the home of Captain James Cook and has welcomed visitors to its sandy shores for hundreds of years.

Bridlington North Beach

Bridlington North is a sand/shingle beach loved by generations, with its rock pools and outstanding promenades. From the beach you can look out across Bridlington Bay to the breathtaking site of historic importance, the high chalk cliffs of Flamborough Headland which is the nesting site for thousands of seabirds and the only mainland nesting site of the gannet in the UK. 

Quality Coast Awards

Fifteen of Yorkshire’s beaches have also scooped Keep Britain Tidy’s prestigious Quality Coast Awards for being great places to visit. This recognises and rewards beaches achieving the highest standards of beach management (e.g. the best cleanliness and facilities available).

Beach managers are provided with a three year action plan to identify any areas which may require improvement and help maintain the infrastructure currently in place to manage the beach.

This annual award runs during the bathing season (May to September). The 2011 award winners are shown below.

East Yorkshire


Barmston: retaining its Quality Coast Award with over 2 km of long clear sands, Barmston is the perfect beach for relaxing, playing, walking and a haven for wildlife enthusiasts.

Bridlington North Beach

Bridlington North Beach: sand and shingle beach backed against the impressive Flamborough cliffs. Surrounded by wide promenades, kids will love the traditional amusement halls, boat and fairground rides.

Bridlington South

Bridlington South: overlooking Bridlington Bay, the golden sands to the south extend right down to Spurn Point at the mouth of the River Humber.

Danes Dyke

Danes Dyke: on the south side of the dramatic Flamborough Headland, an impressive 1km stretch of sand, striking white pebbles and rock pools, bound by imposing cliffs to the east and west. There are nature trails which run through Danes Dyke Local Nature Reserve.


Just south of Bridlington, and much quieter, the sands here are clean, flat and extensive, especially at low tides, and perfect for exploring.

South Landing

Located on the south side of the magnificent Flamborough Headland overlooking Bridlington Bay, South Landing beach is a beautiful expanse of sand and white pebbles.


A beautiful expanse of golden sand that is backed by dunes and low cliffs, perfect to escape from the the hustle and bustle of nearby Bridlington.

North Yorkshire

Cayton Bay

Backed by cliffs, quiet beach much favoured by surfers and windsurfers, with WWII fortifications adding historical interest.


A glorious wide stretch of golden sand. Set in a sweeping bay, the beach is protected by the rocky grandeur of Filey Brigg, a haven for a variety of birds and wildlife.

Robin Hood’s Bay

Twisting, turning cobbled streets fall away to the sea of this once smuggler’s paradise. Hunt for fossils and fascinating marine life in rockpools at low tide.

Runswick Bay

A small sheltered beach with rock pools either side of the bay. The beach is in front of a picture-postcard village where the houses seem to be clinging to the steep hillside. Red-roofed cottages, sheltered from the winds by the crag of Lingrow Knowle, cascade down the cliffs to the seafront.


A small, picturesque beach situated on Yorkshire’s heritage coastline. It’s a popular haunt with fossil collectors and fishing enthusiasts. An ideal playground for the family with the beck providing safe paddling and boating for children of all ages.

Scarborough North Bay

A sandy family beach backed by hills and cliffs. Scarborough Castle dominates the skyline overlooking the beach – and a miniature railway running right along the bay.

Scarborough South Bay

A large sandy bay with good facilities, child friendly amenities and is popular with families.

Whitby West Cliff

This beach offers something for everyone: clean waters for those who like a paddle; fascinating rock pools for those interested in the local marine life; spectacular cliffs steeped in geological history for visiting explorers; and clean sandy beaches for those who just like to relax in the sunshine and soak up the atmosphere.

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