10 Best Seaside Photography Spots in the UK

Marianne Stenger
22nd June 2022

Summer is finally here, and it’s the perfect time to plan a few seaside getaways so you can put your landscape or even street photography skills into action. 

While far-flung tropical beaches are always a thrill to visit, you don’t actually have to venture very far to find picturesque seaside locations. The UK has thousands of miles of coastline complete with gorgeous scenery, idyllic villages and charming beaches just waiting to be explored and photographed. 

Need some inspiration? Here are some of our favourite seaside spots for photography, from charming Runswick Bay in North Yorkshire to Cornwall’s stunning Kynance Cove.

 

1. Whitby, North Yorkshire 

As one of North Yorkshire’s most popular seaside destinations, Whitby is best known for its connection to Bran Stoker’s classic novel - Dracula. 

The town’s Gothic culture is evident in its lamplit cobbled streets, the iconic Whitby 199 stone steps, and the well-preserved cliff top ruins of Whitby Abbey. 

Another must-see for photographers is the magnificent 30-foot Falling Foss Waterfall, tucked away in the ancient woodland of Sneaton Forest.

2. Sidmouth, Devon 

Located along the beautiful Jurassic Coast, Sidmouth is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with over 500 listed buildings. 

In addition to ancient streets and historical architecture, Sidmouth boasts a number of award-winning sandy beaches, which are surrounded by photo-worthy red cliffs that make for a striking contrast against the rolling green hills of Sid Valley.

3. Nefyn, Gwynedd, Wales 

Nefyn is an attractive seaside village located on the northwest coast of Gwynedd, Wales. 

The area is best known for Snowdonia National Park, and Nefyn’s sandy beaches and crystal clear waters are flanked by the impressive Llyn Peninsula, known as ‘Snowdon’s Arm.’ 

Other nearby highlights for photographers include the Llyn Coastal Path and Bardsey Island or ‘the Island of 20,000 Saints,’ which is a bird photographer’s paradise with over 300 bird species. 

4. Kynance Cove, Cornwall

Located on the Lizard Peninsula, Kynance Cove is one of the most photographed spots in Cornwall, and for good reason.

The area is best known for its stunning white sandy beaches, turquoise waters and towering rock stacks. During low tide, you can explore a number of caves and 

Due to its unique composition of geology, Lizard Peninsula supports a variety of unusual plants, flowers and birds, including Puffins, Peregrines, and the rare Cornish Clough.

5. Lulworth Cove, Dorset

With its scenic beaches, clear blue waters and rock pools at low tide, Lulworth Cove in Dorset is definitely worth a visit. 

The surrounding coastline is also part of the famous Jurassic Coast, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a popular location for hikers due to the South West Coast Path national trail. 

Nearby landmarks to photograph include Stair Hole and the iconic Durdle Door, a natural limestone arch that stands out impressively against the beautiful Dorset coast. 

6. Tenby Harbour, Wales 

Tenby Harbour is one of the best known seaside towns in Wales due to its fantastic beaches and picturesque harbour which makes for beautiful photographs. 

Known as the ‘Jewel in the crown of Pembrokeshire,’ Tenby Harbour is surrounded by rows of colourful houses and there are plenty of twisting alleyways and mediaeval pubs to explore. 

Along with swimming, the area is also perfect for seaside activities like canoeing, boating and angling.

7. Lymington, Hampshire

Lymington is located on the beautiful coast of Hampshire and boasts quaint cobbled roads, picture-perfect period houses and cottages, as well as two large marinas where sailboats and yachts come to dock. 

Along with stunning coastal views and 19th century open water sea baths, Lymington is surrounded by the New Forest National Park where you can enjoy lush forest trails and sightings of free roaming animals like ponies, donkeys and sheep.

8. Port Isaac, Cornwall

Port Isaac is a charming fishing village nestled on the rugged north coast of Cornwall. With its picture-perfect harbour, old fashioned whitewashed cottages and narrow streets, it’s the perfect setting for a relaxing stroll with your camera. 

The harbour is an excellent starting point for fishing and sightseeing trips, with views of the historic Tintagel Castle and exchanting seaside village of Boscastle. 

There’s also the possibility of doing some dolphin and seal spotting, as well as enjoying scenic coastal and inland walks.

9. Runswick Bay, North Yorkshire 

With its red-roofed seafront cottages, winding streets and sandy beaches, Runswick Bay in North Yorkshire is a must-see for photography lovers. 

If you enjoy hiking as well as photography, the Cleveland Way National Trail will take you from Runswick Bay all the way to Saltburn, with plenty of stunning scenery and wildlife to spot and photograph along the way. 

10. Hunstanton, Norfolk 

The tiny coastal village of Hunstanton in Norfolk is best known for its spectacular sunsets and sea views, making it the perfect spot to practice your golden hour photography skills. 

Wildlife photographers will be happy to know that Hunstanton has one of the UK’s largest colonies of common seals, with an estimated 3000 living along the shallow sandbanks. 

Other attractions include the ruins of St Edmund’s Chapel and Hunstanton Wolf Trail, as well as water sports like windsurfing and kitesurfing. 

Looking for more travel ideas? Check out these brilliant day trips or get inspired by some of these beautiful UK-based photography destinations. If you’d like to turn your travel photos into a beautiful coffee table photobook, these 10 tips for planning and designing a travel photo book will help you get started.