Play Hard

10 of our favourite North East beaches

Get those vacay vibes right on your doorstep...

Written by High Life North
Published 07.08.2021

It seems like most of us have accepted that we sadly won’t be jetting off to an exotic beach this Summer – but it could be worse.

We can still get those vacay vibes and feel the sand between our toes right here in the North East. So get out those buckets and spades!

We’re so lucky to have the most beautiful coastlines in the country. Whether you’re wanting a refreshing walk breathing in the fresh sea air or fancy having a picnic in the sun, you’re guaranteed to have a backdrop of stunning scenery and outstanding views.

From sand stretching for miles, historical castles, and cliff formations that’ll take your breath away, we’re so spoilt for choice for our beaches. To save you the job, here’s our pick of ten beaches for you to visit giving you those high tides and good vibes that our region has to offer.

North Tyneside

Tynemouth Longsands

The name says it all.  With sands stretching for a mile in this stunning location, it’s said to be one of the most painted and photographed beaches in the country.

Besides great views, its waters are renowned as a surf destination. Why not learn to surf at Tynemouth Surf Co – Surf School or if relaxing is more of your beach vibe visit Crusoe’s for a cheeky cocktail or chilled beer and just sit back watching the world go by.

Head down to Riley’s Fish Shack for great seasonal food cooked fresh on the beach. They have a covered area and also plenty of deckchairs on the sand. When the darkness starts to fall, you can get cosy around the fire pit. Holiday vibes.

Whitley Bay

After an impressive £36m Seafront makeover, the town has been brought back to life with its landmark Spanish City recently restored to its full glory – Trenchers is the perfect spot for award-winning fish and chips!

Its beach, a stone’s throw from traditional seaside attractions (we’re suckers for the 2p machines), and the gorgeous walk to St Mary’s Lighthouse is one of our favourites. You might even be lucky enough to see the seals often seen basking on the rocks.



One of the jewels in the crown of north beaches, this spectacular stretch of coast is a favourite movie location with the latest Transformers: The Last Knight being filmed at Bamburgh Castle.

Walk in the footsteps of Mark Wahlberg along the beach, with the dramatic Bamburgh Castle as a backdrop, and take in views to Lindisfarne and the Farne Islands where heroine Grace Darling bravely carried out her rescue mission. And it’s the perfect setting for a cute Instagram selfie.


Wanting to stretch your legs and blow those cobwebs away? We know just the place.

Start at the pretty fishing village of Craster that’s famous for its kippers, you can often smell them smoking in the air, pass the ruins of Dunstanburgh Castle before feeling the sand between your toes along Embleton sands before reaching Newton-by-the-Sea. A gorgeous walk filled with breathtaking views.


If a fun active day at the beach is more on your level, horseshoe-shaped Beadnell Bay is the spot for you. Whether you’re up for a game of rounders, kite flying, or hitting the waves in a kayak, we can guarantee your day will be spent making happy memories.

And did you know that the latest Lloyd’s bank TV advert was filmed here last summer? With its magnificent black horse galloping majestically across the sand.


Just under a mile away from the beautiful historic town of Warkworth and its castle, this hidden gem can be easily missed, but its vast expanse of sand is the perfect sunbathing spot to escape our busy working lives.

With crystal clear waters quality and a local surf school that runs regular lessons, enjoy that vacay feel right here in Northumberland.

Seaton Sluice

If you’re wanting to escape a crowded beach on a sunny day this Northumberland village beach, not far from Whitley Bay, is a quiet little gem to have a peaceful day.

The recently refurbished Delaval Arms has a great outdoor terrace to while away a couple of hours, before taking the seafront walk along to Collywell Bay and the Harbour. Don’t worry, for a small village, there are plenty of other pubs to stop at if you need a pit stop.

Looking for a culture fix? Visit the Tower House Gallery. An eclectic mix of art housed in an 18th Century original Tower House building.

Don’t forget to try the famous fish and chip shop Harbour View. There will almost definitely be a queue but trust us, they’re worth waiting for.

South Tyneside

Marsden Bay

South Shields’ famous Marsden Rock is formed from a 250-million-year-old cliff top and is home to a range of seabirds – kittiwakes, fulmars, gulls, and cormorants.

If you don’t want to work up a sweat, you can take a ride in the iconic lift shaft down to The Grotto. A historic and renowned hotel, pub, and restaurant with a very interesting past!

Or if you fancy exploring above the bay, visit The Leas, a two-mile stretch of grassy land which is ideal for walking, cycling, and flying kites.

Roker and Seaburn

These twin beaches in Sunderland have perfect picnic spots along their length.

Home to a promenade and landscaped seafront to stroll along, create a gorgeous setting to capture pictures of your day out for the ‘gram.

And good news, Roker Pier has been resorted meaning that its tunnel and lighthouse are now open to the public for the first time. Oh, and not forgetting Roker Park which is just a short walk along the coast.


What better way to enjoy a Summer’s day than on the golden sand, of this multi-award-winning South Shields beach.

Let loose on the rides at Ocean Beach Pleasure Park or have a boat or miniature train ride or refuel yourself with a cuppa at South Marine Park.

And we can go one – or several times – better as we in the North East know that there are many other top stretches of beach on our doorstep just waiting to be explored.

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