Shore Footed Beach Walks
At Salt-Water HQ we’re yearning for sand, sea and big skies. Not just for the expansive view of the horizon, the sound of the waves and the fresh, salty air, but for all the other benefits that walking on a beach has to offer. Reconnecting with the beauty of nature helps to reduce stress and lend perspective. Walking along the shore requires greater effort than walking on a hard surface so you burn more energy, plus the sand acts as a natural cushion preventing damage to your muscles. Also, most of us are short of vitamin D and walking along the water’s edge is a great way to boost supplies!
This Bucket List is focussed on wide, sweeping beaches for maximum sea-gazing gorgeousness. In Salt-Water Sandals you have the perfect companion for a beach stroll - 100% waterproof it doesn’t matter if you get your feet wet. With every step you take they mold to the unique shape of your foot, creating the perfect fit. If we could take our Salt-Waters anywhere in Europe this weekend these are the shore footed beach walks we’d like to do.
Buckle up your Salties, stretch your legs and soak up the sunshine….
Holkham Beach, Norfolk
The North Norfolk coast is rich in wildlife, a haven for birds and home to one of the largest seal colonies in Britain at Blakeney Point. In fact, so beautiful is this particular stretch it was used as a setting in the film Shakespeare in Love. This shoreline is part of Holkham National Nature Reserve where shady pine woods and salt marshes sit alongside miles of beach – giving you the opportunity to wonder at the harmony of it all and walk for as long as you choose.
Rhossili Beach, Gower
Quieter than Cornwall and less crowded than Devon, Welsh beaches are tranquil and breathtakingly beautiful. Rhossili is the westernmost beach on the Gower Peninsula. Best accessed down a path from the village of Rhossili, it is one of the most recognisable beaches in Wales yet manages to retain a Robinson Crusoe atmosphere. This 5km long stretch of sand is bookended by the famous promontory Worm’s Head at one end and Llangennith at the other. Backed by steep green hills, the powerful Atlantic swells here mean the water is popular with surfers. A fabulous spot for a wild and windy beach stroll.
Luskentyre Sands, Isle of Harris
When we think of Scotland, white sand beaches are not what first spring to mind but, as well as the stunning craggy mountains and sweeping forests that it’s famous for, Scotland also boasts some incredible beaches. Located on the west coast of South Harris in the Outer Hebrides, Seilibost Beach (pronounced Shell-a-bost) is one of the most spectacular in Scotland. The Eastern end of the beach gives way to grassy dunes and makes a suitable starting point for long walks. Pure, white sands with rocky patches slope gently into the pristine, aquamarine waters of the sea and the view out over Luskentyre Bay to the mountains beyond make this a perfect get away from it all destination.
White Rocks, Portrush, Co Antrim
Whiterocks is well known by locals but less so by tourists and the walk to and from Portrush along this blue flag beach is stunning. Fringed with limestone cliffs, bizarre sea-sculpted rock formations pile up at the Eastern end of the bay. There are also magnificent sea caves to explore and a path up to the ruins of Dunluce Castle.
Texel Beach, Wadden Islands
Texel beach is on the island of Texel just a short ferry ride over from the mainland on the North coast of Holland. A paradise for beach walkers with its 30km of long sandy beach, the island’s northern coastline is an utterly unique dune landscape and also a protected nature reserve. The landmark red lighthouse is 150 years old and offers spectacular vistas from its viewing platform.
Plage des Prises, Ile de Ré
Lying just off the west coast of France, the Ile de Ré is a UNESCO world heritage site of sand dunes, salt flats and pine forests. It gets more hours of sunlight here than anywhere else on the west coast and boasts 100km of diverse coastline. There are lots of beaches to walk on but those on the west of the island are quieter. We like La Plage des Prises, just South of Couarde. A 5km stretch of fine sand over which a coastal board walk has been laid. Enjoy the scent of pine and tamarind trees drifting over as you stroll. At just 9km drive from La Rochelle it makes a great day trip from the mainland.
Playa de Bolonia, Tarifa
Located on the Costa de la Luz 20km north of Tarifa, La Playa de Bolonia lies within El Estrecho Natural Park. The winds of Poniente and Levante have created a huge dune of fine white sand that towers over the western end of the beach. Backed by a forest of umbrella pines and lapped by the turquoise clear waters of the Atlantic, the dune is considered to be so beautiful it was declared a Natural Monument in 2001. And as if the striking beauty of this beach is not enough, it also features the most complete Roman ruins yet to be discovered in Spain. Because of its proximity to Africa the ancient town of Baelo Claudia was an important centre for commerce and the distribution of goods across the Empire.
In light of current circumstances, please check government advice and be sure it's safe to travel before visiting any of these destinations. For now, this list is for future reference and current daydreaming only.
And when it is safe to go, make sure you also check the tide times carefully – many beaches are at their best at low tide but can disappear altogether as the tide comes in. Don’t forget to pack plenty of water, provisions and, of course, your Salties!