Eight of the best UK family beaches

Summer's here and the UK is bursting with some great beaches to enjoy the sunshine, here are eight of the best.

Ainsdale, Southport Ainsdale-beach-280

Clean swimming water, sand dunes that form part of a Local Nature Reserve, and family activities including donkeys, kitesurfing and parakarting – this beach is a family favourite for all ages.
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Three Shells, SouthendSouthend-280

This compact, clean and sandy beach is very popular with families. Situated at the bottom of Southend Pier, it has lots of play equipment for children of all ages. There's also an Adventure Island Theme Park nearby, so the kids will never get bored.
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New Quay, Wales New-Quay-280

An animal lover's delight – you're more likely to see dolphins in the wild from this beach than anywhere else in the UK. The Cardigan Bay Marine Wildlife Centre, based here, runs boat trips in the summer so you can see the seals, birds, dolphins and porpoises that visit this beautiful coastline up close.
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Filey, Yorkshire Yorkshire-280

This stunning, wide stretch of golden sand is backed by a promenade that's perfect for pushchairs. Donkey rides on the beach will make your child's day, while crazy golf and an arcade add to the traditional feel.
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Benllech, AngleseyBenllech-anglesey-280

Few beaches can compare with the award-winning Benllech Beach in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. There are watersports for active types, and rock pools for tots to explore. There are also shops, cafés and a picnic area, so you can really make a day of it.
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Bournemouth, DorsetBournemouth-beach-280

One of the biggest and best beaches in Britain (five beaches, four with Blue Flag awards), this 11km stretch of sand was the first to introduce the family-friendly Kidzone scheme, where children wear a wristband to help keep them within the coloured beach zones and make it easy to identify them.
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Studland, Dorset Dorset-beach-280

Have a fab day out on this golden, sandy National Trust-managed beach that stretches for four miles from South Haven Point to Old Harry Rocks, with shallow bathing water perfect for tots. If you get bored (unlikely!) there are trails through the dunes.
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Scarista, Isle of Harris

If you want the turquoise waters and immense stretches of white sand you find in the Caribbean, but hanker after splendid isolation (and carpets of wild flowers too), then head off to this glorious beach in the Outer Hebrides. We promise it's worth the journey.

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