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Basic beaches: five urban beaches open in London this week

Kate Lloyd

Only a couple of weeks ago, if you wanted to hit the beach you either had to take a train to the coast and freeze your bits off, or hop on a plane and get your booty down to Marbs. But this week, London is becoming home to a slew of urban beaches, as a hole load open up at once. Thought you had to go all the way to Acapulco to play beach volleyball? Wrong. Hawaii for a mai tai? Nuh uh! It’s all right here, in bleedin’ London!

1. Beach, I'm Madonna

Brand new Beach East in the Olympic Park opens on July 11. The 2200 sq metres of sand features a gigantic paddling pool, funfair rides and two bars – Pub Tropicana and Coconut Joe's. 

2. Beach Better Have My Money

The Urban Beach at the Royal Docks sets sail on July 14. Deckchairs are available for those who would prefer to keep sand contact to a minimum, and free family-friendly activities should allow parents a little time out to breath. No swimming though.  

3. It's Britney, Beach

Head to Camden Beach at the Roundhouse from July 17 for deck chairs, beach huts, ping pong and, as if you need telling, a fully stocked bar. Plus, two pop-up restaurants: Fishy Business, serving mussels and fish and chips, and Pork, which serves – unsurprisingly – sausages. 

4. 99 Problems But A Beach Ain't One

The Beach at Brent Cross has 100 palm trees, Punch and Judy, carousels, teacup rides and a 60ft roller coaster. Plus, fish and chips and Pimm's. Open now, £3 entry.

5. I'm A Beach, I'm A Lover, I'm A Child, I'm A Mother 

The Beach at JW3 will feature all the best bits of summer – deckchairs, paddling pools, mojitos, barbecued food and plenty of sand to play in. Open now.

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