When muggy summer weather descends, there's really only one place to be: the beach. Not to knock London's urban beaches – or refreshing outdoor lidos – but sometimes only an authentic sea breeze will do. And now that travel restrictions are being eased across the UK, we can finally head out on a day trip or an overnight stay in self-contained accommodation to get some salty lungfuls of sea air.
Everyone knows that Cornwall and Devon are home to some cracking beaches. But, when it comes to dodging the crowds, we're more interested in little hidden coves accessible only by foot, or secluded shingle shores untainted by tacky souvenir shops.
Here's our pick of the best beautiful and hidden beaches across the UK.
Please note: Facilities and businesses we mention may be closed at the moment. Government advice is to avoid public transport so don’t travel by train or bus. Please be mindful of the people who live locally. If you decide to travel, check whether car parks are open before you set off and adhere to social distancing guidelines on your visit.
RECOMMENDED: the 10 best beaches near London