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Which? reveals best beaches in UK

A Northumberland village has topped a ranking of UK seaside destinations for a third consecutive year.

Bamburgh, a village home to less than 400 people, came first out of 118 locations in research conducted by consumer group Which?. It asked more than 3,000 people to rate their experiences of visiting seaside towns in the last year on factors such as beaches, food, drink and accommodation options, scenery and value for money.

Bamburgh received the maximum of five stars for its beaches, seafront, accommodation, peace and quiet, scenery and value for money – with an overall score of 88 per cent.

Bamburgh is known for its impressive sandy shoreline backed by the imposing ruins of an ancient castle.

Devon’s Dartmouth was runner-up with a score of 85 per cent, climbing up from its position in fourth last year, while in third place was Portstewart in County Derry, Northern Ireland with 84 per cent.

The best seaside destination in Wales was Portmeirion, in Gwynedd, and Scotland’s highest ranking location was St Andrews in Fife.

Clacton-on-Sea in Essex and Skegness in Lincolnshire were tied for last place (both 48 per cent), closely followed by Burnham-on-Sea in Somerset and Bangor in County Down, Northern Ireland (both 49 per cent).

Despite their lowly rankings, some visitors found things to praise about these destinations.

Multiple respondents enjoyed Clacton’s “lovely” seafront gardens and its “fantastic” annual air show, while Skegness drew plaudits for its “old-fashioned charm”.

Rory Boland, editor of magazine Which? Travel, said: “Few countries can be home to such a diversity of brilliant seaside breaks.

“Whether you want world-class beaches and utter wilderness, or the bright lights and bucket and spade atmosphere of a resort, the UK has a seaside break made for you. What our survey shows is that it’s rarely the most famous destinations that visitors enjoy most.

“Try somewhere new this year and our survey shows you should find fewer crowds and better value.”

  1. Bamburgh, Northumberland
  2. Dartmouth, Devon
  3. Portstewart, Co. Londonderry/Derry
  4. Portmeirion, Gwynedd
  5. St Andrews, Fife
  6. Tynemouth, Tyne and Wear
  7. Southwold, Suffolk
  8. Aldeburgh, Suffolk
  9. St Davids, Pembrokeshire
  10. Tobermory, Isle of Mull

Read more on the best UK seaside towns to visit

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