Often described as “Cornwall without the Crowds”, you will find miles of stunning coastline and many beaches worth visiting nearby.
Whether you prefer to walk and come across some hidden coves or if you would rather pack up a picnic, the children, and the dogs and make a day of it, you will find somewhere to suit.
Listed below are some suggestions:
Rhins of Galloway
On the sheltered Luce Bay side of the Rhins of Galloway is one of our largest beaches with miles of sand. Apart from bathing, this level beach with its firm sands is popular for walking and, more recently, Blokarting! The village of Sandhead has a cafe and a hotel and there are car parks adjacent to the beach.
On the West coast of the Rhins is Larbrax beach. More often than not deserted. It’s a perfect destination for children and dogs with lots of rock pools for entertainment. Plenty of parking.
Killantringan Beach near Portpatrick
Killlantringan, with its magnificent lighthouse can be reached by walking along the Southern Upland Way from Portpatrick, as well as by road. This is another long, level beach with firm sands and magnificent rocky pools and rock outcrops to explore. Care advised if swimming here due to currents.
A pretty walk along the cliff tops at Portpatrick brings you to Sandeel Bay – a stunning spot, with caves and a waterfall – an ideal place for a picnic.
Has a small sandy beach in the harbour area and the surrounding rocks and raised promenade keep it fairly sheltered. The sand is only exposed when the tide is part way out. There is a good choice of cafes and pubs close to hand for refreshments.
Lady Bay – North Rhins
Situated near the top of the Rhins Peninsula. near where Loch Ryan enters the Irish Sea, Lady Bay is a hidden gem. A small sandy beach down a narrow ,unsealed road the journey there is a bit of an adventure in itself. The views from the bay and the approach to the bay are excellent as the loch is fairly narrow at this point and you can see beyond Loch Ryan to the Mull of Kintyre.
Although the village of Ardwell is on the Luce Bay side of the South Rhins, just a few miles south of Sandhead, Ardwell Bay is on the other side of the south Rhins – on the Irish Sea coast. The beach is at the end of a narrow road with uneven surfaces but there are good parking facilities at the end of the road and the sandy beach is another one made for exploring. To the south of the carpark a path leads over rocks to the ruins of an Iron Age Broch – Doon Castle!
Towards the south of the peninsula – just before the Mull of Galloway is another village with miles of sandy beach stretching from the picturesque harbour, popular with small boat owners and with its iconic light-tower designed by Thomas Telford to the Logan Fish Pond. Logan Fish Pond is open to the public and well worth a visit. Logan Botanic Gardens are also nearby.
Machars of Galloway
Probably one of the best and most popular beaches on the Machars, Monreith has plentiful sand and, being in Luce Bay, it tends to be fairly sheltered. Parking is available adjacent to the golf course. Look out for the otter statue – a memorial to Gavin Maxwell, author of A Ring of Bright Water. While visiting Monreith Beach. check out Kirkmaiden Church with its unusual gravestones set behind the beach up a narrow path just west of the road from the Golf Course.