Picture-postcard locations on the coast

Accommodation, Beaches, Coastal, Days out, Romantic breaks

Posted by Kate A on 19th February 2020

Romantic breaks on the UK coast

As the weather warms up and the days lengthen, the dream for many is to escape somewhere beautiful on the coast where a bedroom window can be flung wide to listen to the relaxing sound of the waves. The UK’s wild and sweeping coastline is peppered with picture-postcard locations, perfect for a memorable summer holiday with your beloved.

Quaint fishing villages with cobbled streets, pretty harbours and bobbing sailboats, and charming seaside towns boasting beautiful beaches of golden sand are all within your reach with a stay in one of our coastal cottages.

From the dramatic shores of Scotland to the palm-fringed bays of Cornwall, we have chosen some of the best spots to sink your feet into the sand, watch the sun melt into the sea and take a refreshing dip along the UK coastline.

Make memories this summer and escape to the coast for an idyllic break in a haven by the sea.

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☀️Polperro, Cornwall

☀️Salcombe, Devon

☀️Tenby, Pembrokeshire

☀️Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk

☀️Robin Hood's Bay, Yorkshire

☀️Crail, Scotland

Polperro, Cornwall

  • Plunge into the cooling waters of the tidal sea pool
  • Tuck into fresh crab sandwiches on the harbour
  • Stroll the coast path to reach the tranquil coves of Talland and Lantivet Bay

Polperro in Cornwall

The Cornish fishing village of Polperro is as quaint as they come, with an enchanting collection of whitewashed cottages clinging to steep, wooded hillsides that spill down to the harbour. At first glance, you might even think this pretty coastal village in the UK is situated on the Amalfi Coast! During summer, many of the iconic pearly cottages with their slate roofs are adorned in a profusion of flowers, and the streets are so narrow they are banned to cars which retains its peaceful, timeless charm.

Polperro in Cornwall

For the ultimate postcard scene, make your way through the village’s winding cobbled lanes to the unspoilt harbour where a horseshoe of cottages surrounds a bay of iridescent blue water. Colourful fishing boats gently sway in the breeze and mesmerising sea views draw you into the relaxed pace of life. On a warm summer’s day, nothing beats an invigorating swim in the tidal sea pool or a paddle on Polperro’s small sandy beach just outside the harbour walls. And the perfect way to end your visit? Hop aboard one of the horse-drawn carriages for the most relaxing way to get back to the car park.

Stay nearby at: Countryside View, 1 mile away

Countryside View in Cornwall

Enveloped by patchwork fields, this romantic hideaway is a peaceful escape for couples looking to get away from it all – with distant sea views to be enjoyed from the living room balcony.

Salcombe, Devon

  • Look out for dolphins in the sheltered bays
  • Hop on the South Sands Ferry to seek out soft-sand coves and beaches
  • Dine on the freshest seafood in waterside restaurants

Salcombe in Devon

Overlooking sparkling blue waters dotted with white yachts and fringed by swaying palms, the pretty cluster of pastel-coloured houses of Salcombe certainly belong on the front of a postcard. This genteel harbour town typifies the nautical beauty of South Devon and is a favourite with the sailing set. Situated in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty near the mouth of the Kingsbridge Estuary, Salcombe is a veritable paradise for anyone who enjoys coastal living. 

Salcombe in Devon

Summer activities here revolve around the wind and the waves; yachting, sailing and paddleboarding are available in abundance. Or for those who prefer dry land, there are a host of glorious beaches nearby where you can spend a memorable day on the sun-soaked sand, from North Sands with the ever-popular Winking Prawn café, to the secluded Sunny Cove which is accessible only by ferry. And a picturesque jumble of winding streets offers a variety of little shops, galleries, olde-worlde pubs and cosy cafes to peruse – be sure to sample some delicious Salcombe Dairy ice cream or the award-winning Salcombe Gin. What’s not to love about this sailor’s rest?

Stay nearby at: Bay Anchorage, 4.5 miles away

Bay Anchorage in Devon

Overlooking the National Trust beach of South Milton Sands, couples can soak up the blissful sea views from the balcony or the shared outdoor heated pool of this chic seaside apartment.

Tenby, Pembrokeshire

  • Take a boat trip to Caldey Island, owned by an order of Cistercian monks
  • Follow the scenic Pembrokeshire Coast Path to Saundersfoot
  • Discover a treasure trove of local history at the Tudor Merchant’s House

Tenby in Pembrokeshire

One of the prettiest towns in Wales, Tenby offers a maze of cobbled streets lined by brightly coloured fishermen’s cottages and elegant Georgian mansions, all encircled by medieval stone walls. Situated on the Pembrokeshire coastline on the western side of Carmarthen Bay, this charming seaside resort was once a favourite bathing spot of the Victorians. Nowadays, Tenby – or to give it its Welsh name, Dinbych-y-Pysgod, which means Little Fortress of the Fish – is a postcard makers dream.

Tenby in Pembrokeshire

The town is fringed by a ribbon of golden sand, offering three beautiful beaches to lounge on, North Beach, South Beach and Castle Beach. There’s also a fourth small beach at the harbour where you can admire fishing boats moored in neat rows in the shadow of the evocative St Catherine’s Fort. Be sure to explore Tenby’s narrow little lanes, home to traditional pubs, ice cream parlours and gift shops. In the summer, the streets are pedestrianised, allowing tables from the bars and restaurants to spill out into the sunshine and offer al fresco dining.

Stay nearby at: The Cwtch Saundersfoot, 3 miles away

The Cwtch Saundersfoot in Pembrokeshire

Just a few hundred metres from the sandy beach and harbour of Saundersfoot, this cosy cottage for two is a welcome retreat after salty sea walks along the coast path from Tenby.

Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk

  • Take your binoculars to spot the variety of wading birds on the foreshore
  • Visit in August to sample the delights of Wells Carnival Week
  • Admire the 18th-century Palladian architecture of Holkham Hall

Wells-next-the-Sea in Norfolk

One of the sweetest little seaside towns on the North Norfolk Coast, Wells-next-the-Sea enjoys a prime spot in a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Life here revolves around the charming harbour and the simple pastime of crabbing, or gillying as it’s known locally. Join the families lined on the quay and have a go at lowering your line into the water, or sit on the harbour wall with a paper-wrapped portion of fish and chips, watching the fishing boats drift in and out with their catch of the day.

Wells-next-the-Sea in Norfolk

A walk after lunch will take you a mile down to the sea or for those that would prefer a ride, there is a miniature narrow-gauge steam train which trundles down to the seafront. Here miles of soft, flaxen sand stretch into the distance, birds nest in the rolling dunes and seals bask in the sunshine at the water’s edge. Backed by fragrant pine woodland and a long line of pastel-painted beach huts on stilts, this picture-postcard beach is, without doubt, one of the prettiest in the country.

Stay nearby at: Flagstaff Garden House, 4.5 miles away 

Flagstaff Garden House in Norfolk

Situated within the grounds of the former home of Captain Woodget of the Cutty Sark, this characterful log cabin is only steps away from the attractive creek at Burnham Overy Staithe.

Robin Hood’s Bay, Yorkshire

  • When the tide is out, hunt for fossils along the shoreline
  • Enjoy a bracing stroll along the Cleveland Way National Trail
  • Visit the Old Coastguard Station to uncover the village’s seafaring past

Robin Hood's Bay in Yorkshire

This tiny fishing village nestled on the North Yorkshire coastline will have you swooning instantaneously. Robin Hood’s Bay is a classic collection of old higgledy-piggledy fishing cottages and twisting cobbled lanes, which tumble down towards a sandy shoreline. Historic wood-beamed pubs with roaring log fires are hidden throughout, and the whole place has a secret feel to it. You can easily imagine the sailors, fishermen, smugglers and swashbucklers that walked these atmospheric streets hundreds of years ago.

Robin Hood's Bay in Yorkshire

From the summit of the village, the views over the huddle of red-tiled rooftops and chimney pots, with a sweeping bay and soaring cliffs beyond, is simply breathtaking. Head down to the harbour to watch local fishermen bringing in their catch and savour fish 'n’ chips out of paper - regarded by many to be among Yorkshire’s best. And the star of this beautiful UK coastal location is the sandy bay below the cliffs, often named as one of the best beaches in the world. Whether fossil hunting, beachcombing, rock pooling or swimming, this dramatic coastline will leave you captivated.

Stay nearby at: Lenwood in Robin Hood’s Bay

Lenwood in Yorkshire

Tucked away in the heart of the village, this three-storey cottage offers a charming cobbled courtyard where you can soak up the last of the sun’s rays after adventures on the sand.

Crail, Scotland

  • Visit in June for the Crail Food Festival
  • Soak up mesmerising coastal scenery on the Fife Coastal Trail
  • Take a boat trip to see the puffins on the Isle of May

Crail in Scotland

Resembling the scene of an impressionist painting, Crail’s tiny colourful houses set against a backdrop of jaw-dropping cliffs and aquamarine water is sure to make your holiday snaps the envy of all. This breathtaking Scottish coastal village is pretty and peaceful, and is nestled within the East Neuk area of Fife. Timeless cobbled streets, known as ‘wynds’, snake their way down to the miniature 16th-century harbour, which is surrounded by historic fishing cottages with red-tiled roofs, painted in a palette of seaside shades. From here, the sweeping views across to the Isle of May are spectacular.

Crail in Scotland

Discover more about the village’s seafaring tradition in the Crail Museum and Heritage Centre, pick up some gorgeous souvenirs in one of the galleries and admire the beautiful buildings, including the Tolbooth which has an interesting tower topped with a smoked haddock-shaped weathervane! For lunch, we recommend the much-loved seafood shack, The Lobster Hut, which serves up mouth-watering crab rolls, langoustines and plates of fresh lobster.

Stay nearby at: East Neuk By The Sea, 5 miles away

East Neuk By The Sea in Scotland

The Fife Coastal Path leading to Crail is right on the doorstep of this sea-view cottage – when you return, slide open the bi-fold doors and let the salty sea breeze float through the elegant interiors.


Have any of these beautiful coastal locations in the UK caught your eye? If so, click the button below to browse our full collection of cottages by the coast and make special memories this summer with the one you love.

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.