Beaches in Swanage

The golden sandy beach at Swanage has been drawing visitors to this delightful coastal town for generations. 

The wide, sandy beach is backed by a promenade and it has all the facilities you would expect for a traditional seaside resort – cafes and refreshment kiosks, toilets, showers, free drinking water refill points and of course, colourful beach huts. 

Baby changing facilities are available at all public toilets managed by Swanage Town Council apart from Battlegate, Mermond Place and Peveril Point. 

Swanage Central Beach is award-winning and has been granted both Blue Flag and Seaside Awards for over 20 consecutive years for its water quality, beach cleanliness and access facilities.  

If you are arriving by bus, there are bus stops right next to the beach or it is a short walk from Swanage Railway Station. There are two large, long-stay car parks located near the beach, one of which has Electric Vehicle chargepoints. 

Family friendly 

Swanage beach is fantastic for all ages. Children can make sandcastles and paddle in the shallow waters while adults sit back in a deckchair and watch the boats come and go in the Bay. It’s what memories are made of! 

It wouldn’t be a trip to the beach without seeing a traditional Punch and Judy show and Swanage beach has 3 shows daily (weather permitting) from mid July to early September. 

Hiring a beach hut during your visit? The road between the beach huts and central beach at Shore Road is closed to traffic all year which makes it super safe for children to go back and forth to the beach, toilets or ice-cream kiosks. 

If you’re planning on swimming or spending time in the water, lookout for the red and yellow lifeguard flags. From end of May to early September there is a RNLI lifeguard patrol on the central beach from 10am until 6pm. There is also a designated swimming area from May to September. 

Beach hut, deckchair, parasol and sun lounger hire 

There are 2 areas close to Swanage Beach where you can hire beach huts throughout the year for the day, week or longer. 

Hiring a beach hut for the duration of your holiday means its hassle free to visit the beach. Each beach hut comes with seating and electricity supply and of course is a great place to store your beach towels, swimwear and children’s toys for the day.  

If you’d like to hire a deckchair for the day, it costs £3.50 or £2.50* after 3:15pm. 

Sun loungers and windbreaks are available to hire for the day from the beach attendant for £10 and £5 respectively*. Sun umbrellas can also be hired for the day. 

*Prices stated are for 2024. 

Pedalos and boat hire 

If you’d like to explore more of Swanage Bay and see the beach from a different angle, you can hire a pedalo or self-drive motor boat. 

Pedalos, paddleboards and kayaks can be hired straight off the beach. To hire a pedalo or paddleboard is £15, with double kayaks costing £12.50 and single kayaks £10*. Prices are for 30 minutes hire and include life jackets. *Prices stated are for 2024. 

It’s just a short 5 minute walk from the end of the beach along the seafront to the Swanage Boat Hire kiosk. Each self-drive motor boat can carry up to 6 passengers and is hired for a minimum of 30 minutes. They are available from Easter to October (weather permitting). 

Beach accessibility 

The beach is backed by a promenade which is a flat, easy walk for all abilities and also suitable for pushchairs, wheelchairs and mobility scooters.  

For access down onto the beach, there are gentle slopes onto the sand next to the Banjo Pier and Clocktower and also steps with handrails at various locations along the seafront. 

If you or someone you are visiting with is in a wheelchair or finds it difficult to walk on the soft sand, there is beach matting on the beach during the summer months. 

Wheelchair accessible toilets are located at Shore Road (adjacent to the beach) and there is a Changing Places toilet at North Beach car park. You’ll need a RADAR key to access both of them which you can purchase from Swanage Information Centre.  

There is accessible parking at all 5 of the town centre car parks with the nearest long stay parking at Main Beach car park

Dog friendly 

Bringing your faithful friend for a day at the beach? 

Monkey Beach which is located between the Stone Quay and Swanage Pier is a small pebble beach which welcomes dogs all year round.  

On the Central Beach, dogs are allowed from 1 October to 30 April only. 

There are various drinking water refill points along the seafront where you can get free water for your dog and many of the cafes and kiosks will also have water bowls too. You’ll even find a number of kiosks and shops in the town centre also sell doggie ice-cream! 

More to see and do...

On The Water

Explore Swanage Bay by boat, jet ski, pedalo, paddleboard or kayak.

Accessible Swanage

There are many attractions and places to visit in Swanage which are accessible to all.