Britain's best family-friendly beaches

We've already enjoyed some much-needed sunshine in Britain this year, and with hopes high that the good weather will continue, Brits across the UK are heading to the beach for some good old-fashioned family fun.

Family beaches Britain

Pic: Getty

If it's sandcastles, ice creams and donkey rides you're after, take a look at these excellent examples of the best of British.

Ramsgate, Kent
A traditional promenade gives way to a bustling sandy beach at this Blue Flag seaside town, and since it's right in the town, there is no shortage of things to do, places to eat, and plenty to keep the kids entertained. Cafe's alongside the beach have outdoor tables, and the beach is equipped with lifeguards and a bay inspector to help keep the kids safe. Don't expect to bring Fido along though - the beach operates a ban on dogs during the summer months.

West Beach, Clacton-on-Sea, Essex
Another traditional sandy beach, complete with pier, Pavilion Fun Park, and a wide range of bars and restaurants, West Beach has something for kids and adults alike. The beach itself is great for kids as it slopes gently into the water, and there's a child-safety wristband scheme to ensure any lost little ones are found safe and sound.

Blackpool Sands, Devon
This sheltered bay with its clear, calm waters boasts a beautiful stretch of golden sand and plenty to appeal to families. Sandpits and a bathing raft are perfect for little ones, while more adventurous older children can try kayaking, boogie boarding and snorkelling.

Woolacombe, Devon
A three-mile stretch of golden sands famed for cleanliness, water quality and facilities, it's little wonder Woolacombe won Best British Beach in the Coast Awards 2012. It also holds the Visit England Awards For Excellence gold award for best family resort. The village nearby offers a wealth of eateries, as well as the Golden Coast Holiday Village, which offers plenty of outdoor fun for families. Kayaking, surf schools and beach horse riding are also available in the area should the kids tire of the beautiful sand and sea.

Tenby, Pembrokeshire
The quaint town of Tenby boasts not one but four nearby beaches, but the huge expanse of North Beach is a great place for active kids to just let off steam. Awarded a Blue Flag in 2012, this dog-free beach has a lifeguard service during the summer, along with a shop, cafe, toilets and hire facilities just above the beach itself. And if the kids get tired of sandcastles, there are rock pools to explore.

Southwold, Suffolk
Pretty, colourful beach huts, a pier, lighthouse, and gorgeous golden sands make Southwold an ideal spot for an old-fashioned family day out. This charming seaside resort also offers a model boating pond, as well as alternative slot machines should the weather turn.

Mablethorpe, Lincolnshire
A long and flat sandy beach with reinvented beach huts and a Sand Train from which to admire the seafront, Mablethorpe is another family fun day at the seaside. There's a funfair, paddleboating, crazy golf, and donkey rides to keep the kids happy.

South Bay, Scarborough
Soft sand, calm waters, sheltered from the north winds, Scarborough's South Bay beach is a sun trap for sun-worshipping adults, and the nearby town centre offers restaurants, bars, and amusement arcades should the heat get too much.

Burntisland, Fife
A beautiful Blue Flag beach overlooking the First of Forth, Burntisland is not only perfect for creating the perfect sandcastle, there are plenty of rockpools where kids can get up close and personal with Britain's native marine life. The nearby Seaside Park, with crazy golf, bouncy castle and summertime fairground is an added bonus in the unlikely event that you tire of this glorious stretch of sand.

Which beach would you recommend for a fun family day out? Leave your comments below...