Yes, Bideford Bay is home to several beaches, including Westward Ho!, Saunton Sands, Croyde Bay, and Woolacombe, all of which are located within a 35-minute drive from Bideford.
Westward Ho! is the closest beach to Bideford and is known for its long, sandy beach and excellent surfing conditions.
But that’s not all!
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Bideford Bay or Barnstable Bay?
While you would have thought with Barnstable being a bigger city, the bay that feeds it, it would be called “Barnstable Bay”, however, this is incorrect. To the West of Bideford, it is indeed known as “Bideford Bay”
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Bideford Bay & Beaches
Bideford Bay, also sometimes known as Barnstaple Bay, is a large area of water located on the northwest coast of Devon in South West England.
The bay extends from Hartland Point in the southwest to Baggy Point in the northeast and is partly sheltered by the island of Lundy.
This beautiful bay is home to several beaches, each with its unique features and amenities. The beaches and nearby towns make it such a popular tourist destination.
Did you know that Lundy Island used to be used by Pirates?! Learn more about Lundy Island Pirates here.
And now for those beaches in Bideford bay. They’re all amazing (and yes we’re biased, but they are!).
Clovelly is a small, former fishing village that has become a popular tourist destination due to its unique history and natural beauty.
The village is located on the north-facing coastline of Bideford Bay and is backed by steep, wooded or rocky cliffs.
Clovelly Beach is a man-made harbor that is perfect for swimming, boating, and other water activities. The beach also offers stunning views of the bay and the surrounding countryside.
Westward Ho! Beach
Westward Ho! is a small village located on the north-facing coastline of Bideford Bay.
The village is known for its clearly defined raised beach platform, which is cut well above the level of the present beach by wave action at times of high sea levels.
The beach is a long, wide, sandy beach that is perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and surfing. Westward Ho! is also a popular destination for kite surfing and windsurfing.
Saunton Sands is a long, wide, sandy beach located on the northern section of the bay’s coast.
The beach is backed by the Braunton Burrows, one of the largest sand dune systems in Britain. The dunes are of international importance for their wildlife, including a number of rarities, and form the core of a Biosphere Reserve.
Saunton Sands is perfect for swimming, surfing, and sunbathing. The beach is also dog-friendly, making it a popular destination for families with pets (that’s a huge win for our family!)
Croyde Bay is a popular surfing and tourist venue located on the northern section of the bay’s coast.
The beach is set between the steeply sloping headlands of Saunton Down, Baggy Point, and Morte Point. The beach is perfect for surfing and offers views of the bay and the surrounding countryside.
Croyde Bay is also home to several amenities, including cafes, restaurants, and shops.
Woolacombe is a small village located on the northern section of the bay’s coast. The village is known for its stunning beaches, which are perfect for swimming, surfing, and sunbathing.
Woolacombe Beach is a wide, sandy beach that is perfect for families with children. The beach is also home to several amenities, including cafes, restaurants, and shops. Again, Woolacombe is a dog-friendly beach (see local signs).
And yes, we know Woolacombe is technically part of Morte Bay, but they are all so close, we have been known to visit them all in one day!
So, Does Bideford Bay have a Beach?
Yes. Bideford Bay is a destination that offers visitors not just one beach, but many. Clovelly, Westward Ho!, Saunton Sands, Croyde Bay and Woolacombe. Each beach in the bay has its own unique features and amenities.
Whether you’re interested in surfing, sunbathing, paddling, building sand castles or exploring the surrounding countryside, Bideford Bay has something to offer everyone, even the dog (and we love dogs!)
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About the Author
Welcome to Bideford.com! I’m Matt, a seasoned explorer and avid fan of Bideford and the broader North Devon area. With over a decade of consistent family visits, virtually every weekend, I’ve immersed myself in the rich history and vibrant culture Bideford & North Devon.
On this site, you’ll find a wealth of knowledge amassed from my adventures here. From in-depth local guides to engaging blog posts about Bideford. Whether you’re looking for recommendations on things to do or guidance on where to stay we have you covered. Join me as we delve into the heart of Bideford, North Devon – a town that’s more than just a destination, but an experience waiting to be discovered.
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