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Gorleston Beach

Traditional British Seaside

Gorleston beach, on the east coast of Norfolk, stretches for three wonderful sandy miles.  Just down the coast from the much livelier and busier Great Yarmouth beach lies this quieter, sandier, Victorian seaside town and beach.

From a positive angle, this beach tends to get ignored by those visiting Great Yarmouth, who seem to prefer the much busier Pleasure Beach and Pier's a few miles up the road.  This is good news if you're looking for a beach which will be a little bit more restful and a bit quieter.

Gorleston Beach

And if you really want to explore Norfolk UK, then this beach is a definite must for a visit.  Move away from the hustle and bustle to the more serene and beautiful sandy, child friendly and dog friendly beach, but where you can still enjoy the seaside, and also have a bit more space.

Map of the Norfolk Beaches

View Norfolk UK Beaches in a larger map

Gorleston Beach

The great thing about this particular east coast beach is that the car parking is free, which is most unusual.  You can park at one end, near the Gorleston Pavilion Theatre and Gorleston Pier (a harbour wall), or at the middle of the beach, near the start of the cliffs.  Either car park brings you pretty much straight onto the beach.  And there’s so much space, you’re spoilt for choice as to where to plonk yourself!

Gorleston Beach south

Patrolled by lifeguards in the summer months, this is a fantastic beach for bucket and spading and very child friendly.  Lots of space for building those treasured sand castles!  

Norfolk has so many beaches (about 50), and Gorleston beach is one of the little gems for those wanting the slightly quieter surrounds of a typical UK beach. Some of the others being Holkham, Old Hunstanton, or Wells-next-the-Sea.

Sand texture on Gorleston beach

At low tide you'll be welcomed with a vast expanse of hard sand, but when the tide is in, the sand does have a smattering of pebbles as per the photo.  I wouldn’t describe it as pure sand, but on the other hand, I definitely wouldn’t say it was a pebbly beach.  No need for shoes here.

  • The litter bins are emptied every day, so Gorleston-on-Sea is a very clean beach, no worries if you’re bringing children. 
  • There is also a delightful little paddling pool and boating pond at the top of the beach, which harks back to the Victorian era.
  • If you fancy an ice cream, or good old British fish and chips, then head to the  beach café on the promenade, or the little shops by the car park.
  • Or why not just relax on one of the tiers of the 3 tier promenade, sitting on the many benches available, looking down onto the sea, watching the waves gently beating on the golden sand.
Gorleston beach paddling pool
Beach cafe
Gorleston Beach shops
Gorleston-on-Sea promenade

Dog friendly Gorleston Beach

If you’re thinking about your beloved pet, then yes, this is a very dog friendly beach, either exercising your dogs on the sand, or taking a gentle stroll along the promenade.  

However there are restrictions in the summer.  But if you walk further towards the south end of the beach, you have the more rural open feel  as this part is backed onto by cliffs, as well as the groynes acting as sea defences.

Dog friendly beach Gorleston-on-Sea

This lovely beach is a delight for all the family.  It’s a very traditional beach, but if you’re wanting more attractions, then make your way up the coast to the next resort and visit Great Yarmouth beach.