LOOKING for a stunning beach that doesn’t come with a sky-high price tag to enjoy the golden sands? Then go WEST!
Not to the West Country – currently besieged by staycationers – but West Wittering in leafy Sussex.
The village is nestled on a peninsula just below Chichester and, along with neighbouring East Wittering, offers coastal living at its best.
And unlike other popular resorts, the place has not sold itself out to developers so you won’t see a raft of big hotels or bog-standard retail estates.
With the beach the star of the show, going back to basics with a campsite stay is no hardship.
Arguably one of the best, just a five-minute walk from the village itself and close to the sand dunes, is Scott’s Farm.
We reckon the best option is to roll up with a tent, with standard pitch prices ranging from £22 a night in low season to £29 a night in the school holidays.
Even electric hook-ups are only £2 to £3 a day on top if you have got the gear.
That works out at around £210 for seven nights in the peak of summer – great value if you are a family or travelling with a group of pals.
And don’t worry – it’s not all too basic, as there are three well-maintained and frequently cleaned shower blocks across the huge site, split across three large fields – so no matter when you want to visit there should be space.
A large children’s play area means the kids can nip off to have some fun while still on site, allowing the grown-ups to relax with a drink while enjoying a barbecue.
West Wittering beach is ten minutes away. The huge Blue Flag sands are backed by rolling dunes, and when the tide is out you’ll get wide open spaces to dig, play games, kite-surf or paddle.
With lifeguards on duty throughout the summer months it’s also safe, and there’s a large car park right behind so you can take all your belongings.
At high season, it costs £8-9 to park for a day which is good value compared to some parking charges by other popular resort beaches.
But do book in advance at justpark.com – with reduced capacity due to Covid19 it can get full pretty quickly.
There’s room for everyone to enjoy the waves, as kite surfers and windsurfers bounce off the break while little ones paddle safely in the glassy lagoons left at low tide.
The beach cafe sells coffee, ice cream and takeaway food or you can enjoy your own picnic on the area of grass.
Nature lovers can explore the East Head of the Witterings, where seals, birds and fauna can be enjoyed on the National Trust site, which takes in the shifting sand dunes, salt marsh and tides.
Cafe culture is available in both East and West Wittering, villages separated by a five to ten-minute coastal walk, plus there are pubs serving excellent food.
But nothing beats an ice-cream as you sit and watch the sailing boats and ships pass by heading out to sea.
Surf shops cater for water sports lovers, while there are several outlets which stock everything you need for a beach or camping holiday, and what’s more they boast bargain prices to help ensure the budget is not blown.
With a couple of brand-chain local stores also available, you can stock up on everything you want at a reasonable cost including the all-important barbie supplies.
And with the bustling city and nightlife of Portsmouth 20 minutes away to the west, and historic Arundel Castle a similar distance to the east, it is also perfectly situated as a base to explore what the south coast has to offer.
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