‘I visited one of the UK’s most underrated seaside resorts’

The UK is home to so many pretty seaside towns, but some of the most popular spots can feel overcrowded in peak season. Bournemouth Beach is regularly named one of the UK’s best in Tripadvisor rankings, but it’s very popular in summer.

St Ives, one of Cornwall’s most popular seaside towns, is even considering introducing a tourist tax to combat overtourism. Luckily, there are a few British seaside spots that aren’t quite as crowded.

I recently visited Southsea, a small seaside resort just outside of Portsmouth city centre. The pebbly beach has plenty of quieter areas even in the peak of summer.

Dogs are allowed on some areas of the beach so it’s also a great place to take them for a winter walk.

Southsea might not be quite as cute as St Ives but with incredible views of the Solent, it’s definitely a beach destination that deserves more attention.

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The horizon is broken by sea forts, which were originally built to protect maritime access to Portsmouth Harbour when the UK felt under threat from Napoleon. They make for an atmospheric view, whatever the season.

Southsea’s promenade is the ideal place to ride a bike, go for a beach walk or relax on a bench and watch the view.

Just a few steps back from the promenade, tourists will find the pretty Southsea Rose Gardens, which has blooms of every colour and hue.

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Another short walk from the seafront, tourists will find Canoe Lake, a manmade lake which has pedalos for hire. There’s also a mini-golf course.

When it comes to eating, my favourite restaurant is Southsea Beach Cafe. Located right on the seafront, the restaurant serves locally sourced seasonal dishes. In the summer season, look out for the seafood BBQ.

The cafe also serves a fantastic breakfast but it’s often busy at the weekends so plan ahead to secure a table.

Just a short distance from the seafront, The Tenth Hole tea room does a great high tea and a simple lunch menu with plenty of family friendly dishes.

If you want to extend your trip to Southsea, it’s just a short drive or bus to Gunwharf Quays, one of the UK’s best outlet shopping areas.

Looking to travel abroad? Check out Lonely Planet’s prestigious ranking with the best cities to visit in 2024.

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