A Family Trip to Shell Bay

Shell Bay Sand DunesShell Bay

I thought I knew every beach and bay along the Dorset coastline Shell Bay being one of my favourites.
Recently, a friend took me somewhere that I had not heard of…… he introduced me to the “other” Shell Bay! Shell Bay is normally accessed from the National Trust car park by the chain ferry to Sandbanks. You then cross the boardwalk through the marsh at the eastern end of Studland Beach, it has the best swimming for Studland and the beach is at its widest. This is my favourite part of Studland beach for the summer months, but it is always very busy when the sun is shining.


Shallow Warm WaterThe Secret Beach

My friend suggested rather than crossing the boardwalk, that we should walk back up the road and cross over. From here there are some hidden footpaths that go through some sand dunes. They bring you out onto the shores of Poole Harbour looking out to Brownsea Island. Here, there were a handful of families enjoying the glorious sunshine. The water was calm, warm and shallow for a long way out, ideal for the younger children. Studland beaches become quite crowded when the sun is out, and this hidden spot has given us a new place to go. When heading to Studland as the heatwave hits, we now know where we can hide in a quiet corner tucked away from the crowds.


BBQ on the beachBBQ On The Beach

We parked ourselves on a grassy area in the sand dunes and spent an afternoon playing in the water, with the children and dogs splashing in the shallows and drinks being sipped by grown-ups at the water’s edge. Then as the sun went down over the Isle of Purbeck, BBQs were lit and the were children fed. The journey home was a quiet one, with tired Kids snoozing in the back of the car and relaxed parents grinning in the front!



Dining Out

Of course, if you do not fancy watching the sun go down cooking your own BBQ, just amble along the shoreline to the fantastic Shell Bay Restaurant. I can not recommend this seafood restaurant enough, the food is stunning, the staff are great and the view is to die for especially as the sun sets over Brownsea Island and the Purbeck Hills.

Browse cottages in the Swanage and Purbeck Area.