5 of Britain’s Best Lake, River and Loch Beaches

Enjoy inland swimming at its finest at these beautiful river, lake and loch beaches in some of Britain’s most beautiful rural locations!

Cotswold Country Park and Beach, Gloucestershire

Cotswold Water Park

Open from March until early October, these two stunning lakes offer one of the best all-round inland beach experiences you could wish for.

In 2017 the operators added 100 tons of new sand to the beach, so it’s perfect for a swim and relax on the shore afterwards. There are also zorbs, kayaks, paddle boards, pedaloes and a WiBit Aqua Park, so it’s perfect for the whole family.

Gaddings Dam, Todmorden, West Yorkshire

man swimming with dog

Not just a spectacular location for a wild swim, this high-altitude hideaway offers Britain’s highest beach.

A two and a half km walk to the top of the moors ensures that Gaddings is rarely overcrowded. It also means it’s exposed to the elements, but when the sun’s shining there really is nowhere like it to sit on the shore or take a dip.

Loch Morlich, the Cairngorms, Scotland


The beautiful, award-winning sandy bay of Loch Morlich offers fresh water, stunning scenery and a beautiful beach. When the weather’s warm, there’s nowhere like it!

Water-sports, woodland walks and the peaks of the Cairngorms are just a few of the attractions in the area. Or you could just sit on the sand and marvel at the surrounding scenery.

Frensham Great Pond, Surrey


A lovely inland beach that’s as popular with wildlife enthusiasts as it is sun-seekers, the Great Pond offers a man-made beach stretching around the clear waters of the lake.

Take a dip or enjoy a woodland walk with a little bit of nature-spotting; it’s a wonderful inland adventure and a perfect place for a little wild swimming.

Rydal Water, the Lake District, Cumbria


Small, scenic and warmer than its neighbour Grasmere, Rydal is the perfect place for a scenic swim.

Its picturesque scenery provides a feast for the eyes too. Wordsworth was taken by the view, and there are few nicer places to sit on the shore, enjoy a picnic and find your own inspiration.

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