Beaches in Thanet

Information about our award winning beaches

Thanet’s 15 sandy beaches and bays stretch from Pegwell Bay in the south to Minnis Bay in the north. Long famous for their beauty, this year we have been awarded six international Blue Flag awards and four Seaside Awards. If you are visiting the area more information about our beaches can be found on our tourism website Visit Thanet.

More information regarding our beaches can be found below.

Our bays are recognised by national awards such as the Blue Flag Awards and the Seaside Awards.

Click on the links below for information on access and facilities on Thanet’s beaches.

Blue Flag Awards – 2023

The prestigious European Blue Flag will be flying at six beaches in Thanet this Summer, which includes Minnis Bay; St Mildred’s Bay; Margate Main Sands, Botany Bay, Joss Bay and Stone Bay.

The Blue Flag is awarded in 50 countries for resort beaches with high standards of environmental management. Beaches must also meet the guideline standards of bathing water under EC legislation. Blue Flag beach criteria include beach cleanliness, dog control, wheelchair access, provision of facilities and provision of life saving equipment. For more information please visit The Blue Flag campaign website.

Seaside Awards – 2023

West Bay, Westbrook Bay; Viking Bay and Ramsgate Main Sands have achieved the Seaside Award, which rewards beaches in England that achieve the highest standards of beach management. The Award rewards beaches that have met strict criteria, including safety and cleanliness, including clean sands free of litter and dog fouling, good access with good facilities and water that complies with EC bathing water standards (mandatory).


Thanet’s beaches are ranked among the best in the UK!

During the Summer Season (15 May – 30 September) the Environment Agency undertakes water sample tests at ‘bathing water’ beaches. These are beaches which are popular for people to swim or paddle, so weekly water quality tests take place.

These tests rank the beaches from Excellent to ‘Poor’ – more detailed information on Thanet’s 2019 results is published by the Environment Agency.

These bathing water beaches are also more likely to have facilities like lifeguards, toilets and beach cafes or shops.

Lots of different things can affect the water quality on our beaches, but you can help keep the water at Thanet’s beaches clean, by:

  • Taking your litter away with you – including cigarette buts
  • Adhering to the by-laws which prevent dogs on our beaches during the summer season
  • Ensuring you don’t feed the birds as attracting them to our beaches means they can poo over the sea
  • Not pouring liquids down the drain as these can lead straight to the sea

Over recent years there have been a number of incidents where deposits of a substance believed to be palm oil have washed up on several of Thanet’s beaches.

Palm oil is a natural edible vegetable oil that is commonly used in food processing. Palm oil production can be linked to a number of environmental issues but it can create a secondary issue if released into the marine environment.

Palm oil can be come in a variety of forms and it’s important to keep a look out for it, especially if you are walking your dog on the beach. It is sometimes seen as a scattering of pebble-sized lumps that are white and waxy in appearance.

If you believe your dog has been in contact with the substance and are concerned about their health, please contact your vet as soon as possible.

The council monitor our beaches and will remove the substance from affected beaches when detected. We’ll also regularly post updates on affected beaches on our Facebook and Twitter channels.

If you see or suspect palm oil on the beach, or other items which have been washed up on the beach, please report your sightings with specific locations and photos where possible, to thanet.coast@thanet.gov.uk


For full details of booking procedures together with the prices contact Your Leisure on 03333 660 661 or visit Your Leisure website’

There is an excellent range of chalets available. They can be hired on a daily, weekly, monthly, seasonal and annual basis. The chalets are very popular with both visitors and local residents.

At some times there is a waiting list so please let us know your requirements at the earliest opportunity.


BBQs are not permitted on any of the Council’s land, however are permitted on beaches after 6pm.

Enjoying a barbecue is one the great things about living and visiting the Thanet coast. These guidelines will help you make the most of this opportunity, and ensure the seafront and open spaces stays safe for everyone – without spoiling your fun. Please follow these simple rules – below.   You can also help follow Thanet Coast Codes to reduce disturbance to marine and birdlife.

  • BBQs should only be used after 6pm on Thanet beaches.
  • Avoid using petrol or any other accelerants.
  • Be aware of other users around you, especially children, animals and wildlife.
  • Ensure BBQ is on a flat surface, well away from any structures, trees and shrubs, which may get damaged or be combustible.
  • Never leave BBQs unattended.
  • Do not use disposable BBQs on or near public benches or other furniture.
  • It is imperative that BBQs are placed above the ground and on an even surface either on slabs or bricks – to help prevent damage, such as to grass.
  • Ensure that the BBQ is fully extinguished and cooled before placing in bins. If no bins available please take them and all your other waste home for responsible disposal.
  • Please do not bury or dispose of your BBQ under any circumstances in the sand on any of our beaches, seafronts, soil or hedgerows, nor empty the contents in to the sea. The sand can get very hot which is a danger to other beach users.

The RNLI are annually contracted and paid for by TDC to manage the safety of all of our Blue Flag and Seaside Awards Beach’s. More information can be found on the RNLI website.


Did you find this page useful?

  • This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.