Rhossili Bay in the Gower was today named one of the world’s best beaches in the Travellers’ Choice Beaches awards, announced by TripAdvisor, the world’s largest travel site*.
Rhossili Bay beat beaches in Spain, Greece, Italy and Turkey to be named third best beach in Europe for the second year in a row, and also keeps its title as the UK’s number one. The Welsh beach even managed to jump up the ranks in the world list this year taking it from 10th to 9th place above those in the Seychelles, South Africa and more tropical destinations.
Woolacombe Beach in Devon was named the UK’s second best beach while Cornwall’s Porthminster Beach took third place.
“These awards recognise the best beaches in the UK and worldwide, according to the travellers that have visited and given them the highest levels of praise,” commented James Kay, TripAdvisor spokesperson. “To have three British beaches named among the best in Europe just goes to show how lucky we are in the UK to have such stunning scenery right on our doorstep.”
The Gower beats the Seychelles and South Africa in the seaside stakes
Rhossili Bay’s triumph against beaches in such glamorous destinations as Mexico, Brazil and Australia goes to prove that travellers don’t need to travel half way around the world to find a great beach.
The largest expanse of white sand on the Gower Peninsula, Rhossili Bay stretches for three miles and it is this vast stretch of sand and towering cliffs which make it popular with surfers, paragliders and ramblers alike. The village of Rhossili itself is steeped in history and the wreck of the Helvetia, which ran aground on Rhossili Bay in November 1887, can still be seen on the beach today.
Cllr Nick Bradley, City & County of Swansea Cabinet member for Regeneration said, “This is fantastic news! The national and international exposure that this award brought Rhossili Bay in 2013 was both appropriate for all those involved in its upkeep and significant in terms of the impact it has had on the tourism industry locally and nationally. Our natural resources and in particular our coastline are what make Swansea Bay one of the most attractive destinations in the UK for holidays and short-breaks.”
Cornwall and Devon compete for most wins
In the battle for the title of county with the most wins, Cornwall and Devon put up a good fight. The two counties are well-known for their beautiful beach credentials and in this year’s awards both feature four beaches in the UK’s top 25.
Devon celebrates one entry in the Europe’s best list with Woolacombe Beach, which is named second best in the UK and seventh in Europe, while Cornwall features twice in Europe’s top 25 with Porthminster Beach in St Ives and Perranporth Beach third and fifth place respectively in the UK and ninth and 22nd in Europe.
Brazil celebrates world win
Baia do Sancho in Brazil’s Fernando de Noronha, an archipelago with UNESCO world heritage status, has been crowned the number one beach in the world.
A bay of crystalline water and soft white sand, this beach is surrounded by towering cliffs that are covered by vegetation that attracts a multitude of exotic wildlife.
Travellers’ Choice Beaches Award-winners were determined based on the quality and quantity of traveller reviews and ratings for beaches on TripAdvisor gathered over a 12-month period.
For the complete 2014 Travellers’ Choice Beaches Awards winners and more reviews, opinions and candid traveller photographs, go to http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/TravellersChoice-Beaches. (Please note this link will be live with 2014 results on Tuesday 18th March).
TripAdvisor’s Traveller Choice Beaches Awards winners:
Top 10 Beaches in UK:
1. Rhossili Bay, Gower, Wales
2. Woolacombe Beach, Woolacombe, Devon
3. Porthminster Beach, St Ives, Cornwall
4. Hengistbury Head, Bournemouth, Dorset
5. Perranporth Beach, Perranporth, Cornwall
6. Longsands Beach, Tynemouth, North Tyneside
7. Weymouth Beach, Weymouth, Dorset
8. Fistral Beach, Newquay, Cornwall
9. Sandbanks, Poole, Dorset
10. Nairn Beach, Nairn, Scotland
Top 10 Beaches in Europe:
1. Rabbit Beach, Lampedusa, Italy
2. Playa de ses Illetes, Formentera, Spain
3. Rhossili Bay, Gower, Wales
4. Playa de las Catedrales, Ribadeo, Spain
5. Elafonissi Beach, Elafonissi, Greece
6. Cala Mariolu, Baunei, Italy
7. Woolacombe Beach, Woolacombe, United Kingdom
8. Iztuzu Beach, Dalyan, Turkey
9. Porthminster Beach, St Ives, United Kingdom
10. La Concha Beach, Donostia-San Sebastian, Spain
Top 10 Beaches in the World:
1. Baia do Sancho, Fernando de Noronha, Brazil
2. Grace Bay, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos
3. Flamenco Beach, Culebra, Puerto Rico
4. Rabbit Beach, Lampedusa, Italy
5. Whitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Island, Australia
6. Playa de ses Illetes, Formentera, Spain
7. Anse Lazio, Praslin Island, Seychelles
8. Lanikai Beach, Kailua, Hawaii
9. Rhossili Bay, Gower, Wales
10. Playa Norte, Isla Mujeres, Mexico