“ A beautiful sandy beach near Broadstairs, Kent, England. „
A month back I intended to take my little one to Broadstairs beach but finding the tiny parking-space completely filled I tried parking a bit further afield and accidentally sumbled across Stone Bay some 750 or so yards away. **About the Beach** ~Location ~ Eastern Esplanade, Broadstairs , Kent. Situated within 10 min walking distance from the Broadstairs town-centre , which has a train station.. This bay is sandwiched between Viking Bay and Broadstairs beach . Broadstairs can be reached through M2 and is about 76miles from Central London by road . ~Beach itself~ This is a lovely 200 metres golden sandy beach , walled by high limestone cliffs on one side. The promenade is set at a slightly higher level than the sand itself runs all the way to the main Broadstairs beach . What surprised us was that unlike Margate or Broadstairs beach ,(although this is very near to both of them ) this was nearly deserted and my little one had a gala half a day of frolicking in the sand quite undisturbed . Two sets of pathways made on the cliff walls run down to the sand , one a set of steps and another a pram/wheelchair ramp on the other side, there is an ice-cream van stationed on top here and the ramp lets in vehicals associated with trailers carrying boats and of owners of the deck-houses. Just below the wall sits a row of those wooden shed-like beach-houses/sheds and from one of these you can rent the usual deck-supplies at reasonable too...or even rent one of those. There are several natural rock-pools in the area and my little one loved dragging out seaweeds with her rake , not my idea of fun , as the sea-weeds let out a fishy smell , but apparently she thought it was entertaining. ~Toilet Facility~ There are toilet with baby changing facilities too, only two ladies ones . I did not find the toilets that clean, there was water everywhere and no toilet paper, overflowing bins maybe this was because loads of people staying in those beach-sheds were using only those 4-5 toilets for all their daily needs. There are no shower or separate changing facilities other than these . ~History~ On reading later on I learnt that Stone Bay was also the setting for John Buchan's book 'The 39 Steps' which further adds to the romanticism of the place **Parking Facility** Parking is free and off-road and in plenty and as several ramps and steps lead down to the water front one can park a bit further down really. The area is mostly residential , with loads of beach front apartments and quaint guest-houses. When walking along the promenade towards Broadstairs you can see a huge parking area for trailers of motor/sail boats so I am assuming you can keep your yatch or motorboat here . **Food and Restaurants ** As for food..hmm that is a bit tricky , you have to trek a bit (about 750yards or so) towards Broadstairs beach and there you can choose from the a whole list of cafes,ice-cream parlours , resturants and chippy shops .As the eating places are somewhat far away the place is somewhat devoid of screeching gulls and this makes it somewhat tranquil. I have eaten at some of the places here on previous occasions and most are quite reasonable and serve some excellent food and drinks . **Miscellaneous Information ** In the summer-times usually 1st May to 30th September dogs are not allowed in the sandy part of the beach . The above reminds me , the walkway around the car-park is full of dog-poo so it's a good idea to keep a sharp look out or you could land on one. You have to keep a keen eye on children though as this beach is not guarded by lifeguards as the other nearby ones are but there are loads of emergency supplies harboured around . The sea-water temperature remains quite low around this area even in the height of summer as is true for most beaches in the UK. Along the sea-front on the cliff are loads of houses/rooms/chalets and apartments on rent. Other than the inadequate toilet facilities I didn't find anything to complain about and we enjoyed our stay immensely. On top of everything everything was free except a few ice-creams and a meal...what more can one ask for. So if you are looking for a quiet and peaceful place to go with children this summer I would definitely recommend going to the picturesque Stone Bay. I have used a part of the same review on Helphound too under the same username.