Very close to the water: the best car beaches

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Autostraende Autostrand Germany Europe1

Feeling the sand under your feet, while a light wind blows through your hair, with the sound of the waves in the background - especially in summer, beaches with their unique and relaxed atmosphere magically attract people. So why not pack your bags, start the car and off to the nearest beach? Or even better: to the nearest beach. Yes, you read that right. Many European countries have beaches that visitors can legally drive to. We present six of the most beautiful car beaches here.

the best car beaches

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Driving to the beach: six beaches in Europe where you can do it without any problems
  • Six beautiful beaches in Europe where vehicles are allowed
  • Most car beaches are on the North Sea coast
  • With a few tips, you can drive safely and without worries on sand

Driving onto a beach sounds simple – and it usually is. Beach visitors should still follow some rules. It is important to drive only in the designated areas, even on car beaches, and if possible at walking speed. Some zones are cordoned off so that beachgoers can enjoy the sun undisturbed. Other spots, on the other hand, are too muddy or too soft to drive a car on.

It is also advisable not to underestimate the subsoil in the designated areas. Visitors with a four-wheel drive, such as those in the SEAT Ateca or the SEAT Tarraco, are best prepared for the sandy soil. With all-wheel drive, the likelihood of getting stuck in the sand is significantly reduced. If you want to be on the safe side, you can also lower the air pressure in the tires to improve driving characteristics on sand.

After visiting the beach, the vehicle should be washed thoroughly - including the underbody. Salt water also sticks to parts of the bodywork when driving slowly. Even the best precautions against rust can only help to a limited extent. It is advisable to get rid of the salt quickly. If you heed these simple tips, you will have a wonderful time on the following six car beaches:

Rømø Bilstrand and Sønderstrand (Denmark)

Denmark is known far beyond its own borders for its miles of sandy beaches, on which cars are allowed to drive. More than a dozen of these are located on the country's North Sea coast. On the island of Rømø, not far from the German-Danish border, are two of the largest and most popular car beaches: Bilstrand and Sønderstrand. The often strong wind from the North Sea provides good conditions for kitesurfing and windsurfing. But sunsets can also be wonderfully watched here - preferably with pillows, blankets and a thermos of tea from the trunk. Rømø is easily accessible by car thanks to the mounded and toll-free Rømødæmningen. The journey from Hamburg takes a little over three hours. Visitors can drive on the extensive sandy beaches without fees and all year round.

Autostrand Sankt Peter-Ording (Germany)

In Germany, the best place for beach lovers to drive their car is Sankt Peter-Ording - the only place in Germany with a car beach. The seaside resort on the North Sea coast in Schleswig-Holstein offers a beach car park at the bathing areas in Böhl and in Ording. In the summer, things tend to get lively here. Thanks to the large extent of the sandy beach, there is always a quiet place to sunbathe. In contrast to the car beach on Rømø, the beach in Sankt Peter-Ording is only open to vehicles from mid-March to the end of October and is subject to a fee.

AutoStrand Westkapelle (Netherlands)

The small town of Westkapelle is located in the south-west of the Netherlands in the Zeeland region. The beach is ideal for parking as close to the water as possible and watching the waves from there and is often visited by visitors with mobile homes. Access is free and possible at any time.

SEAT Tarraco 003 HQ
Driving on sand is easier if the vehicle has all-wheel drive – like the SEAT Tarraco here

Black Rock Sands (UK)

If you are planning a road trip through Great Britain, you should definitely plan this stop: With Black Rock Sands, visitors to North Wales have a kilometer-long sandy beach that they can drive on with their car for a small fee. Surrounded by the hills of Snowdonia National Park, the beach blends in with its surroundings in an almost picturesque way. And if you've had enough of sunbathing on the beach, you can stretch your legs on the more than 2.000 km long network of hiking trails in the national park.

Inch Beach (Ireland)

Great Britain's island neighbor Ireland also has some beautiful car beaches to offer. In County Kerry in the southwest of the island - in the middle of a bay - is Inch Beach. The beach stretches for more than five kilometers along a narrow promontory that juts out into the bay. White sandy beach, large dunes and the rough Atlantic: Inch Beach has the right corners to offer for water sports enthusiasts as well as for a relaxing day on the beach.

Prasonisi Beach (Greece)

In the Mediterranean region, motorists have to search a long time before they find a car beach. They are not widespread in Italy, Spain and France. In Greece, however, there are one or two sandy paths that lead to the car beach. For example, the narrow beach that connects the Prasonisi peninsula with the Greek island of Rhodes. The beach is particularly popular with kite surfers, who can bring their equipment directly to the water here. For several years, however, visitors have only been able to park in a part of the beach. The sea has taken back part of the sandy connection to Prasonisi anyway - this is no longer navigable. Photo credit: Seat

Autostraende Autostrand Germany Europe1

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