Highcliffe Beach

Highcliffe Beach is located between the historic town of Christchurch and the picturesque village of Highcliffe-on-Sea. The beach comprises a series of breakwaters that have created cove-like wide sand and shingle beaches backed by a gravel promenade and sandy cliffs.

The beach offers stunning views of the Isle of Wight and the Needles and is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. It is also popular with dog walkers, as it is dog-friendly all year round.

RNLI lifeguard service is provided at this beach during July and August.

Access to the beach is by a gravel path leading down from the car park at the top of the cliffs is just off Waterford Road, BH23 5DA (Google map). See further down the page for car park details and parking charges.

Just next to the car park is Cliffhanger Cafe https://www.cliffhanger-restaurant.com. There are toilets next to the cafe but none on the beach. Highcliffe Castle is just a short walk away.

Cliffhanger Cafe at the top of the cliffs overlooking the beach https://www.cliffhanger-restaurant.com

Highcliffe Top Car Park

Sat Nav postcode is BH23 5DA. This large cliff top car park has a capacity for 424 cars. Car park charges are given below. Payment can be made using cash, phone or using an online app (JustPark, RingGo or PayByPhone).

More information can be found on the https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/Parking/ website

Highcliffe Top Car Park Charges

1 hour£1.70£1.90
2 hours£2.80£3.30
4 hours£4.80£6.10
12 hours£9.30£10.40
Charges apply 24 hrs, 7 days. Maximum stay 12 hrs. It is FREE to park from 1 October – 31 March. Information updated 06 March 2023
Map showing the location of Highcliffe Beach and also the car park on the corner of Wharncliffe Road and Waterford Road. Dogs are not allowed on the beach between H11 and H8 between 1 May and 30 September but are permitted on the gravel promenade if on a lead.

Walks from Highcliffe Beach

It is a very pleasant 2.5 mile walk along the beach to Mudeford Quay (which takes about 50 minutes) from where you can take the ferry across to Mudeford Sandbank.

If you are feeling really fit then you can continue to Hengistbury Head and then all the way along the promenade to Bournemouth Pier. It’s slightly over 9 miles and takes about 3 hours. You can then take the bus back to Highcliffe. This makes for a nice day out especially in the Spring or Autumn when it’s not too hot. A shorter, but equally good walk, is to Christchurch, again via Mudeford Sandbank and Hengistbury Head. It’s about 6 miles and takes about 2 hours if you take the short cut via Wicks Ferry. There are plenty of buses from Christchurch to bring you back to Highcliffe.

Shelter overlooking the beach next to the car park
View of the beach. You can see Friars Beach, Avon Beach, Mudeford Quay, Mudeford Sandbank and the dark headland is Hengistbury Head. In the very far distance you can see Swanage Headland.
Highcliffe Beach
Highcliffe Beach has been awarded a Blue Flag

Related Pages: Highcliffe Castle / Mudeford Quay / Mudeford Sandbank / Christchurch / Friars Cliff Beach / Avon Beach

Related Pages: Highcliffe Beach / Highcliffe Castle / Friars Cliff Beach / Avon Beach / Mudeford Quay / Mudeford Sandbank / Christchurch / Hengistbury Head / Southbourne Beach / Fishermans Walk / Boscombe Beach / Bournemouth Beach / Bournemouth / Durley Chine Beach / Middle Chine Beach