Naturist / Nudist Beaches in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland
Botany Bay - near Margate Kent
Flat sand dunes at the quiet end of a spectacular sandy beach backed by low white cliffs. Easy access.
Botany Bay is located at Kingsgate on the north-eastern tip of Kent. It offers a long sandy beach with low cliffs, sand dunes and excellent clean waters. The area long used by naturists is to the north of the main beach. It involves a short walk and tends to be fairly quiet - apart from hot sunny weekends when some folk choose to avoid the masses on the main beach.
In 2009 local naturists have promoted the idea that the dunes to the north of Kingsgate beach could be designated as an "official" naturist beach.
Satnav: CT9 3EJ or CT9 3HL (easy climb), CT10 3SD (main beach access, walk along beach), CT9 3DQ (free beach level car park, but no acces at high tide)
Botany Bay is on the north-eastern-most tip of Kent. Getting there by public transport is fairly convenient. The nearest railway stations are Margate (3 miles away) and Broadstairs (2½ miles away), with a regular bus service (The 'Loop', till late) to Kingsgate. Get off in Knockholt Road, right by a cut through to the beach.
Car drivers who can usually find plenty of free on-street parking in roads close to the beach.
There are 3 access points
- The main beach access close to the pub - park on Percy Avenue or Kingsgate Avenue. The 'Loop' bus stops here. Access to the main beach is via two paved slipways (one with toilets). To reach the "naturist beach" from the main beach, turn left (i.e. northwest-wards) and walk about half-a-mile.
- There is an alternative access via a short but rough path down the cliffs half way along the beach. Park in The Ridings or Knockholt Road (The Loop bus stops by a cut through to the beach). There is a cross path and a 'danger cliff edge' sign by the start of the short path down. You can see the dunes on the way down.
- You can park for free on the beach by the Jet Ski World Cafe (access via a ramp off B2051 at the start of Palm Bay Avenue). Walk (east, right) along the promenade, and around Foreness Point but the this can be underwater and a problem at high tide.
Botany Bay has two beach areas. The main (southern) beach is the one favoured by most of the public and especially families. It's close to the pub, their cars, has toilet and snacks facilities and is usually manned by lifeguards in Summer months. The "naturist beach" involves a short walk to the northwest and comprises a sandy beach with a narrow strip of sand dunes backed by low chalk cliffs.
Naturists tend to settle on the edge of (or in) the flat dunes. Although the dunes can be overlooked from the clifftops and there are some walkers (often exercising dogs) along the waters edge, there are few (if any) problems about use of this part of the beach for naturism. The dunes are almost flat, and the dune 'grass' in short, providing little cover unless you are lying down. The beach has no shade unless you are right next to the crumbly cliffs.
This part of the coast provides a good view of the busy shipping lanes serving traffic from The Thames, the North Sea and the English Channel, so there's plenty to see and a pair of binoculars can be useful.
If you want to see what Botany Bay looks like, there are some photographs at: http://www.kentcoast.org.uk/nforelandpeg.html
The Beach Kiosk at Botany Bay also has a website at: http://www.thebeachkioskatbotanybaykent.co.uk/
In 2011, a NUFF reader reported that on the 7th April, Police appeared on the beach and took names and addresses of the only two naturists present, claiming that they had "received complaints". Hopefully, this will prove to be an isolated incident and will not be repeated during the summer.
In 2016, the beach seemed fine, there were no signs, naturists and the clothed seemed to be co-existing peacefully.
The only facilities at Botany Bay are: toilets on the access to the main beach; a kiosk selling light refreshments on the main beach; and the Botany Bay Hotel, a Shepherd Neame pub and restaurant on the clifftop about 150 yards from the beach access slipways.
There are no facilities on the area favoured by naturists.
In a word - excellent. This is the North Sea, though, so it can be chilly early in the season. The seabed is mostly sandy with few rocks - although non-swimmers need to be aware that the tides can create dips in the seabed sand.
Please leave a comment via the email address below. (Facebook comments no longer work in Europe, incl. the UK)
[Gary P] It’s a nice beach on a weekend. If you are going to go for a swim put your swimming costume on - the police have told the naturist they need put there clothes on when they go into water at low tide . It’s a very busy beach on Sundays so I would suggest going during the week day is more quieter . You get the same people there. One guy [redacted] said best advice keep away from [redacted] he will steal your stuff .
[Stacey W] I was there last week the genuine naturist are very nice mostly on left hand side of the beach mostly retired people . I have also notice in the last 4 years more anti - social behaviour [redacted] You have the meerkats that stand on beach with there clothes on just staring at you and etc . If the council made it a official optional clothing beach it be much better for us . Then they can get rid of the idiots that way . X 😀
Oh i can't waite to give this beach a go xx
Hi Brian, I have never been to B B always go to sandwich, I like the fact that older single men seem to go there there, given I am an over 50 gay man, suits me fine,
Now 2014 the beach at Foreness point end of Botany Bay, is still the most beautiful beach in Kent....in my view.
Oh My God, it's the best beach in Kent.
I love it here! It's Great!
Haven't had a chance to visit Botany for a long time, but today was warm and nice and I had a bit of spare time. Looking over the top before descending I saw a notice on a pole by the edge of the dunes and feared the worst. However on getting close enough to read it, felt better as it reads "No camping." Only a couple of others there, both clothed so I didn't chance it. Hopefully next year will be well supported again. Do visit- it is a lovely place.
I have been a regular sun worshiper at foreness point for the past eight years, It is the most beautiful seaside bay I have ever sunbathed on,with maybe one exception, that is Maspalomas beach Gran-canaria. the beach seems to have lost its popularity over the past few years for the nude bathers at least. I think mainly because the Local council seem to be anti nude bathing. but are reluctant to ban it outright.I have been approached twice in all this time by police who have been called out by a disgruntled member of the public after seeing a naked person on the beach, as most of us naked bathers recline in the dunes, and only go into the sea when the beach is clear of the people wandering along the waters edge
I hope in the future the secluded end of the bay ie foreness point end of Botany Bay, will become a clothes optional beach, to bring this countries beaches more in line with the rest of Europe
Tag and share your photos to the UK Naturist Beaches group on Flickr.
Photos should be of the beach, or show the way to it. They should NOT have people in them.
Updates and Trip Reports
Tag and share your photos
UK Naturist Beaches on Flickr
Follow us on Facebook
The beach descriptions originally came from the closed NUFF website.
Thanks to its authors.