Canford Cliffs Beach (Poole)

Canford Cliffs has to be one of the quieter beaches on the south coast of Dorset, yet it ticks all the boxes for facilities with cafes, toilets, summer lifeguards and excellent Blue Flag water quality.

Located between Branksome Dene and Sandbanks, it is part of an affluent Bournemouth neighbourhood. Parking (limited on-street) is on Ravine Road and Western Road (50 spaces). Access to this broad sandy beach is down the Chine (narrow ravine) via paths and steps. The steep ascent laden with beach gear could be the reason why the beach is rarely crowded!

The beach has flat light golden sand which is firm enough for ball games and building some decent sandcastles. There is a soccer pitch on the beach which is actually used by the England Beach Soccer Team for training.

The clear water has gentle waves and is safe for swimming in the designated Swim Zone. The backdrop is a steep chalky cliff and conservation area covered in greenery and home to local wildlife.

Popular with families and locals, the edge of the beach is lined with beach huts which can be rented from Poole Council. They are ideal for storing chairs and beach gear.

Type of beach


Lifeguard service


Dogs friendly beach?

Dog ban from 1 May until 30 September although allowed after 6pm all year. Dog bins are present.

Dorset dog friendly beaches »


  • Swimming/bathing


  • Shop

Nearest town



BH13 7PS

OS grid ref.

SZ 0600 8921

Water quality

Water quality star rating


Blue Flag AwardMarine Conservation Society Recommended

Submit a correction

What did we get wrong?