Surfer's Paradise is heaven for campers
It’s one of Britain’s most popular surfing beaches – and for six weeks campers at a special site at Croyde Bay in Devon can guarantee they are first in line to enjoy the waves.
Surfer’s Paradise is aptly named – it takes less than a minute to get from your tent to the water. Even quicker if you run! But you’ll need to be quick off the mark if you want to stay at this site, because it’s only open for six weeks during July and August.
Run by Parkdean Holidays, who also operate nearby Ruda Holiday Park, the site is directly behind the sand dunes in acres of unspoilt meadow – a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
It opens on 17 July and closes down for the year at the end of August so opportunities to take advantage of such a prime location are limited. Pitches for tents and campervans start at £11 per night, and facilities include surf hire, picnic tables, weather and tide updates, toilets and hot and cold showers. You also get to use the facilities at Ruda, including the bars and restaurants.
Croyde Bay beach is owned by Parkdean and has recently been awarded a Seaside Award, which is presented by Keep Britain Tidy and sets the standard for the best beaches across the UK. The aim is to ensure visitors are guaranteed to find a clean, safe, attractive and well-managed coastal stretch.
The bay is also renowned as one of the best surfing beaches in the UK and features one of the UK's leading surf schools. Surf South West has been teaching in North Devon for 16 years and was first surf school to be named a Centre of Excellence by the British Surfing Association. Intermediate and more advanced coaching is also available.
SURFER'S PARADISE CROYDE BAY CAMPSITE
c/o Ruda Holiday Park, Croyde Bay, North Devon EX33 1NP
0344 335 3677
Open 17 July – 31 August
THE BEACH RANGER
Beach combing, feeding fish, tracking wild animals, rambling round rockpools and rescuing old Christmas trees are just some of the important jobs that beach ranger Rose Roberts is employed to do every day with her team at Parkdean Holidays Ruda Holiday Park in Devon.
Ruda Holiday Park covers 150 acres of coast and countryside in North Devon and includes award-winning Croyde Bay.
Environmental biologist Rose starts her day by following Devon’s coast road with amazing views of Saunton Sands and Bideford Bay before stopping at Croyde Bay to check on surf conditions so she can tell holiday makers what surf board will work best in the waves that day.
But asked what her favourite part of the job is, Rose said: “I support the Parkdean Entertainment team by running rockpool rambles, wild animal tracking sessions, bug hunts and beginners fishing for holiday makers of all ages, which is a really rewarding part of my job. The extra activities I run are specific to Ruda making it a great place for a longer holiday or somewhere holiday makers can return to year after year – there’s always something new to do and explore.”
She added “The geography on this part of the coast is pretty unique which means we often have perfect surf conditions but also have to take extra measures to preserve wildlife habitats. Croyde Bay is a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) with mobile sand dunes which move several metres every year. We use discarded Christmas trees in January to re-inforce these dunes, allowing plant roots to spread and make homes for the little creatures like adders, hedgehogs, badgers, foxes, rabbits, weasles and birds that we share the park with.”
Rose recently introduced the 2 Minute Beach Clean Campaign to Ruda where visitors can borrow a litter picker and bag to spend two minutes helping keep the beach pristine by filling a bag of rubbish.