Hankering for some beach time, she shed style? Head to the UK. Many of the coastal villages offer stunning seaside vistas, all enjoyed from the cutest little beach huts you ever saw. These beach huts are often available to rent by the day and create a comfortable home-away-from-home at a very affordable price.
From Brighton to Whitstable, these small historic towns dotting the English coastline have something in common. Beach huts, like colorful Monopoly houses, rim the sandy beaches, offering their owners or daytrippers comfortable shelter and unparalleled ocean views. Apparently UK residents have caught on to the brilliance of owning a little piece of beachfront property and sales of beach huts have climbed strongly in the past few years.
But despite the buying frenzy there are still many beach huts for rent by the day or week. The majority are designed similarly to she sheds — a large room with comfortable seating and a spot to make tea or arrange picnic meals. They do not have bathrooms or full-service kitchens. Some, however, are rented as overnight accommodations; they are larger and have two floors, full baths and perhaps a kitchenette. Prices vary according to the level of amenities you want.
The Little Beach Hut Co.
One of our favorite places to recommend is The Little Beach Hut Company. Formerly owned by Jane Ashmore and featured in our 2021 She Shed Living Calendar, the company offers a handful of small and beautifully appointed beach huts on Mersea Island. Mersea Island is off the coast of Essex, northeast of London and known for its oyster production and now, tourism and yachting services. Even back in ancient Roman times, locals came to the Island for a bit of fresh salt air.
There are five huts, each with a distinct personality. All of them are clustered near a restroom area, a playground and cafe. They welcome small families and other gatherings to spend the day relaxing and sipping favorite beverages.
Kitty, our calendar girl, is one of the prettiest huts. She boasts an impressive little snack area with a farmhouse sink and two long padded benches for seating or an afternoon nap. Deck chairs, umbrella, changing room, USB charger, dishware and tea items are available to that you don’t have to bring much with you to be comfortable. Daily rate for the Kitty is about $110.
Cary Arms & Spa
For a more luxurious experience, places like the Cary Arms & Spa have got you covered. Located in the English Channel Inlet between Teignmouth and Torquay (looks like you can see France from your living room), Cary Arms & Spa features a row of cheerful and well-appointed huts that will make you think seriously about chucking the suburban house and going tiny.
A king bedroom awaits upstairs with a porthole view of the sea. Downstairs is a comfy sectional, large-screen TV, Netflix and a cozy built-in gas fire beneath. You have a modern bath with waterfall shower, kitchenette for drinks and snacks (save your appetite for the adjoining hotel) and complimentary wine and sloe gin. Evening dining and hearty breakfasts can be had at the hotel’s main location.
Suffolk Secrets: The Mayflower
For a very casual place to hang out, dry your towels and absorb an ancient coastal vista, get on board The Mayflower. The Mayflower is one of six beach huts run by Suffolk Secrets along the coast of Southwold. Like many coastal villages, Southwold began as a fishing center and now is better known for its leisure and historical pastimes. Rent by the day or week and enjoy a quintessential English seaside holiday.
The Mayflower is a clean and pretty blue and white hut, with plenty of deck chairs and snack tables. There is a gas cookplate for making tea and a beach umbrella. Inside is a comfy bench but there isn’t a place to lie down so this hut is a good bet as an add-on to your local cottage or house rental. There are plenty of family cottages to be had in Southwold.
Beachcroft Beach Hut Suites
The Beach Hut Suites are another luxury option for when you want the sand between your toes and then a nice hot shower right after. Located on the beautiful Felpham Beach in West Sussex, the huts are part of The Beachcroft Hotel. There are four huts built in a unique modern style (almost like the prow of a ship). Each one offers a king bedroom, shower bath, a small children’s bunk room (for 2) and a large family room on the main level.
The area is rife with history and so many interesting sites are within walking distance. If you ever get tired of gazing at the sea, go visit the picturesque cottage where poet and printmaker William Blake lived with his wife Catherine (and began working on Milton for all you English Lit geeks). Explore South Downs Regional Park and visit numerous villages like Felpham and Littlehampton.
Other goodies include a bottle of rosé and sloe gin (what’s with the sloe gin?) on arrival. Free Netflix, large flat screen TV, breakfast delivery from the hotel, private parking and two adult bicycles for use during your stay.
Seeing England from the cozy embrace of a she shed-like beach hut sounds like the perfect summer vacation.