The school holidays are almost finished, but this bank holiday is a time when many families and groups will be looking to head to the seaside to enjoy the sea air. 

The North East is no stranger to stunning coastlines, beautiful beaches and a plethora of hidden gems when it comes to fish and chip restaurants.

Company Sixt has ranked 300 beaches in England based on several factors that contribute to a perfect beach day and gave each beach a score out of ten on each factor before calculating their average to give a total out of ten.

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The factors that they include are bathing water quality data from the Environment Agency, the number of car parks and cafes within a 400-metre distance, equating to an average walking distance of five-minutes, alongside whether there's a seasonal on-duty lifeguard, and onsite toilets at each beach.

And, unsurprisingly, a jewel of the North East coast came in the top three. 

While Mablethorpe Town Beach in Lincolnshire and Cromer Beach took the top two spots, Whitley Bay Beach landed a third-place finish.

Whitley Bay stretches two miles of golden sand and holds excellent views over the North Sea.

This well-known beach is popular with dog walkers, offering a dog-friendly area to the north of Panama Gardens, and holds annual sandcastle competitions.

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With a choice of five car parks just 400m away, Whitley Bay Beach makes a great day trip for families, whilst six cafes within the same radius also offers visitors plenty to choose from. 

So, there we have it, if you want to head to the coast this bank holiday - Whitley Bay has taken the crown. 

Although we know there's also plenty of other locations that you can visit and have an amazing time over the long weekend.