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South Ayrshire

The beach area is mainly sand with an area of shingle to the south and it boasts magnificent views of Isle of Arran and one of the most beautiful sunsets in the west coast of Scotland. There are points along the beach which small sailing crafts can be launched and windsurfing and fishing also take place.  Facilities include a children’s play area, indoor soft play, picnic areas, shops, toilets and a putting green.  A walk along the Prestwick shorefront would take you past St Nicholas Golf Club or Old Prestwick Golf Course, home of the first Open Golf over 150yrs ago as well as Prestwick sailing club.


Prestwick's name comes from the Old English for "priest's farm", as the town was originally an outlying farm of a religious house.

From Robert the Bruce to James VI, King of Scots, numerous Kings have traversed the coastal walks in and around Prestwick and Troon. Bruce is reputed to have been cured of leprosy by the waters of the well at St Ninians church. The well still exists behind the church.

The Prestwick Bathing Lake, known as the Lido, was opened in 1931 by the Secretary of State for Scotland, William Adamson. It was the largest swimming pool north of the border and could accommodate 1200 bathers and 3000 spectators.  It hosted swimming galas, diving exhibitions, moonlight swimming sessions and regular fireworks displays. It was closed in 1972 and subsequently demolished.

Natural Space

Prestwick is a long, mostly sandy beach, with some pebbles, offering excellent views out over the Firth of Clyde across to the mountainous Isle of Arran. To the south of the car park, the beach is backed by a grassy area that is popular for family picnics. The area is popular with golfers, and the northern end of the beach is backed by Prestwick Golf Club, whilst the Prestwick St Nicholas Golf Club is at the southern end.


Prestwick has a 1-mile (1.6 km) long esplanade alongside Prestwick Bay, part of the Firth of Clyde. It has two children's playgrounds. At the north end Kid'zplay, an indoor activity centre, can be found next to the large play area that was formerly the large open air swimming pool. Parallel to the esplanade is a line of large houses overlooking Arran.

Water Quality Information

This beach is a designated bathing water site. An electric sign displaying real-time bathing water quality predictions is available at this beach between 1 June - 15 September. You can also find out the daily prediction by visiting the SEPA website. Please observe local signage and only swim where it is safe to do so. 


Toilets are opened 7days/week 9am to 10pm between April and October and 10am to 7pm during winter months.

Contact Details

South Ayrshire Council
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