This is one of the quieter beaches in the area. It is dog free in the summer and is sandwiched between two blue flag beaches. It is without doubt a beautiful beach.
There is a pleasant path (Flaghead Chine Road) that leads down to the beach along the bottom of the chine from Haven road at the top.
The path is about 400 yards in length and presents few challenges. The beach does have toilets and an ice-cream franchise as well as a new small beach garden with seating.
So why is the beach so quiet? You may well ask.
Flaghead Chine: The Big Issue. (Or Is It?)
Parking is the problem. Few people are prepared to walk a distance more than 400 yards to get to any beach. Especially if they have to get there by walking through the equally fine beaches like Canford Cliffs Beach or Shore Road Beach first. After all, why continue walking when you are already in a fine beach area?
The alternative is road access. While there are intermittent bursts of street parking beyond the end of the path called Flaghead Chine Road, getting parked and then to the beach does involve a bit of luck and potentially a route march.
Flaghead Chine: A Quieter Beach
However if you are just wandering along the beach, looking for a quieter yet equally fine area then Flaghead Chine is for you. I find that boisterous family groups don’t quite reach this far. Both Shore Road beach and Canford Cliffs beach on either side of it have better facilities. The result is that a family group may well set out for Flaghead beach but when they find a suitable space before getting there take that instead. The family groups that do get there seem a little more organised than elsewhere.
This makes Flaghead Chine beach more of a calm and adult friendly beach than the others. So if you are happier away from hoards of rioting kids, and the assorted beach paraphernalia that they need, and you are prepared to walk a few hundred yards, a here’s a beach to love.
This is I hasten to add is still a family beach. It is sought out by many family groups but they seem more interested in sand castles than slot machines.
A Beach Garden
A somewhat avant-garde small beach garden has been recently built here with some seating . It is a small area but it does look quite pretty. Let’s hope it gets maintained.
Flaghead Chine Beach Huts
Four new beach huts were added when the beach garden was rebuilt in 2018. These back up a main batch of thirty-six double-decker beach huts. These beach huts appear to rented out on a yearly tender rather than short term but you can find more information on them HERE. There are also another two standard single decker huts in this stretch just before the beach kiosk.
Be aware that if you want to join the waiting list for a beach hut at Flaghead Chine, then the typical waiting period is five years. This is actually good! There is only one place with a shorter time. For Sandbanks it is twenty years!
I have only ever visited Flaghead Chine by walking down from Canford Cliffs Beach to it. So here’s my best guess.
All parking information on this site is provided as-is and untested. I cannot guarantee it is correct. You use it at your own discretion and risk.
Haven Road on-street parking (BH13 7LP)
This is paid on street parking and there are only 18 spaces. This is a 12-15 minute walk. I put it first here because for some bizarre reason it appears on the local government website as the only suitable car park. It is not.
Shore Road Car park (BH13 7PN)
This by my reckoning is a 10 minute walk to Flaghead chine along the beach. Obviously you are competing with parkers for the Shore Road beach and there are only 70 spaces.
Sandbanks Beach car park (BH13 8QJ)
This is a large car park though fairly distance from Flaghead Chine. It has 535 spaces. Obviously, as with Shore Road Car Park, you are in competition with beach users who are targeting the main beaches in this area.
If you do park here and specifically want to get to Flaghead Chine then you will have to walk along the road or the beach. Depending on what you are carrying will decide which is easier.
If you choose the road then have about a 1.25 miles to walk (say 30 minutes). Annoyingly you have to do a loop around the Sandbanks Hotel and come down shore road.
Alternatively (I think! barring beach closures) you can just walk along the beach until you get to Flaghead Chine. This cuts out the loop and is just under a mile (say 18 minutes)
Beach Road Car park (BH13 7BE)
This is the large car park for Branksome Chine Beach and Canford Cliffs Beach. It holds 368 cars. You could park here and walk down to Canford Cliffs beach. Then you could walk west along the promenade to Flaghead Chine. It is in total about 1.5 miles (say 30mins)
There is all sorts of ad-hoc paid/free parking around the roads here. But do not get your hopes up. Not only does it often have restrictions on it but it is usually fills from a very early hour. Then you find your self committed to going around to try and get in elsewhere.
Basically parking anywhere near sandbanks at the height of the holiday season is a nightmare. If you want to do it then If I was you I’d set out early. I’d aim for the main Sandbanks beach car park. But opportunistically take whatever street parking I found on the way.