If you’re in search of the best beaches in Meath, you’ve landed in the right place.
There’s endless things to do in Meath, however, its gorgeous coastline is often missed by those visiting for the first time.
And, while there isn’t a huge number of beaches in Meath, there are several that are well worth sauntering along.
Below, you’ll find some stunning sandy stretches in the Royal County along with some mighty beaches near Meath, too!
Some quick need-to-knows before visiting any beaches in Meath
Sadly, numerous water-based tragedies have occurred across Ireland in recent years. Before visiting any of the Meath beaches mentioned below, take a moment to read the following info.
1. Lovely looking water doesn’t mean safe
Never take it for granted that, just because there are others in the water, it’s safe for you to enter. If unsure, check for signs or ask locally.
2. Always check local news
Every few years some Meath beaches get hit with no-swim notices (this happens in many places in Ireland), usually due to some form of contamination. Before hopping in, Google the name of the beach and the word ‘news’ for the latest info.
3. Understanding water safety is crucial
Our favourite beaches in Meath
The first section of our guide is packed with our favourite Meath beaches – these are spots that we’ve returned to time and time again.
Below, you’ll find everywhere from Gormanstown Beach and Laytown Beach to Mornington Beach and more.
1. Laytown Beach
On a quiet day, Laytown Beach is hard to beat, and you’ll find it right beside the village of the same name. There’s a little parking area near the beach and there’s public toilets, too.
Laytown Beach connects to Bettystown and then on to Mornington Bay, so you can head for a nice long ramble here if you fancy.
This beach is also popular amongst swimmers, however, lifeguards are only present during the summer months.
2. Bettystown Beach
Bettystown Beach is connected to Laytown and it’s the busiest of the handful of beaches in Meath. This is another popular swimming spot but just keep in mind that you’ll only find lifeguards here during the summer months.
The town of Bettystown, located just next to the beach, comes alive during the summer, but it’s quietish during the cooler months,
This beach became famous in 1850 when an ancient brooch dating back to 710-750 AD, was found on its shores. The brooch is now known as Tara Brooch and is displayed at the National Museum of Ireland.
3. Mornington Beach
Mornington Beach is arguably the quietest of handful of beaches in Meath, and you’ll find it right at the mount of the River Boyne.
There’s a little bit of parking next to it and, for most of the year, it gets very little footfall, aside from locals looking to saunter along the sand.
When you arrive, keep and eye out for the Maiden Tower and the Lady’s Finger. The latter is, ehm, quite unusually shaped, as you’ll discover when you arrive.
4. Gormanstown Beach
Gormanstown is one of the most overlooked beaches in Meath, and it’s well worth visiting if you fancy a nice long stroll.
It’s sat right on the Meath/Dublin border and stretches for miles until it reaches Laytown, where you can cross the water at a little bridge).
The only disadvantage with Gormanstown Beach is that parking can be very tricky when the weather is fine.
You’ll often see people parked dangerously on the road leading to the beach, blocking paths – don’t be that person!
The best beaches near Meath
Now that we have our favourite Meath beaches out of the way, it’s time to see what sandy stretches lay a short drive away. Luckily, many of the best beaches in Louth are a handy drive away.
To calculate the distance in minutes, I’ve used Drogheda as the starting point. Many of these beaches are under a 20-minute spin away.
1. Seapoint Beach (10-minute drive)
Seapoint Beach is a stunner. The sand here is lovely and white and there’s the remains of a shipwreck visible as you make your way along the beach.
Also known as Termonfeckin Beach, you’ll find it in the very southeast of County Louth, where it offers stunning views of the Irish Sea.
Green Coast Awards are handed to beaches with excellent water quality and clean environments and Termonfeckin picked up this award in 2020 in recognition of its cleanliness.
2. Clogherhead Beach (15-minute drive)
There’s a gravel car park that’s conveniently placed right in front of the beach. It should be quiet enough, if you visit mid-week, but it can get wedged at the weekend.s
If you arrive when parking is scarce, head for the cliff walk car park and make the 40-minute or so across (the views out to the Mournes are incredible!).
3. Port Beach (20-minute drive)
One of County Louth’s longest beaches, Port Beach is a beautiful sandy spot that’s perfect for families (and just about anyone really!) to enjoy.
With gorgeous sunsets and stunning views of the Mourne Mountains, you might need to be dragged away from this one! You’ll find Port Beach just north of the Clogherhead and about halfway between Dundalk and Drogheda on the east Louth coast.
Those gorgeous waters mean that Port Beach has earned itself Blue Flag status, given to beaches with excellent water quality and high safety standards.
4. Annagassan Beach (20-minute drive)
Once the scene of marauding Viking invaders, Annagassan Beach is a far more relaxed place these days (thankfully!) and its quaint setting across from the Cooley Peninsula makes for one of Louth’s more alluring spots.
But while that history is never far away, there are plenty more reasons why people keep returning to Annagasson.
This a small place so there isn’t a ton of parking available, but you will find space just over the bridge and to your left-hand side as you approach the harbour. You can also nip into the nearby Glyde Inn for a post-ramble feed.
5. Blackrock Beach (25-minute drive)
If you like a lively beachfront with plenty going on then Blackrock Beach in County Louth could be just the ticket!
With a host of cracking bars and cafes separated from the beach by a historic 19th-century promenade wall, this alluring spot on the Louth coast has been a popular spot for decades. While your eyes might be immediately drawn to the main beach at the heart of town, don’t forget that there are actually several beaches around the Blackrock Village area.
You have the (conveniently-named!) Priests Beach just south of the Church of St Oliver Plunkett and then the quieter Ladies Beach on the other side. Then there’s also Blackrock Bay Beach then just north of that.
6. Gyles’ Quay (40-minute drive)
Despite its dark past, nowadays Gyles’ Quay is a popular destination. Situated in Maddoxland, in the past this beach was used by smugglers who imported illegal goods such as alcohol and tobacco on its shores.
This beach has been named after Roos Gyles who in 1780 decided to build a wooden structure on this site.
Through the years this structure has been rebuilt to become more resistant and it’s now made out of stone. Just like Templetown Beach, this location is swimmer-friendly.
7. Dundalk Bay (35-minute drive)
Dundalk Bay is the perfect place for those who love birdwatching. This beach is situated within walking distance from Gyles’ Quay and is a Special Area of Conservation.
In fact, its mudflat, intertidal sand and extensive saltmarshes make this the perfect location for bird-watchers.
Every day, more than 20,000 birds come here to get food and stroll around. Make sure to bring your binoculars with you, relax and observe these wonderful birds in their natural habitat.
8. Templetown Beach (45-minute drive)
With its alluringly sheltered location, Blue Flag status and a name referencing the Knights Templar, Templetown Beach is one of the most seductive corners of the gorgeous Cooley Peninsula.
In fact, on a summer’s day, there are few better spots to be! There is plenty of parking available all the way along the main promenade, though it’s probably best to arrive earlier to guarantee a space, especially at weekends and during the summer.
Grab a coffee from Rocksalt Café and saunter along the sand or soak-up sea views from the Blackrock Promenade.
What Meath beaches have we missed?
I’ve no doubt that we’ve unintentionally left out some brilliant beaches in Meath from the guide above.
If you have a place that you’d like to recommend, let me know in the comments below and I’ll check it out!
FAQs about the finest beaches in County Meath
We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘Which ones have blue flags?’ to ‘Which has the nicest sand?’.
In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.
What are the best beaches in Meath?
Personally, I tend to keep going back to Gormanstown Beach and Laytown Beach, however, Bettystown Beach and Mornington Beach are worth a look, too.
What are the most beautiful beaches near Meath?
Port Beach, Clogherhead Beach and Seapoint Beach are three of my favourite beaches near Meath, and each is well worth visiting.