Here in our hot and sticky Somerset office, we’ve been dreaming about holidays. Crystal blue seas and golden sands are filling our filing cabinets and cramming our computer monitors! So, we’ve decided to pull together our personal choices of dream destinations to share with you. As there are so many, we’re going to do a few posts on this subject, starting today with favourite UK coastal spots.

With all this lovely weather around, staycations are becoming a popular choice. Avoid those airport queues and cramped plane seats by visiting one of these glorious British destinations, chosen by our team. This is where we’d go right now if we could...

South Beach, Studland, Dorset Tim, our go-to data man’s favourite

Travel time from Bath: 2 hrs

A little off the beaten track, it’s something of a hidden Dorset gem. Tim grew up in Dorset and this is one of his favourite places to visit:

‘Being Dorset born and bred, I know this stretch of coast really well.’ Tim tells us.

Why you'll love it

As well as the lovely sandy beach, the nearby dunes and heathlands are the perfect setting for those afternoon walks after a relaxing day on the beach. If hunger strikes, then head over to Joe’s Cafe. It’s situated right by the beach and is especially worth the trip for the homemade lemonade and ice-cream alone.

Ventnor, Isle of Wight Cat in Marketing's favourite

Travel time from Bath: 2 hrs, 20 mins

Cat has family on the Isle of Wight, and so is no stranger to the island’s beautiful coastal spots.

‘To me, Ventnor is the perfect seaside destination; it hosts beautifully faded Victorian architecture alongside bustling bars, beachside cafes and restaurants and a seafront with old bathing machines converted into beach huts. Take me there now, please...’

Boasting some of the best weather in the UK, the sun always seems to shine on this gentle coast and there’s even a touch of Hollywood about the place – Benedict Cumberbatch got married there in 2015.

Why you'll love it

As you arrive, you’ll zig-zag through the town’s steep, narrow roads, passing palm trees along the way. Then just along from the town beach to the east is the traditional village of Bonchurch, with its thatched stone cottages, a tiny 11th century church and a village duck pond. To the west is Steephill Cove - don’t miss the fresh lobster in The Boathouse Restaurant if you are feeling flash, or just as enjoyable, a crab pasty from The Crab Shed eaten on the beach...

Woolacombe, Devon Amy, our web content guru’s favourite

Travel time from Bath: 2 hrs, 50 mins

Woolacombe itself is a lively village with a variety of pubs, restaurants and places to stay. Amy has been going there regularly since she was only knee-high... ‘Woolacombe is a beautiful destination whether you want to surf, walk or sunbathe. If you fancy give surfing a try you can hire boards and wetsuits on the beach – no hassle!’

This laid-back corner of south-west England is popular with locals and visitors alike and attracts walkers, sun bathers and swimmers of all ages. Woolacombe Beach is three-miles long. The golden sand spans the north Devon coast between Morte Point and Baggy Point (Great name, huh?!)

Why you'll love it

The Red Barn is perfect for an après-surf meal and drinks; it’s been around for over 50 years. Look out for the surfboards on the ceiling! For a smaller cove, head to Barricane beach just around the corner from the main bay. You can spend hours picking out exotic sea shells and there are lovely coastal walks towards the village of Mortehoe. For a relaxed evening, watch the sunset with a Sri Lankan curry from the Barricane beach cafe.

Kynance Cove Beach, West Cornwall Micki, the master of stock’s favourite

Travel time from Bath: 4 hrs, 20 mins

Kynance Cove can be found on the west side of the Lizard peninsula in Cornwall. On a sunny day, the sea is turquoise and the sea looks as inviting as any Caribbean lagoon. Micki heads there at every opportunity...

‘I always try to visit Kynance whenever I need a day off from attempting to surf! The first time I visited it was a beautiful sunny day at low tide. I was in awe of the turquoise waters and views from the pathway leading down to the beach. In fact I think I need to book this year’s trip right now...’’

Why you'll love it

When the tide is out, a secret beach is revealed along with sea caves, perfect for exploring! It’s easy to lose a whole day at Kynance...swimming, relaxing or popping to the café for bite to eat. And of course, you can’t beat the traditional Cornish pasty...

Southport Lucy, our spreadsheet queen’s favourite

Travel time from Manchester: 1 hr, 15 mins

Southport is roughly half way between Liverpool and Preston on the Irish Sea coast in Lancashire. The town has the second longest seaside pier in the UK and extensive sand dunes run away to the south. Lucy visited Southport as a child and has fond memories...

‘A few times a year, whenever we fancied a family day out and some sea air, we packed up the car with blankets and flasks of tea and drove over to the Ainsdale Sand Dunes Nature Reserve just off the Southport coastal road. We spent hours walking our dog in the dunes and along the beach, before heading into Southport for a pub lunch. Happy days....’

Why you'll love it

Southport is popular for its Victorian Arcades and quirky cafés, and because it’s quieter than nearby Blackpool which gets much busier in the summer. There’s so much to do that you can go there over and over again and always find something new to see. If the British weather lets you down, it has everything from an indoor water park to a Lawnmower Museum!