With temperatures hitting 35 degrees in Surrey yesterday, we are all officially melting! You may be looking for somewhere to take a dip and cool off?
I am re-sharing our trip to Frensham Ponds - Surrey's very own beach.
We guessed a lot of people would head to the coast, so we drove into the Surrey countryside to visit Frensham Great Pond. We had a trip there two years ago and it's a great place to visit - and the added bonus of a sandy beach just 10 miles away from Guildford.
It is part of Frensham Common, a 1000 acre area south of Farnham, which is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and a Special Site of Scientific Interest.
The Great Pond is basically a man-made beach with soft sand and calm water, perfect for swimming in.
The ponds were created in the Middle Ages to provide fish for the Bishop of Winchester's estate.
The car park costs £4 all day, on a sunny day we'd suggest getting there before 11am as the car park can become quickly full up. We were already queueing to get in at 10.45am.
We set up near the the main "beach area" which is close to the snack bar, which serves hotdogs, burgers and ice creams (these are £1.80 and there are lots of flavours to choose from - I'd recommend the mango ice cream).
The whole area is beautiful, with yellow gorse in flower and various shrubs and woodland. I felt like we could have been in the Mediterranean.
We took our FieldCandy sunshade with us. Lots of families had pop up tents, but the sunshade worked brilliantly. The UV rated protection to UPF50+ offers maximum sun protection and blocks up to 99.7% of UV radiation. It is easy to put up and versatile. We tied part to the fence posts and used the tent pegs to pin the other side into the sand. It was pretty wind resistant and provided well-needed shade. It also got a lot of comments by passing families because of its cool watermelon design.
The water (or sea as my children called it) was chilly, but refreshing, there are two swimming areas with maximum depths of 1.2 and 1.4 metres which are marked off by buoys. The girls made a friend and they played in the water and buried each other (and Fin) in the sand.
The pond is surrounded by bulrushes and reeds and there are swans and ducks swimming around as well as boats from Frensham Boating Club.
We even spotted a snake slithering through the roughs I'm not sure whether it was an adder or a grass snake - but my daughter was very excited to see one in the wild.
After a few hours on the beach we explored the common using the footpaths which take you on a circular loop around the pond.
Dogs are not allowed on the beach area, but are allowed on the common, and there are parts which you are not allowed to walk through as they are conservation areas. Barbecues and camping are not allowed either and can incur a fine.
The Great Pond car park in Bacon Lane, is off off A287, south of Farnham, Surrey. We'd totally recommend going - we hope to go back soon and explore Frensham Little Pond in the summer.