curved building with balconies and windows overlooking the sea in scarborough

Fabulous Scarborough accommodation. Self catering at the Sands

From the moment I dumped my bags and stepped out onto my balcony at the Sands holiday apartments complex I felt the stresses and strains of a crazy couple of years melt away. The view of the North Sea Coast, crashing waves and castle are the perfect additions to this gorgeous Scarborough Accommodation. Self catering is often my favourite way to holiday in the UK with kids as it offers so much freedom. And our two bed apartment had everything we needed.

view from high up on a hill looking down at white apartment block next to a yellow sandy beach is scarborough
The Sands enjoys an amazing location overlooking the Sea

We were invited to stay at the Sands in Scarborough in exchange for this review. As always all opinions are our own.

About the Sands

The Sands complex in Scarborough is home to 70 luxurious self catering apartments. Many with a lovely sea view overlooking North Bay Beach. This is 5 star self catering accommodation at it’s best with everything you could need to be fully self contained but with plenty of restaurants, bars, cafes and activities within walking distance.

sands self catering accomodation
Everything you need is located on the ground floor under the apartments

Self Catering Accommodation options

There is literally an option for every sized family or group available. From cosy one bed apartments through to luxurious 5 bed penthouses with spa baths and panoramic balconies.

Have a look at the many accommodation options at the Sands over on their website.

lady sat on a balcony taken from inside an apartment. the sky is bright blue and she is enjoying a morning coffee

Our two bed apartment at the Sands

We had a gorgeous two bedroom apartment overlooking the beach. The first thing I noticed was how spotlessly clean the whole place was. It’s always a relief when trying somewhere new. You can really tell that the people who work here care about making your holiday as best as it can possibly be. There were some sweet decorative features around the apartment but it is mainly contemporary and simple by design.


The bedrooms were both generously sized with very comfortable beds, crisp white linen, towels and even bathrobes for the stay. The main bedroom had a king sized bed, heaps of storage space and an ensuite bathroom.

double bedroom neatly made up with blue check cushions and curtains and white linen

The second room had twin beds, a wardrobe and view of the balcony area. Both rooms had wall mounted TVs, perfect for letting the kids enjoy a lazy morning watching cartoons while you relax on the balcony with a coffee.

twin beds with white linen infront of a red wall with red tartan cushions on each

Living Space

The living space is plenty big enough for a family of four. Brightly decorated with soft, cosy sofas and a huge dining table. There’s a large TV in the corner, music system and a Nintendo Wii. The best part for me was the large balcony with table and chairs, a perfect sun trap in the morning and the best place to enjoy a glass of wine as the sun goes down.

yellow walled living room with corner TV and two comfy beige sofas. one side of the wall is glass sliding doors out to a small balcony


The kitchen was extremely well stocked with everything you need for cooking. Not that we did much of that! It had a dishwasher – the perfect addition for a family holiday as surely no one wants to wash up! And a washing machine if you need to get some laundry done.

kitchen area with all the equipment you need

I loved that there was a coffee machine with a few pods ready and waiting for us and plenty of crockery so we didn’t feel we were having to constantly wash up.

shiny sliver lavazzo coffee machine

The welcome folder has detailed instructions for all the appliances, something which is so often over looked in self catering holidays. We were also given a small welcome pack with tea, sugar, biscuits and crisps plus a very much appreciated bottle of milk in the fridge.

welcome pack containing crisps, tea bags and biscuits

There was also a vacuum, mop, washing up liquid and dishwasher pods, a safe, ironing board and more.


The main family bathroom was a brilliant size and had a bath with overhead shower. This is so helpful when traveling with little kids who often refuse to take a shower.

main bathroom with toilet, sink and bathtub it is beige and white

The ensuite again was a good size with a powerful shower and towel warmer. Both bathrooms had small bottles of shampoo, conditioner, lotion and shower gel.

row of 4 small toiletries in front of a large mirror


The balcony had seating for three and a small table. The views made this my favourite place to sit in the apartment.

balcony with three seats with glass railing overlooking a beach and the sea

Facilities at the Sands, Scarborough

The complex has a small but well equipped gym. We preferred to get our exercise by playing in the sea and walking the Cleveland Way but I would have definitely tried this out if we were staying longer.

gym with work out equipment on a green floor at the sands apartment complex

There is a One Stop grocery shop onsite where you can buy everything you will need for your stay from food to alcohol to games for the kids.

one stop grocery shop

Where to eat at this Scarborough Accommodation – Self catering made easy

Whilst you could easily cook every meal in your well equipped kitchen it’s nice to leave the hard work to someone else on holiday. There are plenty of options within the sands complex and close by. We ate at the onsite pub Taylor’s which served fantastic pub grub and had a very friendly atmosphere.

huge beefburger in brioche bun with three onion rings on the top next to a huge pile of chips and some coleslaw on a blue plate
It was delicious!

There’s also the lovely Saltwater cafe which has some brilliant breakfast and brunch options. And finally for your sweet treats there’s Creams coffee shop which serves some of the most extravagant desserts in Scarborough. Perfect for treating the kids after a long day in the waves.

Parking at the Sands in Scarborough

Parking at the Sands is really easy and included in your stay. You’ll find the gated car park just next to the entrance to the Sands, just pull up to the gate and they’ll buzz you in and tell you which space you can use. I found the spaces plenty big enough to manoeuvre in and out. Once you have your key you can buzz yourself in. There is an electric car charging space available to use, just let reception know if you require this service.

underground carpark
You’ll be given your own parking space here

There is one dedicated parking space per apartment. If you have more than one car you can use the free carpark at the top of the hill near Peasholm Park. It’s just a ten minute walk back to the apartment.

What to do with kids at this self catering accommodation in Scarborough

Kids will absolutely love a stay at The Sands. The apartments are very child friendly with plenty of space to spread out. They can choose a movie from the well stocked DVD library in reception or a game to play on the in room Nintendo Wii. Wifi was great all over our apartment which should keep even the teenagers happy.

4 shelves of various DVDs
There’s a huge selection of DVDs to choose from

Once you venture out of your apartment you’ll discover why Scarborough is one of the most popular destinations on the North East Coast. Within the Sands complex you’ll find the brilliant Dexters surf school which offers surf, paddle board and kayaking lessons for all ages.

view of scarborough north bay beach with huge waves crashing in to land near a road with a bus driving past
The view from our balcony!

Of course you’re only seconds away from the golden sand of Scarborough’s North beach where kids can play on the sand all day. You can even rent one of the colourful beach huts bordering the sand which all come with deckchairs, a kettle and sink. These are ideal when the tide is in as it pretty much swallows up all of the sand. Kids will love this time of day as you can often watch the huge waves break over the sea wall, drenching unsuspecting passers by.

row of beach hurts all painted a very vibrant colour. There is red, yellow, green, blue and red
Have you ever seen such colourful beach huts?

Scarborough Castle is an interesting place to visit and just a half hour walk from the Sands, from there you can continue on into the town centre where you’ll find heaps of arcades, funicular rides and another beach. If you don’t fancy the walk you can always hop on the bus which stops right outside the complex.

view across to the sea to scarborough castle

Heading out of the Sands complex the other way you’ll also find the glorious Peasholm Park, North Bay Railway, Alpamere waterpark, a sweet mini golf course and the Sealife Centre. Trust me, you wont get bored!

Read my full list of things to do in Scarborough with kids.

Safety protocols at the Sands

Our stay at the Sands felt incredibly safe. Everything was spotlessly clean and sterilised on arrival and there are hand sanitiser stations all over the public areas in the the complex. You need your key fob to access all internal doors and a separate key to open your apartment.

Checking in

Check in was quick and easy with a friendly receptionist who explained everything we needed to know for our stay. Check out was equally simple and they have a key drop available if you’ll be leaving out of hours. Reception is open between 8am and 10pm (or 7pm on Wednesdays and Thursdays). You can check in from 3pm on the day of your arrival although you can use your parking space from midday.

4 comfy chaits around a small round table on a blue carpet in the sands reception area
The reception area is a lovely welcoming space

How to book at stay at this gorgeous Scarborough Accommodation

The best way to book a stay at this self catering accommodation in Scarborough is directly through the Sands website. They will always have the best deals available. If you have any specific enquiries related to your stay you can email them on or give them a call on 01723 364 714 and they’ll be happy to talk through your options.

Can I take dogs to the Sands in Scarborough.

The Sands apartment complex has a few dog friendly apartments. You’ll need to phone to book these and dogs will be charged at an extra £20 per night. Dogs will love a walk along the Cleveland way which goes right through Scarborough or a run on North Bay beach. Just make sure to check which part of the sand they are allowed on, this changes at different times throughout the year.

man walking dog near the sea under the view of scarborough castle

So where is the Sands in Scarborough

The Sands complex is located a stones throw from Scarborough’s North Bay Beach. It’s the quieter part of Scarborough which is ideal if you’re visiting with kids or are after a peaceful break by the sea. It’s also a short taxi ride or 20 minute walk into town if you are after a livelier night out.

The Sands Complex
Kepwick House
Peasholm Gap
YO12 7TN

Scarborough is around 20 minutes drive from some beautiful Seaside towns and villages. Robin Hoods Bay and Filey are popular day trips from Scarborough. If you want to head further out, Whitby is another great place to visit with kids and the delightful towns of Runswick Bay and Staithes are both within an hours drive.

How to get to the Sands self catering apartments

Scarborough is really easy to get to. Just head North on the M1 then the A64 and A641. Then you just follow the signs to “North Bay Attractions”. You may hit a bit of traffic traveling through town but the rest of the journey was fine.

Don’t just take my word for it, you can read plenty more brilliant reviews of the Sands in Scarborough over on Tripadvisor.

beige sofa with yellow cushions infront of a wooden open plan kitchen

A huge thank you to the Sands for hosting our two night self catering stay. We absolutely will be back the next time we are up North!

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