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A sand and shingle beach

A beach is a landform along the coast of an ocean or sea, or the edge of a lake or river. It usually consists of loose particles, which are often composed of rock, such as sand, gravel, shingle, pebbles, or cobblestones. The particles comprising a beach are occasionally biological in origin, such as mollusc shells or coralline algae.

Some beaches have man-made infrastructure, such as lifeguard posts, changing rooms, and showers. They may also have hospitality venues (such as resorts, camps, hotels, and restaurants) nearby. Wild beaches, also known as undeveloped or undiscovered beaches, are not developed in this manner. Wild beaches can be valued for their untouched beauty and preserved nature.

Beaches typically occur in areas along the coast where wave or current action deposits and reworks sediments.


Beach sections
Intro  Overview  Beaches and recreation  Beach formation  Beach erosion and accretion  Beach access design  Longest beaches  Beach wildlife  See also  References  Further reading  External links  

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