It is situated approximately 10 miles (16 km) north of Spurn Point and 17 miles south of Hornsea where the B1242 meets the A1033. The town is surrounded by rich agricultural land and yet sits close to the cliffs and the North Sea.
Withernsea lies upon unconsolidated till. This material was deposited by glaciers during the last ice age 18,000 years ago.
The groynes on Withernsea beach ensure wide and relatively steep beaches. The beach material is made up of sand and shingle.
The majority of the Withernsea frontage is provided coastal protection in the form of groynes, concrete seawalls and rock armour.
Sea wall, rock armour and groynes at Withernsea.
At the north and south ends protection is afforded by concrete reventments.
The whole of the defended frontage benefits from a groyne field which traps sand and has formed wide beaches.
Rock armour has also been placed to the south of Withernsea.