Homeowners wanting to live by the sea must pay a premium, according to an index published by Frank Knight.
The Waterfront Index shows prices for prime coastal properties are an average of 71% higher than similar properties located a mile inland.
Croyde in north Devon has been the best performing coastal market over this time, outperforming annual prices in the region by an average of 4.1%. Prices in Croyde have increased by 432% over the last two decades, compared to 310% across its three nearest local authorities.
Other prime markets including Rock, Salcombe, Padstow and Falmouth feature in the hotspots identified in the research, outperforming local regions by at least 2% annually.
The research collates Land Registry data stretching back to 1995, calculating the annual price performance of individual coastal markets relative to the average price increase across the three counties.
Towns and cities along the Devon, Dorset and Cornwall coast have surpassed the wider property market over the last two decades in terms of price growth, according to the study.