If there is one thing everyone should have on their bucket list, it’s a pink sand beach vacation. There are few places on earth with these unique beaches. This scarceness and beauty adds an extra allure that makes them top tourist destinations for families or a romantic beach getaway.
So what causes pink sand? In the case of the Bahamas, it’s tiny oysters named Foraminifera. These tiny organisms grow under the coral reefs and die on the ocean floor. Then, along with bits of corals and shells, they get washed up and get crushed in the sand, giving it a pink hue.
Continue reading to see 15 pink sand beaches to explore.
With its pale pink sand stretching for more than 3 miles, this is considered by many to be the best pink sand beach in the world, according to Bahamas.com. The website boasts that the beach is always cool and bare-foot friendly.
Two beaches in Indonesia have pink sand: Pink Beach in Komodo National Park in East Nusa Tenggara and Tangsi Beach in East Lombok. Lombok is an island next to Bali and Tangsi beach is one of only three pink sand beaches in Asia. Lombokjourney.com recommends Tangsi Beach due to the cliffs and natural beauty surrounding the water.
Crain Beach started as a commercial port in the mid-18th century, and was named by its most recognizable feature: a cargo crane. According to thecrane.com, the Crane Beach Hotel opened in 1887. Since it opened, it has become a favorite for the world’s elite. They come from all over for the powder-soft pink sand and the best swimming on the island.
This small islet is on southwestern side of Crete. The water between the mainland and this island is so shallow you can walk there, making this white and pink sandy beach ideal for for families with small children. Tripadvisor has listed this on its list of world’s best beaches.
Elbow Beach is located in Paget Parish, very close to the city of Hamilton. The beach has a gentle curve resembling an elbow, hence the name. It’s one of the most beautiful pink south shore beaches on Bermuda, according to Bermuda-Attractions.com. The beach has reef barriers keeping the waters relatively calm, making it ideal for swimming and snorkeling.
This strip of peninsula on the island of Formentera is set within an unspoiled beach landscape. With the exception of a small resort, there is little or no building to obstruct the beaches. The beaches are backed by sand dunes and are protected by conservationists. There are wooden walkways for visitors to walk, cycle or jog and injoy local plants, birds and marine life.
Pink sand beaches are rare, so Bermuda must consider itself lucky to have more than one. This is another curved beach, hence the name Horseshoe. The main beach is about quarter of a mile and is flanked by limestone rocks along its boundary line. If you swim offshore toward the rocks you will find the snorkeling outstanding. In 2016, Condé Nast Traveler rated this beach among the top 20 beaches in the world.
Balos is famous for its turquoise waters, wild natural beauty and the beautiful pink sand. The lagoon is located on the northwestern corner of Crete, about 30 miles from the city of Chania. The water is very shallow and warm, ideal for young children and snorkeling. One downside is that its not very big so it gets crowded. A suggestion from West-Crete.com: Go early in the morning to avoid day-trippers.
The beautiful color of Spiaggia Rosas’ beaches ranges from fuchsia to salmon. The beaches owe their color to tiny fragments of coral, granite and shells that are washed ashore and ground by water and wind. This beach is located on Isola Budelli, a small atoll off the northern coast of Sardinia. According to tourists on Tripadvisor.com, the beach is closed due to people stealing the pink sand. You can pass through by boat for some great photos.
Although Pfeiffer Beach is off the beaten path, it is a highly recommended drive. Once you get there, you will be speechless. The manganese, quartz and garnet rocks in the cliffs give the beach a pink, almost purple hue. Californiabeaches.com says that a focal point of the beach is Keyhole Rock, a natural arch where you can photograph the sunset passing through.
St. John can boast more than a dozen of the worlds most beautiful beaches, but the one that is the most highly rated by reviewers is Trunk Bay. The beach has a quarter of a mile of powder sand and crystal clear water, and has become one of the most photographed beaches in the area. While most will call the sand snow white at high noon, it takes on a pale pink hue at sunrise and sunset.
Barbuda is part of a three-island state with Antigua and Redonda in the Caribbean. It is world-renowned for its beaches, which are natural, many miles long and often sprinkled with pink sand. Between Spanish Point and Palmetto Point, you can walk eight miles on crystal pink sand without seeing another beachgoer.
This quite beach is tucked at the base of a cinder cliff that separates the beach from the town of Kaihalulu and isn’t exactly easy to get there. There’s minimal parking and you have to take a a steep trail down to the beach. However once you get there, the crimson pink and red cinders from the beach and the view of whitecaps on the rocks that form a barrier for the beach will prove worth it.
This is the place to unplug and get away from it all. There are no casinos, no cruise ships, chain restaurants or tourist-trap stores. The main attraction is the pink sand and turquoise waters nestled between coral reefs protecting its shore. The motto at Frenchleaveeleuthera.com is: “Once you get here, you will never question why you came.”
Another Bermuda favorite, this secluded small beach is surrounded by cliffs that block out strong coastal winds. The protection leaves the breezes on the pink sands gentle and calm. Bermuda-Attractions.com reports that the rocks along with the coral reefs keep the water calm inside the cove making it ideal for swimming and snorkeling. See the best island beaches for swimming and snorkeling here.