If the idea of a memorable vacation is synonymous with catching sunrays, relaxing on powdery sand, swimming among all kinds of colorful fish, and enjoying a nice cool breeze, then you are dreaming of being on one of the following beaches, listed in no particular order.
Iceland has several black sand beaches but Reynisfjara is one of the coolest and most impressive. Its iconic cliff of regular basalt columns resembling a rocky step pyramid, called Hálsanef, is stunning. Out in the sea are the spectacularly shaped basalt sea stacks Reynisdrangar.
The length of this gorgeous beach is so spectacular, it was named after it. Other amazing features include its rugged stretch of sand and, of course, the Maheno shipwreck. This is a popular swimming spot, called Champagne Pools.
This is a wondrous place well-known for its historical sights. Oludeniz is also a quiet place; you won’t find any crazy nightclubs or extravagant shows. If you are looking for an adventurous holiday, try paragliding from Babadag Mountain.
This beach is home to some of the most incredible colored sand in the world – purple sand. Visitors say that the best time to see it is after rainfall. The purple sand comes from manganese garnet in the hills. It is eroded and washed down the creek to the beach, according to Discover Central California.
This is not a very popular travel destination. The coastal town is mostly known for its space station, which is used for research programs such as weather studies and for telecommunications. The beach, however, is worth a day trip. It’s pretty rare to see a green-colored beach.
The Wavine Cyrique Beach is perhaps among the most famous attractions in the mountainous Caribbean island nation because of the huge waterfall crashing on the beach. Getting to the beach requires a strenuous hike down a steep cliff. It’s easy until then – you walk for about 10 minutes through the jungle to the cliff’s edge.
Spanish for “broken down car,” Carro Quebrado is nearly empty except for red cliffs, a tiny bar, and the vast stretch of ocean. Pristine white sand and azure blue water awaits the lucky few who can find and access the stretch of desert beach known as Carro Quebrado.
This beautiful little beach, nestled between rocky shores and mountains, is located in Acadia National Park. The beach is “comprised of unique sand of shell fragments that were created by thousands of years of pounding surf,” barharbormagic.com says. Sand Beach is a popular spot in the summer despite chilly water temperatures. One of the best ways to see the coastline is from the water. Consider kayaking Acadia for the most stunning views.
Only accessible by boat or helicopter, Whitehaven Beach is set on the largest of the 74 Whitsunday Islands. The entire island is a natural preserve, featuring some of the purest sand on earth, crystal clear waters and access to the Great Barrier Reef. There are no restaurants, bars or hotels.
It’s often referred to as the Pink Sand Island. Tikehau is considered to be one of the most beautiful isles in French Polynesia. The bright-blue water, stunning shores, fresh air, friendly people, and their homes awash with gardens, lure thousands of tourists each year. Snorkeling here is breathtaking as fish seem to outnumber people one-billion-to one.
Many of the pole fishermen you see are now just being tourist props. They still make for gorgeous photos, though. But Unawatuna is very popular even without them. Visitors love the palm-lined beaches, clean waters and a large selection of guesthouses and restaurants.
An Bang Beach is the perfect year-round getaway. The island views are incredible and there are numerous restaurants and bars. The beach is also among the few remaining stretches of shore that remains mostly untouched by development.
If you love collecting shells, you’re going to love Bowman’s Beach. It’s a private and secluded, with barbecue grills making it perfect for a family picnic. Enjoy the spectacular view of the ocean and for some adventure, take out on a canoe and kayak.
This magical black-sand beach, only about an hour away from Auckland, is well-known among surfers, especially in the summer. But catching big waves isn’t the only fun activity here – explore the walks through native forest in the nearby hills.
The gorgeous valley is one of the most incredible places on the Big Island. It was once home to Hawaiian royalty who oversaw the cultivation of taro root in the valley's fertile earth. Many still consider the place sacred. The trifocal beauty is 1 mile across and over 5 miles deep. It is surrounded by cliffs up to 2,000 feet high.
It has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1984. It is also the world’s first freshwater national park. The powder-fine sand surrounded by mountains, dotted with nearby islands is awe-inspiring. Relax on a hammock, go kayaking, enjoy sailing, and try snorkeling – Cape Mac will enchant you.
It may sound unbelievable but it’s true – a what appears to be an endless number of tiny white shells have formed the remarkable Shell Beach. It stretches for just over 37 miles. Some deposits are as much as 33 feet deep.
Some refer to it as the hidden paradise of Central Maliku. Getting there is a bit of a task, but it’s worth every effort you put into achieving it. It takes a flight and a ferry ride. This gorgeous area, which is also called the Little Maldives of Indonesia, is a popular destination with newlyweds.
One of the most popular of the BVIs is the Virgin Gorda, a land mass whose shape resembles that of a large reclining woman, and a place where the laid-back pace will wash all your worries away. Climbing through the cracks and caves is a marvelous experience. Reach Devil's Bay for shallow clear waters that are ideal for snorkeling.
The stunning beach is located in the archipelago of Fernando de Noronha. It is about an hour from natal if you fly there. A total of 21 tiny islands comprise a marine park where you go if what you want to see are magical beaches and dive spots because they can see whales, reef sharks, and clownfish.
This is a gorgeous resort with several beaches right next to each other. The most popular attractions are the historic Cobb and harbor. The dramatic blue cliffs in the background contain fossilized evidence of life millions of years ago.
Also known as Kaihalulu Beach, red sand beach offers some of the most incredible scenery. It’s a hidden cove with a rugged coastline and red lava cliffs. You have to hike to get there, but once you do, visitors say it’s totally worth it.
Smuggler’s Cove is also known as Navagio Beach. It is located on the Greek Islands and is only accessible by boat. Try taking a boat cruise or a speedboat to Smuggler’s Cove. Enjoy the beautiful scenery, the limestone cliffs, the crystal blue water and white sand. Tip: Try BASE jumping for fun.
The stunning beach is more commonly known as, you guessed it, the Green Sand Beach. The colored sand was the result of a silicate deposit of lava, which stays deposited there because it’s much heavier than the other components of the lava.
If you are planning a trip to Thailand, visit the beach before the summer. It will be closed to tourists for the season – the island’s low season anyway – due to the damage the marine environment has sustained over the years. Authorities are giving the coral reef time to recover.
A holiday there is a tropical vacation of a lifetime. This is Bora Bora’s most popular public shore, and the only public beach on the main island. The gorgeous white sand beach has is a fun atmosphere and offers natural shade from palm trees, safe swimming in warm and shallow water and easy snorkeling.
It still remains a secret to some people. The beach sits in the shadow of the famous Tulum Mayan ruins. Its gorgeous palm trees, pristine white sand and clear turquoise water creates the paradise beach vacation.
The name comes from the smooth colorful glass pieces on the pebbly beach. The site was once a trash dump so broken bottles from garbage cans of local residents are now little treasures to be found, according to California Beaches. It is illegal to remove any glass from there.
This is the largest and most famous beach in Lopar. It’s called Rajska, which means paradise. The shore is about 1.3 miles long. It has been awarded "Blue Flag" for the quality of water, preservation of natural surroundings, according to Rab Visit.
Colorful and spectacular are the most common words used to describe the stunning Porto Ferro Beach. It is covered by orange sand, volcanic deposits and a mixture of shells. People visit because of its crystal clear waters and colored sand.
This is a small and sandy beach, located in the middle of the Algarve coast, that attracts people with its turquoise waters and orange limestone that makes up the iconic cliffs and rock formations. Getting there takes a off-road driving and hiking.
If you want to explore the Caribbean Sea, head to the absolutely serene, and famous, Trunk Bay. But go early in the morning because it gets really busy later. Try the Underwater Trail, which is a snorkeling path of coral and fish with underwater signs. Boat tours, scuba diving and snorkeling are by far the most popular activities for tourists.
This is a stunning, secluded, and isolated beach. You can only access this beach by swimming to it, either from Kalalau Beach or an offshore boat. Visitors enjoy views of the Honopu arch, large waterfalls, and gorgeous sea cliffs.
Ipanema Beach is the iconic sandy spot that lends beach-wear trends to the rest of the world. Ipanema is well known for wild surf, fantastic sunsets, and posts that divide it up into cultural sections. See the surrounding area on a bike tour or take a cable car up Pao de Acucar.
Camps Bay is among the most popular tourist destinations in Cape Town. Its location on the foot of the Twelve Apostles mountain range and right next to the famous Table Mountain makes a trip there ever more tempting.
The crystal-clear blue waters at Darkwood Beach make for great snorkeling. The gentle cool breeze makes it perfect for relaxation and solitude. This is a gorgeous beach with a restaurant and floating obstacle course. The best time to go is during the week because it gets very crowded with cruise passengers on the weekends.
Being there is a dream come true, especially if you are a photographer. The pure white sand and unique rock formations have been featured in many movies and TV shows. You can see fish swimming around without snorkeling, which you don’t need to do in order to enjoy marine life, due to the shallow waters.
Crane Beach was originally a harbor. There was a crane at the top of the cliff which was used for loading and unloading ships, hence the name. The towering cliffs on each end and the coral reef in the ocean make for stunning views. The warm and lively waves make Crane Beach one of the best spots for boogie boarding.
There is probably not a single beach in Ibiza that is not gorgeous, but Las Salinas, which is the southernmost tip of the island, is certainly among the best. It’s only about 10 minutes away from Ibiza Town. Also, like most places in Ibiza, the beach is not quiet.
Rainbow Beach gets its name from its rainbow colored sand dunes that overlook a gorgeous white sand beach. While you are there make sure you visit Great Sandy National Park for some outdoor adventures.
The expansive white sand beach, one of the longest in Galapagos at 1.2 miles, attracts many napping sea lions, and tourists, according to Galapagos Conservancy. There is no inland trail and visitors are required to stay on the beach. Three species of Darwin’s finches and Española Mockingbirds may be seen there.
This beach is one of the most famous and stunningly beautiful ones on the entire island. It’s the widest and is most well-known for its clear and soft white sand. Every year around Easter people camp out on the beach. It is also known for protecting turtle nests.