Elia Beach in Mykonos, Greece

7 Awesome Beaches Around the World

About this time every year, when the very last of the leaves have fallen off the trees, and a gray gloom hangs over the sky more days than not, I get the itch to head to the beach. (My pasty white complexion looking back at me in the mirror each morning greatly intensifies this itch.)

If you’ve also got a case of the winter blues, this list of some of my favorite beaches around the world is sure to warm you up. I’ve listed some popular beaches, as well as some lesser-known ones, so it will also provide you with some fresh inspiration for your next beach holiday.

1. Ras Mohammed National Park, Sharm el-Shiekh, Egypt

 

When you think of Egypt, you probably think “desert” more than “beach.” To be sure, it is the stark contrast between the parched, desert terrain of the Sinai peninsula and the crystalline, blue waters of the Red Sea that place the stretch of coastline in and around Sharm el-Shiekh, Egypt among the world’s best beaches. In particular, I recommend you focus your Sharm el-Shiekh holidays on the private beaches of Ras Mohammed National Park, which are often completely empty of tourists.

2. Koh Kradan Island, Thailand

 

I haven’t listed a particular beach for Koh Kradan, an isolated island in the middle of the Andaman Sea off Thailand’s Trang province, because the whole coast of the island is incredible. When my sister and I visited this past October, the island was quite literally ours, a handful of local Thai families notwithstanding. But Koh Kradan, which I’ve speculated might be Thailand’s best island,  is slated to undergo major development in the next several years, so hurry up and get there!

3. Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

 

It’s far from a secret that Rio de Janeiro has some of the world’s best beaches — not to mention, some of the world’s sexiest sunbathers. And while it’s difficult to find anything resembling peace or quiet on busy Ipanema Beach, it’s still possible to get some great R&R amid the festiveness. Personally, I used Ipanema Beach as a recharge zone after a two-month trip in South America, and spent nearly a week basking in the sun, sipping on freshly-made caipirinhas.

4. Elia Beach, Mykonos, Greece

 

I traveled to the Greek island of Mykonos in September 2011, at the end of its annual tourist season. Although the ferry from Athens was packed to the gills, I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to find serenity and solitude, simply by walking a few hundred meters up or down the coast from a particular, crowded beach. If you’ve got a free afternoon and about 5 euro, take a boat to pristine Elia Beach, home to electric blue waters, soft, sandy shores and — I warn you — lots of nude sunbathers.

5. Palolem Beach, Goa, India

 

Goa, India’s coastal gem kissed with a Portuguese-colonial influence, has long been a top destination for people looking for the world’s best beaches. Although Goa’s popularity among Western holiday makers has lead to overdevelopment of its northern coast, the southern Goa beach of Palolem, named for the lush forest of palm trees that sways behind it, still provides for a delightful, relaxing experience. Sunbathing aside, I loved strolling along the entire length of the horseshoe-shaped beach under the starry, night sky.

6. Costa Verde, Lima, Perú

 

The Spanish phrase “Costa verde” translates to “green coast,” and while the waters of Perú’s Costa Verde are indeed green, the coast itself, which is lined with smooth, black rocks, is what steals the show. Likewise, the dramatic cliffs that rise up from the beach and extend for miles in either direct add to the atmosphere of this awesome, lesser-known beach. Another aspect of Costa Verde that makes me consider it one of the best beaches in the world is that it’s just 15 minutes by foot from Lima’s cosmopolitan Miraflores district.

7. Tallow Beach, Byron Bay, Australia

 

Bohemian Byron Bay is one of the most beloved spots along Australia’s coast, and Tallow Beach is a great illustration of why. Miles upon miles of snowy, white sand with blue-green waves breaking over it, backed by an emerald green rainforest and covered by perfect blue skies as far as the eye can see make for an incredible beach experience. Get a great aerial view of Tallow Beach by climbing up to the Cape Byron lighthouse, the easternmost point of the Australian mainland or, if you’re really adventurous, by hang gliding!

 

About The Author

is the author of 670 posts on Leave Your Daily Hell.

Robert founded Leave Your Daily Hell in 2010 so that other travelers would have an entertaining, reliable source of information, advice and inspiration at their fingertips. Want to travel more often? Subscribe to email updates today!

  • http://www.facebook.com/alinaelenapopescu Alina Popescu

    Whenever I think of dream beaches, I think of Turkey and Oludeniz. That was the perfect mix for me – the beaches, large and noisy or tiny and secluded, the adrenalin – paragliding, crazy jeep rides up the mountain, and Turkish food, one of my greatest culinary loves :D Then again I haven’t been to Brasil or Thailand so my opinion might change later on. But I’d take Turkey over Greece every time.

  • https://plus.google.com/116480057469316097585?rel=author Robert Schrader

    You are making me regret canceling my trip to Turkey last year! So far, I’ve only seen Istanbul, and I can’t help but feel like I’m missing out! Maybe when I come to Romania, you can show me the Turkish beaches you’re talking about?

  • http://twitter.com/L_e_a_h Leah Travels

    I’m not really a beach kind of girl, but I think I could spend some time on any of these, especially if I had you reapplying my sunscreen. :-)

  • https://plus.google.com/116480057469316097585?rel=author Robert Schrader

    Why are you not a beach kind of girl? (Besides the fact that I have yet to slather sunscreen on your body while you’re lying on a beach)

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  • http://adventure-backpacking.com/ Traveller Sam

    You’ve listed some great beaches! no doubt about it!

    Definitely check out the filipino beaches.. They have something very special over there… And most of the time you have them all to yourself :)

    In fact most is true for Asia.. THE best beach I’ve EVER seen is “7km beach” in Koh Rong, Cambodia

    7km of absolutely pristine, squeaky, white, footprint-less sand!

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