It is no coincidence that beaches are often referred to as little pieces of paradise and are considered by many to be their happiest place. Between the warm sun shining on your skin, soft white sand under your feet, and breaks in crystal blue water, you can’t help but feel at peace.
Plus, some of these beaches also add diving or snorkeling experiences or feature fun open-air bars that take their stunning beaches to the next level.
Seagrass Bay, Laucala Island, Fiji
This private island is a 7.5-square-mile paradise covered in a tropical jungle. Not only does it make for stunning guided walking tours and horseback rides, but it’s home to some of the archipelago’s rarest birds and animals.
This is separate from its pristine beaches and incredible marine life.
Whitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Islands, Australia
There is a reason the name almost sounds like white “heaven.” This is a great shore for typical Australian water activities such as surfing and diving.
The sand takes its name from being made of 98-percent silica, making it some of the whitest on earth. Plus, it doesn’t get hot in the sun.
Shoal Bay, Antigua
The sky blends with the water at this beautiful beach. The sand almost looks like icing-sugar sand. It extends 3 kilometers by crystal-clear Caribbean water. The water features a coral reef that offers great snorkeling or diving excursions.
The stretch is full of bars, open-air restaurants, and yachts, so it’s perfect for partying and relaxing at the same time.
Ora Beach, Indonesia
This beach has the world’s second-longest coastline. It has not one, but a few beautiful beaches, one of the most popular being Ora, in the north.
It is known as Indonesia’s Little Maldives thanks to white sandy beaches and turquoise water. It sits on several tectonic plates, which means that the landscape around varies scenically from rainforests to mountains.
Bathsheba Beach, Barbados
There is a reason this area is a hot spot for both photographers and surfers. It is one of the few beaches that remains wild and untouched. It makes some of the best waves for surfers who name it the “Soup Bowl,” for when the waves crash into the white sand and huge boulders to create a stunning scene.
Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles
This is a popular honeymoon spot that draws tourists from around the world for its secluded, eye-catching beaches and diving opportunities.
It is located in the middle of the Indian Ocean, north of Madagascar and east of Zanzibar.
Pink Sands Beach, Harbor Island, Bahamas
This beach is a perfect fit for all from couples to families with both casinos and family-friendly hotels. What’s really fascinating here is the Pink Sands Beach, with almost five kilometers of pink—actually pink—sands.
It gets this color from microscopic shelled animals with a reddish-pink shell called foraminifera, which mix into the sand.
Hidden Beach, Islas Marietas, Mexico
It’s a little harder to get to this literally hidden beach as it’s located right inside a cave with a massive hole facing the sky. You need to either take a boat here then swim or kayak through a tunnel.
Many believe that the unique form of this beach was caused by the Mexican government testing bombs in the 1900s.
Glass Beach, California
If you’re looking for a truly unique beach, this one is made from years of dumped litter, with a mesmerizing result. Basically, they used to throw glass, appliances, and even cars in the water from 1906 to 1967.
Then a cleanup program removed all the metal so the waves broke down the remaining glass and pottery. They then washed up as jewel-like stones.
Fakarava, French Polynesia
This is one of the best snorkeling locations in the world, thanks to its calm and always warm waters. Many rare fish find refuge in this sea, but beware of the sharks that swim close to the shore.
The beach gained popularity when it served as the inspiration for Matisse’s paintings. The artist spent three months nearby in 1930 and was fascinated by the lagoons’ blues.
Sunset Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
This is the perfect location for surfing all year round, but especially in the winter with its wave surfing. In fact, this is home to the Vans Triple Crown.
After a long day of swimming in calm water, make sure you stay for the sunset for which the beach is really famous! That really seals the deal for visitors.
Baia Dos Porcos, Fernando de Noronha, Brazil
If you want a little more adventure with your beach experience, hike up to this beach to witness firsthand its incredible rock formations.
This site is so unique that it has come to be recognized as a world heritage site UNESCO.
Pig Beach, Exumas, Bahamas
What’s more unique then swimming with friendly pigs in clear water? This is the only place in the world where you can do that.
There are many legends about how the pigs got there, such as a tale about a shipwreck to one about hungry pirates who left them off and never came back.
Starfish Beach, Panama
From the second you get on the boat taxis, you feel a bit like a local. Once you arrive at the town hub of Bocas on Isla Colón, you won’t find more than 10 inhabited islands.
This beach is protected for its large number of staggering starfishes.
Marathonisi, Zakynthos, Greece
Calling all turtle lovers! This beach is actually better known as Turtle Island. Amidst the white sand, you’ll find a vital nesting spot for endangered loggerhead sea turtles. Visitors have to stay within five meters of the water to not disturb them.
Don’t worry, though: tourists can still get their swim fix in the surrounding sea caves by snorkelling or on a boat.
Banana Beach, Koh Hey (Coral) Island, Thailand
This is a great beach to get away from the crowds and immerse yourself in nature. Banana Beach has a backdrop of green jungles with a forefront of crystal blue water, making a stunning contrast.
Plus, it’s all a part of a national park and marine preservation area. It also has many water activities like banana boat rides, snorkeling kayaking, and parasailing.
Lucky Bay, Australia
Like many beaches on this list, this one has beautiful water and sand, but it’s unique for the presence of kangaroos that just hop around the shore. Plus, if you’re really lucky, you might even get a sighting of the migrating whales off the coast.
Flamenco Beach, Puerto Rico
You can get the perfect tropical resort-like experience this U-shaped cove beach with its warm blue water, palm trees, and white sand. The island is still largely undeveloped.
The US military used to use the island as a gunnery range and a rusting Sherman tank still remains in the middle of the sand.
Bora Bora, French Polynesia
You can’t have a list of beautiful beaches and not include Bora Bora, with its sugar sand, palms, breeze, and warm blue sea. It’s the picture-perfect beach basically. It’s actually so calm it’s perfect for meditation, too.
Praia Do Sancho, Brazil
This is a great island for adventure: not only is it a volcanic island, but it’s been voted one of the world’s best beaches. Its adventurous feel comes from how hard it is to get to. You have to hike and kneel down narrow rock tunnels, then go down a steep ladder. But the view once you get there is all worth it!