When it’s bitterly cold outside, nothing compares to a warm beach in a sunny destination somewhere halfway around the world. Of course, you might find yourself asking, what beaches, in particular, are worth travelling halfway across the world for? Well, there are more than a few island getaways. We’ve highlighted beaches from a selection of our island destinations across the globe. These incredible locales capture everything you want in a beach: powdery sand, warm waters, gorgeous surroundings, and the feeling that you’ve escaped to your own version of paradise.
If you’re dreading the coming of winter, pay careful attention and add these sunny getaways to your travel plans for the near future.
Balangan Beach, Bali
A little less crowed than Nusa Dua, which sits on the east side of the Uluwatu Peninsula, Balangan Beach is one of the most secluded beaches on the popular island of Bali and certainly one of the most beautiful. It lies on the northeastern edge of the peninsula and is easily accessible if you’re staying in Nusa Dua or anywhere on the peninsula. Facing west, it has views of the Indian Ocean and is especially stunning at sunset, when the water and sand burns a bright orange or red. It’s also home to some of the biggest waves on Bali, so surfers from all around the world come here to ride the breaks. White-stone hills sit right off the beach, meaning that you’ll have gorgeous landscape at your back, and the glimmering waters of the Indian Ocean before you. What more can you want in a beach while on a trip to Indonesia?
Matira Beach, Bora Bora
Matira Beach is the most popular public beach on the island of Bora Bora, and for good reason. Located on the southeastern point of the island, this stretch of beach has fine white sand and lush greenery as a backdrop. The water is a soft blue and there are several popular resorts nearby, including the Le Moana Intercontinental Bora Bora. From Matira Point, the beach curves inward towards the northwest, offering you waters that are protected from the stronger currents of the ocean, which makes for safe swimming. Many people claim Matira Beach is the most beautiful public beach on the planet, so you know you’re in for something special when you visit on a Tahiti vacation.
Horseshoe Bay, Fiji
This beach is about as exclusive as they get. Located on Matangi Island, which is only accessible if you’re staying at Matangi Private Island Resort, the bay is a picturesque half-moon crescent that was formed when an extinct volcano receded into the ocean. If you have a yacht, you may be able to anchor off the island and go for a swim in the lagoon, but for everyone else, being a guest at Matangi Private Island Resort is the only way to enjoy its idylls. That means seclusion, privacy, and an unblemished stretch of beach all to yourself on your Fiji vacation.
Punalu’u Beach, Hawaii
This black-sand beach is stunning simply to look at. Located on the big island of Hawaii, Punalu’u Beach has jet black sand that is remarkable and quite rare across the world. Green sea turtles lay their eggs here, so you’ll have a chance to see baby turtles if you visit, although be sure to keep your distance if you do. Nearby Ninole Cove is great for snorkelling, while the underwater springs in the bay create different temperatures in the water that make for a fascinating swimming experience, where the waters can be warm one second and cool the next. There are good camping and picnicking sites nearby, so if you’re an outdoors type, you’re sure to love Punalu’u Beach and its surroundings. Regardless of whether you camp nearby, the stark sight of the beach itself is worth a trip.
We could’ve picked many of the Greek Islands, but there’s something special about Crete, which doesn’t get as much attention as the other islands despite having an unbeatable cultural atmosphere and golden landscape. After savouring all the olives and feta cheese and fresh seafood that you could hope for in one of Crete’s towns or cities, head to Plakias or Agia Galini and take a boat to Preveli Beach, which lies beyond a mountain and a palm forest on the southern coast. It’s the kind of sandy outcrop that’s picture perfect on your Greece vacation. When you stand on the beach facing the ocean, white cliffs sit to your right, a palm forest lies to your back, and nothing but white sand and the gentle blue waters of the lagoon stretch out before you. The beach can grow busy in the summer, but the crowds are worth braving to experience this wonderful spot on island getaways.
Muri Beach, Rarotonga
Muri Beach looks like what you’d expect a pristine beach in the Cook Islands to look like. Located in the southeastern corner of Rarotonga, Muri Beach is the most accessible and most popular beach in the Cooks. It’s easy to get to because most everywhere on Rarotonga is easily accessible by following the circuit road that circumnavigates the island. You’ll find some resorts nearby and there’ll be other travellers and locals enjoying the beach alongside you, but unlike many other popular tropical islands, the Cooks are never crowded, so even the most popular beach in the entire nation is relatively secluded compared to other beach highlights around the globe. Take advantage of the lack of crowds on island getaways and enjoy the long stretches of this lovely beach.
Anse Source d’Argent, Seychelles
The Seychelles is never given its proper due when talking about island getaways around the globe. But the country is home to one of the most overwhelmingly beautiful beaches in the world, Anse Source d’Argent, which has served as a backdrop for several popular movies like Robert Zemeckis’s Cast Away. Located on the southwestern coast of La Digue in Seychelles, Anse Source d’Argent has bleached sand, scattered palm trees, and impossibly smooth rocks giving way to clear waters. The water is shallow and protected by a reef, so it makes for good swimming, and the reef is a good snorkelling spot. There are also nearby restaurants and toilets and the trees and rocks provide natural shade, so it’s an ideal beach to hunker down on for the day. It costs 115 rupees to access the beach, but the price is easily worth it to experience such a breathtaking spot.
These beaches are some of the many gorgeous sandy spots that you can escape to on island getaways. There are few things more enjoyable than lying on the beach in a tropical destination and letting the sun warm your skin, especially when you know what kind of wintery weather you’re escaping back home. So why don’t you treat yourself and head on a beach escape today?
Get the latest travel trends & hear about the best deals on vacations around the world.
If you’re a Globetrotter, these are the newsletters for you!