Top Ten Beaches in the World
This list of the Top ten beaches in the world was compiled by Gavin McOwan of the UK's Guardian in 2007. Whilst I am always a little skeptical about the motives of holiday supplements in newspapers, as they are so heavily reliant on advertisers, this list of top 10 beaches in the world, does contain some stunning beaches, many of which are well worth considering if you are researching for your perfect beach holiday location.
I was surprised to see a beach in Spain making the top spot on a list of the worlds best beaches. This is not because Spain does not have great beaches, about a million sun worshipers will testify to that, but rather because when people pick their best or favorite beach, they usually tend to be located on far off exotic locations... but Spain?
Delving a little further, you will see that Las Islas Cies beach is not only a fantastic beach, but also very exotic and I guess the best bit is you don't have to travel to a far off destination to get there!
Read more on Las Islas Cies beach in Galicia, Spain
You wont find any high rise apartment blocks on the beaches at Tayrona National Park, this is because this area located about 30 minutes from the city of Rodadero, in Colombia has got National Park status.
Tayrona Park lies on the Caribbean coast near Santa Marta in Colombia and the beaches are reached by a trail that dips and climbs through the rain forest.
The park has some wonderful wildlife including black howler and titi monkeys, red woodpeckers, iguanas and the rare jaguar. You can rent a hammock for the night and sleep under the stars, sounds like paradise and it is.
With a small, white colonial fort at one end and a whitewashed church sitting up on a hill at the other, this beach located right in the heart of Salvador, the third-largest and oldest city in Brazil is fantastic.
The beach at Porto da Barra can get busy and even sometimes crowded. Young kids jumping off the rocks, people playing probably Brazil's second favorite sport of beach volleyball and of course beach football.
Even when the beach is not busy in the morning, there will always something going on as the fishing port is still used and you will see small fishing boats unloading their catches.
The group of islands in Palawan in the Philippines are sure to remind you of the much more famous beaches in Thailand, except for one thing. Because this area is not on every backpacker's to do list, it is far less touristy and therefore they are far less crowded.
Palawan (island province) is an archipelago of tropical limestone islands that rise high above the turquoise water, underground rivers, rocky coves, virgin rainforest and, of course, the brilliant white sandy beaches.
The Philippines as over 7 thousand islands and only the fraction of the tourists that you get in Thailand, this means that it is relatively simple to hire a fishing boat, and go off to find your very own "Beach". If you would rather be with other people, Honda Bay is one of the most popular and has many small islands including Cannon Island, Bat Island and Starfish Island.
There are many fantastic beaches along the coastline of southern Kenya and northern Tanzania, but the beaches on the island of Zanzibar have to be some of the best. Zanzibar has about 30 beaches and pretty much every single one is picture perfect and one of the best has to be Nungwi beach which is near the northern tip of the island.
Zanzibar, with it's old stone town and small fishing villages, seems to be stuck in a place where time stands still. The white sand falls away under the surface of the water ever so gently creating the wonderful Turquoise coloured calm waters which are home to thousands of exotic marine animals.
For many, Goa represents the worst in hippy hedonism and the excesses of modern travel and for others it is paradise. What can't be denied is that the beaches in Goa are beautiful and one of the best is Arambol beach, backed by the jungle and a freshwater lake nearby.
Whilst it is true that Arambol beach, located in the north of Goa, does have it's share of hippies and expats, it is soo long that you can easily find your own private piece of sand. Carry on round the headland and you will find even more sand, where you can walk for miles without seeing another person.
Mile after mile of wide, white sandy beaches, that slope gently down into the beautiful warm sapphire coloured sea. If that's your idea of the perfect beach, them Whitehaven beach on the Whitsunday Islands in Queensland is for you.
Getting to Whitehaven, is not that simple and sometimes in the year you have to wear a stinger suit to swim in the sea, but that is why finding your own spot on the beach will definitely not be a problem and these are small prices to pay for paradise.
It is highly recommended that you stay longer than 1 day on Whitehaven and the only way to stay near the beach is to camp. You can get a permit from Airlie Beach town on the mainland.
Whitehaven beach also features on the World's Most Beautiful Beaches put together by Tim Clark, a journalist who writes for the Daily Mail newspaper.
Although the the Isle of Purbeck is actually a peninsula, to geth there you have to get on an old chain ferry and you do feel that you have left the mainland.
Thanks to the National Trust, the beach is completely unspoilt with a huge area of sand backed by miles and miles of dunes.
There is a lovely seafood restaurant right on the water as well as the Shell Bay Bar and Restaurant has a great view of the harbour and is the perfect spot to grap a bite to eat and drink.
The white sands and deep blue sea at Sinclair’s Bay can look more like you are in the Caribbean than Cathness, eight miles south of John O’Groats in Scotland.
What the Caribbean does'nt have is a 16th-century castle at each end of the beach as well as some great birdlife that includes plovers, dunlins, porpoises and orca.
One of the highlights is if you arrange to stay overnight right next to the beach in the Ackergill Tower, a 15th-century castle.
How could an island like this (see photo) not have stunning beaches? Well it does and Aroa beach on Aitutaki, which is part of the Cook Islands is one of the most beautiful with everything you ever dreamed of in a beach.
As Gavin McOwan says "It takes forever to get to this coral atoll necklaced by an azure lagoon, but the snorkelling, fishing and scuba-diving make this hidden paradise one of the best beaches in the south Pacific."
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