Nature is capable of creating some truly beautiful things, and these are some of the unique beaches in the world. It’s not just about building sandcastles, working on your suntan or wading in the ocean in these places. Many of them could easily lay claim to the most beautiful beach in the world! Which ones of them are on your bucket list?
1. Jokulsarlon Beach, Iceland
Jokulsarlon is a huge glacial lake in the Vatnajökull National Park in Iceland, and it is home to one of the most bizarre beaches you’ll ever see. Due to the continuous melting of the nearby glaciers, it is constantly increasing in size. Today, it is four times the size it was in the 1970s! With a constant supply of icebergs floating in the water, the geographical features that form here are breathtaking. Most spectacular is the Diamond Beach, which consists of fine particles of black volcanic rock. Here, pieces of crystallized ice are washed ashore from the lake, and at certain times of day when the light is right, you’ll feel like you’ve been transported to an entirely different world.
2. Zlatni Rat Beach, Croatia
Also known as the Golden Cape, Zlatni Rat Beach is one of the best you can visit in the Mediterranean. Amazingly, each time you go it’ll always be slightly different. That’s because the land is subjected to strong ocean currents that are continually reshaping it. Most of the land is covered with white pebbles, but in the center there’s a pine grove concealing the remains of a Roman villa and it’s still operating swimming pool. The far end of the beach which points south is where the most changes occur. It usually curls in an easterly direction but during certain winds in the summer it’ll completely shift to the west.
3. Anse Source D’Argent, Seychelles
Often voted the most beautiful beach in the world and easily one of the most photographed, Anse Source D’Argent is truly an otherworldly paradise. Surrounded by emerald water and perfectly white sand, the thing that makes this place truly unique is the presence of huge granite boulders along the shoreline. They’ve been smoothed by waves and sand in the wind and they look simply magical. Pictures don’t do this place justice as they look just like a painting. Add to this the rich biodiversity in the water with large numbers of fish and turtles, it’s virtually guaranteed that you’ll never want to leave.
4. Benagil Sea Cave Beach, Portugal
If you’ve been searching for somewhere with crystal clear water, perfect sand and isolation from the rest of the world, then Benagil Sea Cave Beach in Portugal is ideal. Thanks to the soft rock formations in the area, tidal forces have carved incredible structures with arches and a giant skylight with a beach nestled inside. It almost looks as if Neptune himself created this idyllic getaway and it provides the perfect relaxing retreat. When the sun shines in it illuminates the amber hues and the layered walls. The thing that makes it special is that you can’t simply walk there. The only way to access it is through one of the arches in the sea, which means you need a kayak or a boat. On any given day, there’s never too many people who makes the trip.
5. Whitehaven Beach, Australia
If you’re looking for crystal white sands and turquoise sea then there’s simply no better place in the world than Whitehaven Beach. The sand here is especially spectacular because of its extremely high silica content. This is why its properties are far different from what you might expect! For example, the beach doesn’t absorb heat, so no matter how hot the day is you’ll still be able to walk around barefoot! The sand is also so fine that it has a habit of getting everywhere and can cause problems for electronics. It’s even rumored that the sand is such good quality, it was actually used by NASA to produce the glass for the Hubble Space Telescope in the 1970s. To preserve the beach, rules are in place such as no dogs and smoking, and you have to take all your trash home with you.
6. The Bomb Blast Beach, Mexico
Most beaches were formed over thousands of years by the action of waves lashing against the coast. But there’s one in Mexico created much more recently, and rather being a product of nature, this one has its roots in human activity. Located in Puerto Vallarta, Playa de Amor (or Love Beach) has become increasingly popular over the last few years thanks to its stunning vistas and IG-worthy views.
The hidden beach lies within a strange opening in the ground. If it looks unnatural to you, the islands used to be a testing ground for the Mexican military, and this is a crater formed by a bomb detonation. The only way to access the beach is by a short swim through a tunnel. A designated nature reserve, a permit is required to travel to the island and the numbers granted each year are strictly limited. If you’re lucky enough to get one, this is guaranteed to be an experience that you’ll never forget!
7. Hot Water Beach, New Zealand
There’s far more to New Zealand than the mountains and forests! Hot Water Beach is one of the most popular tourist destinations just over a hundred miles from Auckland. The country is full of hot spots and geothermal vents, which creates the unique environment here. Two hours either side of low tide, visitors can dig into the sand and release hot water from the ground to create their own hot springs. Often, groups of people will work together to create huge hot tubs in the sand! While you may not immediately think of going to a beach on a cold or rainy day, this place is certainly an exception.