1. Turks & Caicos – Grace Bay
Grace Bay Beach, in Turks and Caicos makes its fair share of “best beaches” list. The protective and colorful barrier reef, which sits one mile off the shore, keeping the ocean swells at bay, makes the beach “one of the most ideal places to soak in warm Atlantic waters. Swimmers enjoy endless sands without the annoyance of rocks, seaweed or pollution,” judges say. Those looking for an underwater adventure can take the short boat ride to the barrier reef just minutes away. With sunny skies roughly 319 days a year, this island is good year round. Best of all with the likes of Grace Bay Club, The Palms and The Gansevoort nearby and two FBOs at nearby Providenciales International Airport, getting there is easy. However, the island’s low density of hotels means the beach never gets too crowded.
2. Australia – Whitehaven Beach
Whitehaven Beach is composed of 98% silica, and the sand here is some of the whitest on Earth. But the baby-powder-like sand isn’t all that makes every visit to this piece of paradise one to remember. You can only access this four miles of coastline along the warm, clear waters of the Coral Sea by helicopter, seaplane or yacht to experience this spectacular island. “Seeing all of that untouched natural beauty from above will make you believe in a tropical utopia with glowing sands and crystalline beaches,” say the judges. Situated on Queensland’s Whitsunday Islands with an always comforting 80°F temperature, “this stretch of sand backed by tree-covered mountains is a heaven on earth which one must see to believe.” Best of all, its hard to get to, so you won’t find any crowds.
3. Seychelles – Anse Lazio
Anse Lazio in Seychelles places each visitor “into their own tropical paradise with soft, golden sand and sunlit atmosphere. Crystal clear water and lush coconut palms backed by granite boulders create a setting that feels more like a dream than real life.” Anse Lazio is recognized as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, “known for its picturesque views and vivid colors. The saturated waters wrap each swimmer in a teal dream while the dark green palms frame the golden sunset. The magnificent stretch of coastline offers a tropical oasis for every traveler whether they prefer vigorous activities or serene environments.” Waters at an average 80°F draw visitors in for days spent snorkeling and swimming while the warm 82°F weather presents the perfect opportunity for exploration, activities, or a “rest on pillow-like sands with a mimosa in hand.”
Anse Lazio is located on the northwest coast of Praslin Island. Arrive at Seychelles International Airport and charter a boat, catch a speed or fly 15 minutes Mahe to Praslin. The runway is 4,610 feet. You will have your toes in the sand and sun on your shoulders at Anse Lazio before you know it. Raffles Praslin is about two miles away with villas ranging from 1,345-2,960 sq. ft.
4. The Bahamas – Pink Sands Beach
Pink Sands Beach has “a fairytale-like name, and you’ll understand why when you set foot on the beautifully colored sands.” The nearly three miles of “stunning coastline, saturated in golden sun and pink plush ground, will plant itself in your memory forever.” Harbour Island in the Bahamas is home to “inviting stretches of coastline and mellow waters protected by an offshore coral reef. This portion of the island is an especially dreamy part, known for its pale pink sand made from the bright red and pink shells of the microscopic Foraminifera insects.” The color contrasts and meshes with the turquoise waterline, creating “sunrise and sunset colors that are unlike anything else you’ll see in your lifetime.”
Fly into North Eleuthera (ELH) airport with its 6,019 ft. runway and then a water taxi to Harbour Island.
5. Greece – Navagio Beach
Navagio Beach in Greece will “dazzle your tropical dreams into reality as blue and white beauty immesh to create a shipwrecked oasis.” You will find clear, crystal blue waters and fine gravel sand. The remoteness of the island only adds to the spectacular and unique atmosphere of Navagio on Zakynthos Island. “The baby blue waters and towering golden cliffs absolutely enchant travelers with its exotic features and atmosphere.” The shipwrecked Freightliner MV Panagiotis, washed on the gravel beach, only adds to the uniqueness. The 80°F weather and 82°F water in the summer provides a perfect climate to relax. “Ethereal views capture your attention as you travel to the beach by sea, slowly becoming overawed by the beauty of this small island,” say the judges. Fly into the Zakynthos International Airport then rent a car or hire a personal driver on a quad or motorbike for direct access to Navagio, or even better, anchor your superyacht.
6. Brazil – Baia Dos Porcos
Tucked away in the Fernando de Noronha archipelago is Baia Dos Porcos, also known as the Bay of Pigs, one of “the most awe-inspiring beaches to experience.” “The myriad of blues meddle in perfect harmony on the still water filled with rock formations, including the iconic Dois Irmaos rocks which means the two brothers.” Even better – the beach is likely to be all yours, as it requires a trek to get to, and you have to pay per day to stay on the island, limiting the number of daily visitors. Water sports are forbidden – which means it’s all serenity, all the time. Instead, search for the turtles and wildlife that inhabit the area and find yourself in preserved and natural beauty. Fly into Fernando de Noronha (FEN) Airport with its 6,053 ft. runway. You can hire a guide and driver or charter a boat to reach the beach.
7. Mexico – Playa Paraiso
Playa Paraiso in the Riviera Maya is “a quintessential beach destination for travelers on the hunt for perfection. Stunning white sands and bright teal waters combine to create a beach unlike others in Mexico.” A coral reef rests just offshore ideal for snorkeling or scuba diving. For those who want a tranquil getaway, Paraiso is “their paradise with soft sands just waiting to be relaxed on while the 290 annual days of sun offer a sun-kissed glow.” With an average temperature of 82°F and water at 83°F, visitors are always able to find themselves “comfortable and serene in their tropical paradise.” Easy access is via Cancun International Airport. The Riviera Maya coast includes numerous luxury resorts.
8. Australia – Hyams Beach
“No place on earth invites you to relax and unwind quite like the luxuriously soft white sands of Hyams Beach,” say the beach experts. Located on the South Coast of New South Wales, “this postcard-worthy stretch of sand along the Jervis Bay invites visitors to enjoy underwater adventures in crystal waters or sink their toes into the whitest sands in the world according to the Guinness Book of Records.” For the more athletically inclined, hike in the Jervis Bay National Park located amongst the beach beauties. Dotted with rugged rock formations and bright green foliage, “you may have to pinch yourself to make sure you are not dreaming when you set foot on the luxurious sands of Hyams Beach.” Unfortunately the local airport is military, so you fly into Sydney then hop a helicopter or drive the 125 miles. Accommodations are tourist level so you will probably want to visit Hyams Beach as a daytrip.
9. Mexico – Hidden Beach
“Imagine a beach completely tucked away inside a cave with a cavernous opening in the roof to let the perfect amount of sunlight enter,” say the experts. That is Mexico’s Hidden Beach, and “it’s undeniably one of the most interesting beaches in the world.” Located just a one-hour boat ride from Puerto Vallarta on the Islas Marietas, the only way to reach the golden sand at Hidden Beach is to jump off a boat and swim or kayak through a tunnel to shore. It is said that the hole in the roof of the cave, creating an ideal sunbathing area, was made when Mexican forces were engaging in bombing practice during World War I. Despite the hole’s not-so-natural creation, “the result is one of the most awe-inspiring stretches of sand in the world.” With only a few visitors allowed on the beach at one time, you will get to experience the lush beauty and exquisite scenery in an intimate setting hidden from the world. The beach is a good daytrip from Four Seasons and St. Regis resorts in Punta Mita, both of which have a wide selection of signature suites and standalone villas.