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20 Best Summer Beach Destinations

Last updated on Mar 23, 2020 It's pretty likely that this article contains affiliate links. If you click on them I might receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you.

Are you looking for the perfect beach destination? We’re more than half way through June, and well into summer. For the late planners that are still not sure where to spend the hot summer months, and are in search for the perfect beach, this is the post for you!

I have teamed up with some of my favourite travel bloggers to share with you the top 20 most beautiful beaches in the world (in our opinion) that you should be visiting this summer. Start scrolling to discover the best beaches to visit in summer!

The natural pools of the Archipelago of Maddalena, between the islands of Budelli, Razzoli and Santa Maria

The natural pools of the Archipelago of Maddalena in Sardinia, Italy

20 beach destinations to visit this summer

Sardinia, Italy

Sardinia will never stop being my number one choice when it comes to beach destinations. Sardinia has some of the clearest water that you will find in Europe, especially if you visit the famous islands of the Arcipelago della Maddalena.

Imagine crystal clear water, accompanied by white sandy beaches surrounded by Mediterranean shrubs and granite rocks. Thanks to the windy weather, if you love water sports it’s also one of the best locations to practice windsurf and sailing.

With its beautiful beaches Sardinia is the perfect European summer destination.

An over / under water photo taken with a Telesin GoPro dome

An over / under water photo taken in Sardinia, Italy

Cala Soraja, one of my favourite beaches in the Archipelago della Maddalena

Cala Soraja, one of my favourite beaches in the Archipelago della Maddalena

Santa Teresa, Costa Rica

I recently travelled to Costa Rica, and I absolutely fell in love with Santa Teresa. The laid back and chilled atmosphere of the town, paired with perfect surfing waves all day long, quickly turned it into one of my favourite places in the world.

Santa Teresa also has the most incredible sunsets, that you can enjoy on the beach while sipping on a beer or mojito. You can also go on a day trip to the nearby Isla Tortuga, where the water is clearer and you can snorkel with loads of fish.

Drone shot of Santa Teresa beach

Drone shot of Santa Teresa beach

Isla Tortuga in Costa Rica seen from above

Isla Tortuga seen from above

Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia

I only spent three days in Sydney, but I loved the vibe and beaches so much that I’ve been considering moving there since I visited. The view of the Bondi Icebergs Club pool overlooking Bondi beach is one of the most iconic and photographed views in Sydney.

What I loved about it was that despite being a huge beach in a big city, it still had those chill vibes that small surfer towns have. There are lots of great cafes and local shops in the streets around Bondi Beach, where you can grab food after a morning surf!

From Bondi Beach you can also do the famous Bondi to Coogee coastal walk, and explore some of the nearby beaches. Just remember that during European summer it’s winter in Australia, so if you want to enjoy it at its best you have to visit during Australian summer!

View over the Bondi Icebergs Club pool and Bondi Beach

View over the Bondi Icebergs Club pool and Bondi Beach

Weligama, Sri Lanka

The water in Weligama beach might not be as clear as some of the other destinations in this list, but it’s still one of my favourite beaches in the world. The beach has a super relax vibe, with plenty of surf kiosks and restaurants all along it.

The waves here are also super long and easy to surf, perfect for beginner surfers. From Weligama you can also easily visit the nearby town of Mirissa, where you can snorkel with turtles.

Sunset surf in Weligama, Sri Lanka

Sunset surf in Weligama, Sri Lanka

Snorkelling with turtles in Mirissa is a must-do activity when you spend 2 weeks in Sri Lanka

Snorkelling with turtles in Mirissa, Sri Lanka

Corralejo in Fuerteventura, Spain

Corralejo in Fuerteventura, in the Canary Islands, is the town where I did my first surf camp and it will always have a special spot in my heart. The town itself is fairly small, but with a lively town centre with lots of restaurants, bars and shops.

There are beaches all around it (and well, all over the island!) that you can visit. Depending on the wind and tide certain beaches will be sheltered while others will have big surfing waves. It’s the perfect place to learn some water sports!

Learning to surf in Fuerteventura with Planet Surf Camps

Learning to surf in Fuerteventura with Planet Surf Camps

Whitehaven Beach, Australia

“What’s better than 7 km of white sand that doesn’t get so hot it burns your feet? (thanks silica sand) If you answered, “nothing” then Whitehaven Beach should be at the top of your bucket list.

Located in Australia’s Whitsunday Islands this award winning beach is not to be missed.” Whitehaven Beach is a popular stop for backpackers that road trip along the East Coast of Australia.

– by Laura, author of She Who Wanders

Whitehaven Beach, Australia, by She Who Wanders

Whitehaven Beach, Australia, by She Who Wanders

Whitehaven Beach, Australia, by She Who Wanders

Whitehaven Beach, Australia, by She Who Wanders

Gili Trawangan, Indonesia

Gili Trawangan was the favourite part of my recent trip to Indonesia. An entirely pedestrian island, that you can only get around by either bicycle or horse cart, with cute restaurants dotted along the beach, for the ultimate chill beach vibes.

With white sandy beaches and turquoise water, what more could you ask for? There is also the added plus of turtles living just off the coast, which you can easily swim to on a snorkelling trip from the beach!

Enjoying the turquoise water of the Gili T beaches

Enjoying the turquoise water of the Gili T beaches

One of the many turtles we saw while snorkelling in Gili T

One of the many turtles we saw while snorkelling in Gili T

Grace Bay Beach, Turks and Caicos

“I went to Turks and Caicos for the scuba diving, but fell in love with the beaches. We stayed on Grace Bay Beach. I couldn’t believe the colours: pristine white sand, gorgeous sea blues.

The water was the perfect temperature with amazing visibility (which also makes for amazing diving). It fulfils every stereotype you can imagine of the perfect Caribbean beach. If you want to check out more beaches a moped is a great to get around in Turks and Caicos. #nofilter”

– by Michelle, author of IntrepidViajera

Malindi Marine National Park, Kenya

When you think of Kenya you would normally think of safaris, and exploring the savannah on board a Land Rover while searching for the Big Five. What you might not expect are white sandy beaches and turquoise water.

After spending a couple days doing a safari in the Tsavo East National Park we went to Malindi to relax. I’m really glad we did, as the beaches and Marine Parks were amazing.

There are three coral reefs off the coast of Malindi, which make it also a great place for scuba diving.

| READ MORE: BEST OF MALINDI |

The crystal clear turquoise water of the Malindi Marine National Park

The crystal clear turquoise water of the Malindi Marine National Park

Enjoying the beaches in Malindi, Kenya

Enjoying the beaches in Malindi, Kenya

San Blas Islands, Panama

“If you’re after deserted beaches and private islands – San Blas is the place to go! There are around 365 islands to choose from, without the crowds and development that you find elsewhere.

It’s also a great way to get between Colombia and Panama since there’s no other overland route. It’s truly an untouched paradise!”

– by Rachel, author of The Kiwi Couple

San Blas Islands, by The Kiwi Couple

San Blas Islands, by The Kiwi Couple

San Blas Islands, by The Kiwi Couple

San Blas Islands, by The Kiwi Couple

Isla Saona, Dominican Republic

Isla Saona is an island off the coast of Santo Domingo, about an hour away by speed boat. The journey is totally worth it, as you arrive at a beautiful pristine beach.

Imagine the perfect Caribbean beach. Isla Saona will fulfil all your expectations and stereotypes. Tall palm trees shade the edge of the white sandy beach, as people dip in the crystal clear turquoise water.

Isla Saona

Beautifully clear and turquoise water in Isla Saona

Isla Saona

Isla Saona fulfils every Caribbean beach stereotype

Islas Marietas, Mexico

If you’re searching for a beach in Mexico, check out Monica’s (aka From Here To Sunday) beach destination recommendation! “Islas Marietas off the coast of Puerto Vallarta. Most famous for the Hidden Beach where there are a series of islands with soft white sand and clear blue water”

Islas Marietas off the coast of Puerto Vallarta. Pic by From Here To Sunday

Islas Marietas off the coast of Puerto Vallarta. Pic by From Here To Sunday

Islas Marietas off the coast of Puerto Vallarta. Pic by From Here To Sunday

Islas Marietas off the coast of Puerto Vallarta. Pic by From Here To Sunday

Similan Islands, Thailand

If you’re looking for turquoise water, where you can also go snorkelling and scuba diving, with high likelihood of spotting turtles the Similan Islands should be your next stop. Thailand beaches are also great fun to explore by long tail, the typical Thai wooden boat!

Surin Islands, Thailand

Always in Thailand, the Surin Islands are very similar to the Similan Islands, just more off the beaten path.

The Surin Islands don’t even have hotels on them, the only way to stay there overnight is either by camping on the beach or in a live aboard dive boat.

The Surin Islands have soft white sand, crystal clear turquoise water, a rich marine flora and fauna with lots of corals and fish, mangrove forests and the ultimate island vibes.

Fish and corals that you can see while snorkelling in the Surin Islands, Thailand

Fish and corals that you can see while snorkelling in the Surin Islands, Thailand

Enjoying the beautiful beaches of the Surin Islands in Thailand

Enjoying the beautiful beaches of the Surin Islands in Thailand

Phi Phi Islands, Thailand

You’ve guessed it by now, Thailand has some pretty beautiful beaches and I love the country so I’m adding another epic Thai beach destination to this list.

The Phi Phi Islands have become a popular tourist destination thanks to the movie “The Beach” by Leonardo di Caprio (an epic travel movie if you ask me), which was set in Maya Bay in Phi Phi Lei. Maya Bay is closed today due to over tourism but the rest of the Phi Phi Islands are still open to visitors.

I personally love them because the beaches are very scenic, when you couple the white sand and turquoise water with palm trees and limestone cliffs it really creates an impressive backdrop. Koh Phi Phi Don is also an entirely pedestrian island, where you can enjoy some very chill island time.

Click here to book your boat trip in the Phi Phi Islands

Island hopping with a typical wooden long tail boat in the Phi Phi Islands, Thailand

Island hopping with a typical wooden long tail boat in the Phi Phi Islands, Thailand

An over / under shot with fish below and a long tail boat above taken in Phi Phi Lei, one of the best snorkelling and scuba diving spots in Thailand

Snorkelling in the Phi Phi Islands

Mykonos, Greece

“With soft, white sand, clear turquoise water, amazing seafood and some of the friendliest people you’ll meet, Paradise Beach and Beach Club in Mykonos is your go to for relaxation during the day and partying into the night.

Add it to your beach bucket list because after all, as actress Nia Vardalos famously said, ‘In many ways, we are all sons and daughters of ancient Greece’.”

– by Lindsey, author of Seven Day Weekender

Paradise Beach in Mykonos, by Seven Day Weekender

Paradise Beach in Mykonos, by Seven Day Weekender

Paradise Beach in Mykonos, by Seven Day Weekender

Paradise Beach in Mykonos, by Seven Day Weekender

Playa Ancon, Cuba

What I loved most about Cuba was the colonial architecture in Havana, the history of the country, outdoors hiking and horse riding experiences in Vinales and the cute historical town centre of Trinidad. But there is no denying that Cuba has some pretty stunning beaches.

We spent 10 days in Cuba just after a long beach holiday so we weren’t too bothered about visiting beaches, which is why we only scheduled one beach day in our itinerary and it’s safe to say that Playa Ancon was worth it.

Playa Ancon near Trinidad is stunning, not just because of its fine white sand clear turquoise water, but because it was a 10km stretch of beach with very few people there. The perfect beach destination to enjoy your summer away from the crowds!

Chilling at the beach at Playa Ancon, Cuba.

Chilling at the beach at Playa Ancon, Cuba.

Chilling at the beach at Playa Ancon, Cuba

Chilling at the beach at Playa Ancon, Cuba

Cinque Terre, Italy

While the Cinque Terre in Italy are mostly known for the Sentiero Azzurro, the famous cliffside hiking trail that connects Monterosso to Riomaggiore and passes through the towns of Vernazza, Manarola and Corniglia on the way, it is also home to some pretty stunning beaches.

Most of the beaches are rocky as opposed to find white sand but the water is very clear. Add to that the beautiful backdrop of the coloured houses of Cinque Terre and you have a winner.

A cool way to experience the beaches and sea in Cinque Terre is to do a sailing trip, which allows you to swim in the sea while seeing the beauty of the coast line and colourful houses.

The beach in Monterosso, the first town in this Cinque Terre 1-day hike itinerary

The beach in Monterosso, the first town in this Cinque Terre 1-day hike itinerary

Vernazza, one of the towns of Cinque Terre, seen from the Sentiero Azzurro

Vernazza, one of the towns of Cinque Terre, seen from the Sentiero Azzurro

Admiring the colourful houses of Manarola, one of the five towns along the Sentiero Azzurro in Cinque Terre, Italy

Admiring the colourful houses of Manarola, one of the five towns along the Sentiero Azzurro in Cinque Terre, Italy

El Nido, Philippines

I recently spent 3 weeks in the Philippines and absolutely fell in love with the beaches there. Everywhere we went we found crystal clear water and pristine white sand, often surrounded by steep limestone cliffs that added to the scenic beauty of the location.

My personal favourite island where we went beach hopping was El Nido. More so than Coron or other islands El Nido offered a huge variety of beaches and islands, as well as great snorkelling opportunities. Pair that with a chilled back and fun vibe in the town, it’s the perfect summer beach destination.

| READ MORE: BEACH HOPPING IN EL NIDO |

Me and my friends @solarpoweredblonde and @offgoesannie chilling on the beach at Pinagbuyutan Island. Drone shot by @solarpoweredblonde

Me and my friends @solarpoweredblonde and @offgoesannie chilling on the beach at Pinagbuyutan Island. Drone shot by @solarpoweredblonde

The turquoise water of El Nido, Philippines

The turquoise water of El Nido, Philippines

Siargao, Philippines

Another island worthy of mention in the Philippines is Siargao. Siargao is still off the main tourist radar, meaning the islands and beaches aren’t run over by tourists. To me, it’s the embodiment of chill island life.

While I didn’t find the beaches on the island particularly stunning, just a short boat hop away you will find some islands with epic beaches and crystal clear water. If you’re looking for a summer beach trip away from the crowds, this is the place.

| READ MORE: ISLAND HOPPING IN SIARGAO |

The clear turquoise water you will see while island hopping in Siargao, Philippines

The clear turquoise water you will see while island hopping in Siargao, Philippines

Island hopping in Siargao

Island hopping in Siargao

Have you ever been to one of these beaches? Are these the top ten beaches in the world? Or do you have other beach destinations which you love and want to recommend? Let me know in the comments below!

This is just a compilation of beaches that I, or other travel bloggers, personally love and recommend. They are beaches that are particularly beautiful in summer. I hope you find it useful in deciding what beaches to visit this summer!

Can’t get enough of beautiful beaches? Check out this list of top 3 beaches in Algarve, Portugal. If you need help planning for a beach holiday check out this packing list.

Enjoyed reading about the best beaches to visit in summer? Pin it!

Drone shot of the natural pools of Sardinia, Italy, with text overlay saying "20 beautiful beaches to visit in summer"

Drone shot of Isla Tortuga in Costa Rica and a girl walking on a beach in Thailand with text overlay saying "20 most epic beaches to visit in summer"

Collage of beaches around the world, including El Nido, Santa Teresa, Sardinia, Bondi and Siargao with text overlay saying "20 awesome beaches around the world"

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18 Comments

  • Reply
    Alyssa J
    June 24, 2017 at 11:46 am

    This is such a comprehensive list! I love Gili T, it’s one of my favourite islands. Out the 10 I’ve only been to 2. And San Blas looks amazing, you took such great photos! 🙂

    • Reply
      gomoboni
      June 25, 2017 at 4:00 pm

      Thanks, glad you liked it! Gili T was one of my favourite too! Haha same, I haven’t been to all either, adding some to my bucket list!

  • Reply
    Amanda
    June 24, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    I am down for that Australia beach! That water looks amazing!!

    • Reply
      gomoboni
      June 25, 2017 at 3:59 pm

      Same! Never been but would love to go one day!

  • Reply
    Karen Macmillan
    June 24, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    Fabulous ? I love beautiful beaches.

    • Reply
      gomoboni
      June 25, 2017 at 3:58 pm

      Who doesn’t 😉

  • Reply
    Ruth | Tanama Tales
    June 25, 2017 at 4:02 am

    Wow and wow! I do not know if beaches can get more beautiful than these. I will love to visit all these places. For some reason, I am really attracted to Sardinia. #WeekendWanderlust

    • Reply
      gomoboni
      June 25, 2017 at 3:57 pm

      Sardinia is amazing! It’s my favourite beach destination, glad you enjoyed this post!

  • Reply
    Kat
    June 25, 2017 at 8:34 am

    Arh this makes me want to head to the airport right now!! 🙂

    • Reply
      gomoboni
      June 25, 2017 at 3:57 pm

      Haha glad you enjoyed it!

  • Reply
    D of Love C and D
    June 25, 2017 at 9:36 am

    I want to book a beach holiday now! Some great suggestions there. We loved Whitehaven in Oz; beautifully clear water and glaringly white sand that doesn’t get hot! Would love to visit Gili T and I’ve read quite a lot recently about the beaches in Kenya, Who knew?! Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply
      gomoboni
      June 25, 2017 at 3:56 pm

      Haha glad you enjoyed it! I know, I was also pleasantly surprised by the beaches in Kenya! I’ve never been to Oz but would love to go one day!

  • Reply
    Juliette | Snorkels to Snow
    June 25, 2017 at 8:50 pm

    Sadly I haven’t been to any of these beaches that you’ve mentioned but I sure do want to! I love the look of Sardinia, that water is stunning! We were fortunate to live in the Fiji Islands and we experienced some breathtakingly beautiful beaches and islands there! But still, one of my favourite beaches is one not far from my hometown, small and filled with childhood memories 🙂

  • Reply
    Brian & Amanda
    June 26, 2017 at 10:36 pm

    Beautiful beaches for sure! Loved the list and makes me want to be on any of those beaches right now. We totally agree with Sardinia! We went a couple years ago and loved it so much! Can’t beat that one for sure.

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  • Reply
    harry gaur
    May 24, 2019 at 6:28 am

    Thank you for writing such a topic on best summer beach destinations . keep on writing such a topic it will really help me to plan my vacation on one of them you mention in your article.

    • Reply
      Greta
      May 28, 2019 at 8:38 am

      Hi Harry, thanks for the comment, glad you found it useful! I have lots more content on these destinations that you can check out to plan your holiday 🙂

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