When you think of Europe, it's usually the cities that get all the attention. However, the European continent has its own special natural places, in particular, kilometers of sandy beaches, islands and bays, transforming it into a beach destination that should not be envied by the Caribbean. Here are some of the most memorable.
Shipwreck bay. Zakynthos island, Greece
In the fifteenth century, when the Venetians arrived on the Ionian island of Zante (Zakynthos), they called it "the flair of the East" for its beautiful landscapes and were not mistaken. This beautiful Greek island has Navachio Beach, or the Wrecked Ship (it's been famous since 1980 when it baffled a ship that's still aground), its most iconic image, and one of the best beaches in Europe that you can visit.
Le Du Sorel (Torre dell'Orso) Italy
One of the most beautiful beaches of Puglia, the best kept secret of the south of Italy. Torre dell'Orso has one of the best beaches in Europe, famous for its “due sorel” (“two sisters”) because of the two large rock formations that are located on its shore. Before us is a small bay near Otranto with fine sand, surrounded by pine trees and dunes, from which you never want to leave.
Macarella and Macarelleta. Menorca, Spain
South of Menorca are two of the most beautiful beaches in the Balearic Islands: Macarelleta and its neighbor Macarella (they are connected by a small path). Their clear turquoise waters and the vegetation that surrounds them make them the real beach areas of Europe and the best beaches in Menorca.
Cala di Volpe. Sardinia, Italy
The Emerald Coast, north of Sardinia, has some of the most beautiful beaches in the Western Mediterranean. In particular, Cala di Volpe in the Gulf of Arzachena deserves the highest praise. Cause? It is an ecological treasury of clean water and a rich aquatic fauna. The fine sand and reddish rocks are well worth the trip.
Palombaggi. Corsica, France
At the southern end of the elongated island of Corsica are some of those beaches that bring together all the beauty of the purest Mediterranean. Palombaggi is a cove surrounded by pine trees located in Porto Vecchio, a former maritime town now used for tourism. In addition, it is close to the nature reserve of the Kerbicale Islands.
La Pelosa beach. Sardinia, Italy
Stintino is a charming fishing village. There is a harbor with colorful boats, and very close - one of the most impressive beaches in Sardinia - La Pelosa. This sandy beach is famous for the transparency of its waters and an island with an observation tower, which the most adventurous can swim to.
Scala dei Turki. Sicily, Italy
Its name means "Ladder of the Turks" and it is a bay surrounded by white rocks. It is located in close proximity to Agrigento, famous for its archaeological sites. Limestone sedimentary rocks of intense white color have been transformed into alternating footpaths that leave the crystal clear Mediterranean Sea at our feet. Among the beaches that are in the area are Le Pergole and Punta Grande, Giallonardo and Rosello.
Cala Goloritze beach. Sardinia, Italy
Fortunately, the Mediterranean still holds such memorable corners as this one. This sandy beach is sandwiched between white cliffs where the endangered Eleanor's hawk nests. This paradise can only be reached on foot or by boat.
Dunes of Corralejo. Fuerteventura, Spain
The dunes of Corralejo are actually a collection of different white sand beaches and crystal clear waters on the northwest coast of Fuerteventura. They are located in a protected area of 9 kilometers of coastline of the Dunas de Corralejo Natural Park. The sandy beaches of the northern zone (Medano, El Viejo and El Bajo Negro) are extensive and well equipped; but as you move south, the beaches become smaller and wilder.
Sarakiniko. Milos, Greece
In the north of the island of Milos, in the archipelago of the Cyclades, we find one of those whims of nature that we can only define as a natural paradise. Sarakiniko Beach owes its worldwide fame to its volcanic rocks, which have been eroded by wind and water for centuries, giving meaning to its nickname "moon beach". But beyond that, the island of Milos is just one of over 200 Cycladic islands in the Aegean that are!
Benagil beach, Portugal
Without a doubt, this is one of the most beautiful corners of southern Portugal. These cliffs in Benagil on the Algarve coast hide a treasure in the form of a round grotto with a short beach that can only be reached by swimming or boat. It is located next to Benagil, the fishing village after which it is named.
Ses Illetas. Formentera, Spain
This paradise of white sands and turquoise waters in the Ses Salines Natural Park on the island of Formentera is absolutely exceptional: one of Europe's favorite beaches, thanks to the quality of its waters and the beauty of the local scenery.
Playa del Castillo. Apulia, Italy
From the center of the beautiful town of Vieste, in Puglia, you can walk to this beach, which is famous for its impressive limestone monolith 25 meters high - "il pizzomunno". According to legend, two lovers arrived in Vieste, who aroused the jealousy of the mermaids. They seduced a young lover who resisted all the time, which infuriated the mermaids and they retaliated by turning him to stone. Another unique element of this beach is the castle, after which it is named, towering over a cliff. The sea on this coast does not reach great depth, so the beach is ideal for family swimming.
Playa de Benijo. Tenerife, Spain
This is the most photogenic sandy beach in the Canary Islands. It is located north of the island of Tenerife and is a marvel of volcanic origin, allowing you to enjoy communion with nature and one of the best sunsets in the Canary Islands.
Stiniva beach, Croatia
The island of Vis (connected by a two-hour boat ride to Split) has one of the most beautiful beaches on the Croatian coast of Dalmatia. Surrounded by large limestone rock formations, it is almost invisible from the sea; but once you get there, Piedras Blanca Beach is of incredible beauty. This natural monument, protected since 1967, is one of the most beautiful beaches in Europe.
Beach of the Cathedrals (As-Katedrais). Galicia, Spain
La Paya as Catedrais is a natural wonder located in Marinha de Lugo. Its most characteristic feature is the stone arches, domes and spiers that the sea, the wind and the passage of time have sculpted as if they were sculptures. Known as the "Naval Cathedral", it is a must visit if you are traveling in Galicia. During the summer months (until September 17) and also at Easter, you must request a free online permit, which was introduced to protect the beach from large crowds.
Agay is a coastal region of French Provence known for the beauty of its landscapes. Both inland and on the coast, tranquility and nature have been values historically upheld and preserved by the locals. On its coast you will find the Calanques de Maubois, a heavenly place where you can meet few people because the only way to get there is by car. Keep in mind that parking here is very limited. An ideal place for those who are looking for a unique combination of crystal clear waters, clean beaches and absolute tranquility on the Mediterranean coast.
Cassis, FranceAgay is a coastal region of French Provence known for the beauty of its landscapes. Both inland and on the coast, tranquility and nature have been values historically upheld and preserved by the locals. On its coast you will find the Calanques de Maubois, a heavenly place where you can meet few people because the only way to get there is by car. Keep in mind that parking here is very limited. An ideal place for those who are looking for a unique combination of crystal clear waters, clean beaches and absolute tranquility on the Mediterranean coast.
The French Riviera is a paradise for beach lovers. For example, this one. This is a small bay among steep gorges with Mediterranean vegetation. From above, you can see the turquoise blue sea descending towards the beach. The sea is so crystal clear that the sailboats seem to be sailing instead of sailing. Characteristic of the coast of Provence, it is located near the city of Cassis, but can only be reached by boat or after a walk of just over two hours.
Oludeniz and its blue lagoon is one of the pearls of the Mediterranean in Turkey. During the high season, it is crowded with both domestic and foreign tourists. Beautiful surroundings make it indispensable on any route through the country. In fact, various paragliders fly from the surrounding mountains, showing the rich blue color of the lagoon protected by the national park. There is an entrance fee, but it's worth it.
Simos. Elafonisos, Greece
The Peloponnese has been voted the best beach destination in Europe by the World Travel Awards. Simos Beach on the small island of Elafonisos is a good example of a well-deserved award. Its fine white sand interspersed with endemic vegetation and the deep blue color of the sea have made it one of the most famous in the Peloponnese.
Elafonisi. Crete, Greece
Perhaps the favorite color of the Cretan gods was the pink color of this beach. In addition to beaches with white, golden or black sand, there is another feature: the sandy beach with crystal clear water on the islet of Elafonisi is connected to the island of Crete by a reef at low tide. It is part of the Lafonisi Nature Reserve, so despite being visited more and more, it remains relatively untouched.
Galapinos. Setubal, Portugal
You don't have to travel too far from Lisbon to visit one of the best beaches in Europe. Surrounded by the magnificent greenery of the Sierra Arrábida Natural Park, Galapinos is a postcard beach with crystal clear waters. It is a quiet and small sandy beach, which, thanks to its seabed, has also become one of the favorite places for diving enthusiasts.
Playa de Pu. Asturias, Spain
This is one of the most picturesque beaches in Spain. The sea, located at the mouth of the Wallina River and having the shape of a funnel, is not visible from the sand until the tide rises. It is then that the emerald water enters the channel formed over the centuries. It is said that the water there is like a swimming pool, so at Pu Beach, children and parents can enjoy it without danger. Keep in mind, this place is usually very crowded.