Summer comes with glorious sunshine and wanderlust, luring us all on the world’s most beautiful shores. From Spain to Seychelles, and from white secluded coves with sparkling turquoise waters to long strips of golden sand, here are 10 of the planet’s finest beaches.

Navagio Beach, Greece

Navagio Beach Zakynthos

Navagio Beach, Zakynthos

Often referred to as the most spectacular and photographed beach in Greece, Navagio is a small secluded cove on the north-west shore of Zakynthos Island, bounded by the Ionian Sea. The sugar-white beach with iridescent turquoise waters plays host to an ancient shipwreck, which together with the surrounding steep cliffs, create a breathtaking landscape. Navagio beach is only accessible by boat.

Anse Source d’Argent, Seychelles

One of Seychelles’ most popular beaches, yet secluded enough to spring in mind the idea of paradise, Anse Source d’Argent captures through its fascinating mix of perfect white sands, swaying palm trees and unusual granite boulders that drop dramatically into a crystal-clear turquoise sea. The beach is located on the quaint island of La Digue, where life goes slowly and development is kept to a minimum.

Lover’s Beach, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Lover’s Beach Mexico

Photo by Renee Silverman

Although the romance that comes with the name might not be so evident here, Lovers’ Beach is still stunningly beautiful. It lies on the picturesque Land’s End, facing the Sea of Cortez, and fascinates visitors with its lovely setting and unusual rock formations. The clear blue waters rich in marine life make for a real snorkeling paradise.

Whiteheaven Beach, Australia

Whiteheaven Beach

Photo by leGuik

Named by CNN the world’s top Eco Friendly Beach, Australia’s Whiteheaven is a jewel of white silica sand that stretches over 7 km along the Whitsunday Island. On its northernmost tip lies the spectacular Hill Inlet, an unusual backdrop of water and dazzling strips of sand.

Railay Beach (Phra Nang), Thailand

Railay Beach Thailand

Photo by Mike Behnken

Sheltered by soaring limestone cliffs and bathed by the shallow waters of the Andaman Sea, Thailand’s Railay Beach is actually a series of three beautiful beaches, from which Phra Nang is the most spectacular. The area is especially famous for climbing, and can only be accessible by boat.

Black Sand Beach, Maui

Black Beach Maui

Photo by Scott

Nestled in Hana’s wonderful Wai’anapanapa State Park, between lush tropical greenery and black lava cliffs, the unusual Wai’anapanapa Beach is not just a patch of black sand, but a sacred place deep rooted in the Hawaiian culture.

Pfeiffer Beach, California

Pfeiffer Beach California

Photo by Dzung Tran

The peculiar purple sand, the dramatic offshore rocks and the mystical light that occurs for a couple of days each year on the charming Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur, California, make this place a one-of-a-kind experience for photographers from all over the world.

Cocoa Island Beaches, Maldives

Cocoa Island Maldives

Photo by willsydney

There’s no such thing as ugly beach in the Maldives, but the white pristine sands and shimmering sapphire waters at Cocoa Island are perfect from any angle you look.

Ses Illetes, Formentera, Spain

Ses Illetes Formentera

Ses Illetes, Formentera

Arguably one of the most beautiful beaches in the Mediterranean Sea, Playa de Ses Illetes on the pretty Balearic Island of Formentera has all the right elements: translucent blue waters, Caribbean-white sands and a laid-back, bohemian atmosphere that adds color and vibrancy to the pristine, postcard-perfect landscapes of Formentera, transforming it into a Spanish paradise.

Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janeiro

Ipanema Beach Rio

Ipanema Beach

The sexiest beach in the world, according to Travel Channel, Ipanema is the place where natural beauty blends charmingly with beach chic, where days fall into nights on sensual samba rhythms and where people applaud the spectacle of the sun going down in the long summer days.

What’s your favorite beach in the world?

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  • GlobalGrasshopper (@globalgrasshopr)

    Good choice, I’ve been to a few of these and I agree they’re really beautiful!

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  • Matthew Hirtes

    Shame you couldn’t fit any Canarian beaches on your list. But I’ve written these sort of features before, and it’s difficult to limit your choices to a mere 10. It is, of course, also entirely subjective.

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  • Miruna Corneanu

    You’re right, Matthew, it is pretty difficult. However, when I first made the draft, there were 3 Spanish beaches, but then I thought it wasn’t fair and I decided to write two posts: this one and another about top beaches in Spain.Thanks for stopping by!

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  • ann cabezas creed

    ann cabezas creed ann cabezas creed

    Reply Author

    There are many nice beaches in Costa Rica on the Pacific Coastline. One of the most beautiful with white sand is Hacienda Panilla.

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