If work is making you feeling worse for wear (we know how you feel!), one of the best ways to restore your tired mind, body and soul is to take a break. Picture this: the sun in your eyes, wind in your hair and your toes in the sand. What could be better than a weekend – or a week – by the beach to get yourself back on track? We’ve got a list of the five best beaches for the perfect wind-down. After all, there’s no vitamin quite like vitamin sea.
1 Bondi Beach, Australia
Been working on your summer body all year? Then you’ll be hard pressed to find somewhere better to stretch your toned legs than at the iconic Bondi Beach in Sydney. Known as the beach to see and be seen, it’s easy to see why. The bold and beautiful flock to the white sand beach, surfers chase the waves, swimmers do laps at the Icebergs ocean pool while others wine and dine at nearby cafes and bars. Here, the crowd is almost as good looking as the scenery, so make sure your phone is fully charged for those Instagram-worthy snaps.
2 Cape Panwa, Thailand
If your idea of a beach getaway means getting away from it all i.e. going off the grid, then Cape Panwa in Phuket would be your best bet. While the western side of the island is a bustling a tourist mecca of resorts, bars and clubs, on the eastern side where Cape Panwa lies is much quieter. Dig your toes into soft white sandy beach, take dip in the crystal clear water and luxuriate in expansive views of sea without a care in the world!
3 The Whitsundays, Australia
How do you feel about checking out the only living thing on earth that’s visible from space? We’re talking about the Great Barrier Reef, which is the largest coral reef on earth and one of the seven natural wonders of the world. Nestled at the heart of the great Barrier Reef is The Whitsundays, a group of 74 islands, most of them uninhabited and are characterized by dense rainforest, hiking trails and white sand beaches. Here you’ll also find the iconic picture perfect paradise that is Whitehaven Beach, voted time and again as Australia’s number one beach. The fact that wifi is scarce might just be the best part of this picture-perfect paradise.
4 El Nido, Philipines
This Philippine municipality on Palawan island is known its for white-sand beaches, crystal clear waters (so clear that boats look like they’re floating on air!), coral reefs alive with colourful fishes and majestic cliffs. Whether you’re in for some much needed R & R or an adventure, El Nido has something for everyone. Laze on the beach and enjoy the breath-taking views surrounding you or head out and explore nature’s wonders. There are plenty of dive sites including Dilumacad Island’s long tunnel that leads to an underwater cavern, lagoons, marble cliffs, prehistoric caves and waterfalls that are all easily explored.
5 Flores, Indonesia
If you’ve had enough of white sandy beaches and want something else for a change, our vote goes to Pink Beach in Flores. A short flight from Denpasar airport (or a 4 to 5-hour boat ride) away from the heavily touristed streets and sights of Bali, lies this gem in the Nusa Tenggara region of Indonesia. Here, you’ll find the beach is actually pink thanks to tiny red coral fragments that when mixed with the white sand of the beach, makes up the pretty pink hue. Add the blue hues of the ocean surrounding it and you get a pretty paradise you won’t get anywhere else.