Summer is a perfect time to unwind on a sunny beach with clear waters. However, beaches can become a bore — if you’ve been to one, it may seem like you’ve been to them all. Perhaps you love swimming in the crystal waters or laying out on the lush sands, but you’re just tired of the norm. Well, we’ve made a list of beaches that are anything but common. On these beaches, you can walk around on soft sand as you would on any other beach, but there’s a twist — it’s colored!
1. Santorini Beach
Red Sand Beach In Santorini, Greece
The Santorini Red Sand Beach located in Greece is known for its dominant red sand. Reaching the beach isn’t the easiest, however; you either have to walk on a downhill path or arrive by boat. It’s best to practice precaution when reaching the beach because the area is known for landslides. Once you make it past the hard part, though, the beach is perfect for snapping a few pictures and viewing the “steep red hills that create a captivating, wild scenery,” according to Santorini View.
2. Kaihalulu Beach
Red Sand Beach In Hana, Maui
Located in the middle of Hana, a town on the east coast of Maui, is Kaihalulu or Red Sand Beach. Reaching this beach also involves walking a dangerous and steep path, so it doesn’t get a ton of visitors. That said, if you’re looking for an isolated beach to escape to, this will be the perfect place for you.
3. Papakolea Beach
Green Sand Beach In The Kau District Of Hawaii
This beach’s sand gets its green shade from the semiprecious olivine stone that gets deposited on the sand by the ocean’s waves. Keeping with the trend of secluded colored sand beaches, Papakolea is located within a bowl-shaped geological formation. In order to get to it, you have no choice but to climb down the bowl. This is a risky choice, but according to GoUS Hawaii, it’s worth the trip.
4. Horseshoe Bay Beach
Pink Sand Beach In Bermuda
This pink beach gets its name from its curved shape. The pink sand, however, is the result of crushed coral and calcium carbonate mixing together in the sand. Luckily, this beach is less of a danger to get to than the previous beaches. In fact, anyone can easily reach it by public transportation.
5. Reynisfjara Beach
Black Sand Beach On The South Coast Of Iceland
This non-tropical beach in Iceland gets its impressive black sand from eroded volcanic rocks. According to Arctic Adventures, the beach has appeared on at least one top 10 list of most beautiful non-tropical beaches in the world. When visiting this stunning beach, it is recommended not to stand too close to the water — the waves are extremely powerful and can be harmful. Enjoy the surf crashing on the black sand from a safe distance!
6. Ramla Bay
Orange Sand Beach On Gozo Island In Malta
This burnt red-orange beach in Malta is not a traditional red-sand beach at all. It’s actually a bright orange with red undertones that lead to it being categorized as a red beach. The beach is so stunning that it was featured in Travel + Leisure magazine’s list of seven most beautiful red sand beaches according to the Malta Independent.
7. Punalu’u Beach
Black Sand Beach Between Pahala And Na’alehu, Hawaii
Punalu’u Beach is one of the most famous black sand beaches in Hawaii — possibly because of the endangered Hawksbill turtles and green turtles that live on its sands. The sand here gets its black color from volcanic lava fragments. If you look closely, you might see some larger fragments that are still recognizable as coming from an old lava flow.
8. Pink Sands Beach
Harbour Island, Bahamas
By catching a ferry, you can travel relatively easily to this smaller island in the Bahamas, which is home to a beautiful pink sand beach. The sand here gets its pink color from a marine animal, the foraminifera, and its red shell mixing with the white sand. If you’re feeling adventurous during your time in the Bahamas, this is definitely a beach you should make some time to visit.
9. Muriwai Beach
Black Sand Sparkling Beach In Auckland, New Zealand
This sparkling black beach gets its color from its iron sand, which contains a mixture of minerals originating from volcanic materials. The sand is so firm that it has actually been designated as a highway where vehicles can drive straight to the ocean’s edge — just be mindful of a few spots of quicksand as you enjoy your walk by the water.
10. Pfeiffer Beach
Purple Sand Beach In Big Sur, California
The purple hues that define the sand of this beach are a result of highly concentrated garnet. The colored sand on this beach isn’t as vibrant as some others on this list as the whole beach isn’t purple. Instead, there are some areas of sand that have a more purple tint than others.
11. Glass Beach
Sea Glass Beach In Fort Bragg, California
This beach takes us in a bit of a different direction. The colorful grounds of this beach aren’t the result of a chemical reaction in the sand, but instead the presence of colorful aged sea glass. Due to a devastating earthquake in the area in 1906, glass remnants swept into the ocean, only to eventually wash back to shore — now in their tumbled, sea-glass forms. For an in-depth explanation of this uniquely stunning beach, check out the top 10 things to know about visiting California’s Glass Beach.
Whichever beach you set your sights on, imagine escaping to these beautifully colored sands and shores for a vacation you’ll never forget. Transcend the typical and put one of these colorful beaches on your travel list!