Europe's Top 50+ Beaches

  • Playa de Puerto Rico // Spain

    Playa de Puerto Rico

    This family-friendly beach on Gran Canaria's southwest coast is probably best known for being the island's sunniest spot, with more hours of sunshine than anywhere else. 

    Combine this with a sheltered sandy beach and it's no surprise to know that it's an extremely popular spot with tourists, but it can get busy quite quickly. 

    Adrenaline-filled watersports are big business here, with usual… read more »

  • Playa de Sardina del Norte // Spain

    Playa de Sardina del Norte
    Wolfgang Sauber

    You'll find this picturesque beach in the far north of Gran Canaria, away from the hordes of tourists that flock to the busier seaside spots of Playa del Ingles and Playa de las Canteras.

    With its rugged cliffs, whitewashed buildings and soft gold sands, this place is perfect for some Insta-worthy snaps, and it has a far more traditional… read more »

  • Playa de Guayedra // Spain

    Playa de Guayedra

    Nestled along Gran Canaria's northwest coast, this secluded beach is as far away from the tourist trail as it gets. 

    The closest town, Agaete, is around 15 minutes' drive away, or just over an hour if you fancy the scenic walk, which takes you along the roads and down the hillside.

    Alternatively, if you are driving straight to the beach, you'll still… read more »

  • Playa de Melenara // Spain

    Playa de Melenara

    This cosy black sand beach is tucked along Gran Canaria's eastern coastline, just a 10-minute drive from the airport, and around double that to the island's capital, Las Palmas.

    It's more locals than tourists here, so you're more likely to get an authentic Canarian beach experience than you would at some of the island's busier beaches.

    In terms of facilities, they've kept… read more »

  • Playa del Inglés // Spain

    Playa del Inglés

    This sprawling strip of biscuit-coloured sand is on Gran Canaria's southernmost tip, and it's undoubtedly one of Europe's best-known beaches.

    The golden sand stretches for a little under three kilometres, and the rolling dunes dotted along the beach make it one of the more unique stretches of shoreline you're likely to come across.

    On the facilities front, there's a good mix of… read more »

  • Playa de los Guios // Spain

    Playa de los Guios
    Michal Gorski

    Playa de los Guios is a black lava sand beach surrounding by the modern concrete seawall of the port to its south and high rugged cliffs to the north. It is also known as Playa Los Gigantes – the name given to these cliffs.

    At around 100 metres in total, it is not the largest of beaches in Tenerife. However, calm… read more »

  • Playa de la Concha (Lobos) // Spain

    Playa de la Concha (Lobos)

    Almost closed off from the seas that surround the Isla de Lobos, Playa de la Concha lies at the end of a bay formed by a jutting peninsula. It is pretty much the only beach on this uninhabited island since the rest of its coastline is dominated by volcanic rock.

    Easy to access thanks to its proximity to the pier where… read more »

  • Les Grottes (Île du Levant) // France

    Les Grottes (Île du Levant)

    One of the four islands which make up the Îles d'Hyères, the Île du Levant sits just off the southern tip of mainland France. Less than 10km off the coast the island is a quick ferry ride away, but a very different world awaits.

    The majority of the heavily forested 8km long island is owned by the French military and is… read more »

  • Plage de Kerler // France

    Plage de Kerler
    © atomdruid

    This long strip of sand stretches for nearly 2 kilometres between the popular holiday town of Benodet and Pointe de Mousterlin. However, the beach manages to retain an air of seclusion and wilderness as it is cut off from the town by a river estuary.

    It is perhaps because of this relative remoteness that the beach has a nudist section. This clothing… read more »

  • Spiaggia di Marianelli // Italy

    Spiaggia di Marianelli
    © izanbar

    The Spiaggia di Marianelli Riserva Naturale di Vendicari sits near the southeastern tip of Sicily looking out over the Ionian Sea. It is one of a string of lovely beaches set within the protected coastline of the Riserva Naturale di Vendicari.

    Nestled in a small, shallow bay backed by sand dunes dotted with almond and lemon trees, Marianelli is widely viewed as… read more »

  • Guvano Beach // Italy

    Guvano Beach

    It may seem a little strange that what is perhaps the best known beach in Cinque Terre is also one of the hardest to get to. Up until a few years ago there was a choice of ways to reach Guvano beach. 

    The most unique of these involved a 1.5 kilometre long tunnel running from near the station in Corniglia right… read more »

  • Acquarilli Naturist Beach // Italy

    Acquarilli Naturist Beach
    © bill_17

    Set in a horseshoe shaped bay on the southern coast of Elba, Acquarilli is a charming little beach that, unlike its neighbours, never attracts a crowd. Spiaggia di Acquarilli is located between the popular beaches of Lido di Capoliveri and Lacona, which are probably the best-known on the island. The reason this little cove remains quiet is that access is a… read more »

  • La Feniglia // Italy

    La Feniglia

    The Spiaggia della Feniglia, or just La Feniglia is a vast expanse of sandy beach which connects the promontory of Argentario to the Tuscan mainland. With 7 kilometres of sand arcing its way along the bay it isn't difficult to find a quiet spot, although it does tend to be quite busy at either end of the beach.

    If you do make it… read more »

  • Spiaggia della Paolina // Italy

    Spiaggia della Paolina
    © DanieleFiaschi

    Spiaggia della Paolina lies just off the coastal highway in a large bay on Elba's northern coast. Apparently named after Napoleon Bonaparte's sister (the French emperor was exiled on the island in May 1814), Spiaggia della Paolina is a mix of sand and small pebbles reached by following a well-used path through coastal woodland.

    Approximately six metres wide, enough for a… read more »

  • Spiaggia di Fetovaia // Italy

    Spiaggia di Fetovaia
    © DanieleFiaschi

    Perhaps the most photographed beach on the island of Elba, and it's easy to see why. Besides the near white sand and incredibly clear blue water the beach is protected by the 800 metre headland of Punta di Fetovaia. This granite finger of rock, covered in lush Mediterranean vegetation points out into the Tyrrhenian Sea forming a long, narrow and… read more »