They are far from Bondi and a great distance from the Great Ocean Road. They’re also nowhere near Margaret River and a hell of a haul from the Gold Coast.
So where are the best beaches in the world? According to TripAdvisor, the 2017 Travellers Choice Awards results show the best beaches in the world are in Latin America.
According to Chad Carey, co-founder of Australia’s leading Latin America specialist Chimu Adventures, this is no surprise as Latin America is a dream destination for beach lovers everywhere.
‘We are thrilled to see so many Latin American beaches featured on TripAdvisor’s top list,” he says. “Each one of them truly deserves their spot in the top 10 for they are more than just your everyday beaches, they are destinations in themselves.’
Topping the list is Baia do Sancho, a beach on the remote Brazilian island of Fernando de Noronha. Often a TripAdvisor favourite, Baia do Sancho is a beautiful and secluded beach that is only accessible to travellers by boat or by hiking down a narrow staircase from surrounding cliffs. A new entrant to the top 10 is Galapagos Beach at Tortuga Bay in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador.
‘It’s not just the white sand and turquoise waters that make Latin America’s beaches so unique,” says Chad. “It’s the reefs, the islands, the flora and fauna, the natural settings that inspire. Each beach has its own, distinctive character and gives travellers access to some of the most memorable travel experiences they can have in Latin America such as wildlife spotting, snorkelling, coastal walks and rafting, to name only a few.’
Here are the top things to do at the Latin American beaches that made the list.
Only accessible by boat or by hiking down a narrow staircase from surrounding cliffs, Baia do Sancho is the epitome of seclusion and natural beauty. Set in an archipelago of 21 islands, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is one of the most stunning places in Brazil with its crystal clear water and abundant marine life. Baia de Sancho is great for scuba diving, surfing and snorkelling.
Eagle Beach is more than a beach, it’s a nature spectacle. Apart from being a picture perfect natural beauty, it is also home to most turtle nests on the island. Seeing baby turtles as they hatch is a great experience for many.
Playa Paraiso (translated ‘paradise beach’ in English) with its white sand and turquoise waters does justice to its name. It’s the perfect place for undisturbed sunbathing.
Playa Norte is a beach for the naturalist with sea turtles and whale sharks making regular appearances. There are also some great reefs in the area. Although the beach is very quiet, there are shops and restaurants nearby.
The perfect beach for the wildlife lover, Galapagos Beach is one of the best places to see Galapagos marine life including colourful reef fish, rays, sea turtles and Marine Iguanas.
Have you visited Latin America? Tell us what your favourite beach is!