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Photo credit Sophie Dale and Maxime Bui

Europes best white sand beaches

Have you been dreaming of long, hot days relaxing on powder-white sand with a good book and nothing to think about but when you’ll have your next swim? We’ve put together a list of some of Europe’s best white sand beaches to inspire you to get out the flip-flops and head off on a sunny escape.

Navagio Beach

Zante, Greek Islands - Navagio Beach, or ‘Shipwreck Beach’ is on the coast of Zakynthos (Zante), in the Ionian Islands. It’s an isolated, white sand cove, home to the shipwreck, Panagiotis. With sheer, limestone cliffs surrounding astonishing blue water, it’s also a famous base-jumping spot. You can access the beach by boat from nearby Porto Vromi and you’ll need to take everything with you, as the area is completely secluded.

Pinarello Beach

Corsica, France - The white sands of Pinarello Beach are lined with pine trees in the seaside hamlet of Pinarellu. Dramatic mountains serve as a backdrop to shallow, azure water, perfect for the whole family to swim in safe conditions. You can also enjoy restaurants and beach bars after a fun day of windsurfing, boating or jet skiing.

Cala Luna

Sardinia, Italy - Cala Luna is a crescent-shaped beach in Sardinia, hence its name, which means ‘half-moon’ in Italian. With abundant marine life, warm sea temperatures and crystal clear visibility, it’s a fantastic spot for divers and snorkellers. To reach this sandy paradise, hike from Cala Fuili or catch a boat from the port at Cala Gonone.

Porto Katsiki

Lefkada, Greek Islands - This stunning strip of sand and sea is located on Lefkada Island, 40 kilometres from the island’s capital city. It’s worth the climb down the cliffs via 80 steep steps, just to dip your toes into the shimmering ocean. There are sunbeds and umbrellas available for rent, however, there are no lifeguards, so go early in the morning to avoid the afternoon swell, which is great for surfers.

Macarella Beach

Menorca, Spain - Sheltered by pine tree-covered hills, the fine, white sands of Macarella Beach are warm enough to sunbake on, even in winter. Close to the city of Ciutadella, the beach is also home to a restaurant and you can walk to Macarelleta Cove, which is popular with nudists.

Oludeniz Beach

Turkey - Oludeniz Beach is lined with shops, cafes and restaurants. ‘The Blue Lagoon’ is famous for its turquoise and aquamarine water and regularly tops ‘The World’s Best Beaches’ lists. Bordered by a national park and surrounding mountains, this beach blends everything you could possibly need for a fun-filled adventure.

Playa de Ses Illetes

Ibiza, Spain - A quick boat trip from Ibiza brings you to the white sands and Mediterranean blue waters of Playa de Ses Illetes. Stretching to the tip of the Trucador Peninsular, the beach is a favourite with Ibiza clubbers as a chill-out zone, snorkellers and windsurfers. Arrive early to enjoy the exquisite scenery or late in the afternoon to restart the party.

Rabbit Beach

Sicily - Rabbit Beach, on the island of Lampedusa, is one of the few places loggerhead sea turtles still go to lay their eggs. You can access the picturesque bay by ferry or boat and you may just find yourself swimming with dolphins in the crystalline water.

Sopot Beach

Poland - You’ll need to go in late August and early September for warm weather, but Sopot’s pristine, vast white sands won’t disappoint. Bordered by cycle paths and forest trails, the beach is a playground for adventure seekers and packed with spa-goers, athletes and party seekers.

Falsterbo Beach

Sweden - Sunglasses are required to step onto the glaring white sands of Falsterbo Beach, at the south-western tip of Sweden. You won’t find jet skis or motorboats here, just quaint beach huts painted in purple, blue and yellow and decadent ice-cream shops, perfect for a serene day at the beach.

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