Health and Travel Alerts Learn More Left arrow

With their unrivaled beauty, white sand beaches lure travelers to tropical locales around the world. From the southern U.S. to exotic locales in Asia, these ideal vacation spots are the perfect place to experience pure bliss.

Enjoy local cuisine and refreshing cocktails while watching beautiful sunsets along unspoiled shores after a day of exploring marine life in the turquoise seas. Stroll powdery stretches and search for seashell gems as waves wash across your feet.

Whether you’re searching for a relaxing, palm-tree-lined beach or access to sun-fueled activities, here are the best white sand beaches for every type of traveler.

Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman

White sand and clear blue water of Seven Mile beach

Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman

The western coast of Grand Cayman is home to one of the top white sand beaches in the Caribbean. This expansive stretch of white coral sand is a popular destination for beach-goers and offers a little something for every type of interest.

Stretch your legs on a leisurely walk, while perusing beach bars and restaurants that line the shore. In between basking in the warm sunshine, allow yourself to be lured by the pristine turquoise waters for a swim, or go snorkeling in Grand Cayman. Underwater, marvel at schools of vividly colored tropical fish that inhabit the calm waters directly off this crescent-shaped beach.

Palm trees provide a shady respite to cool off. Catch a thrill by engaging in some of the available beach activities, such as parasailing and stand-up paddleboarding. To cap off a perfect day, take in a spectacular sunset as the sky turns shades of pink, orange, and red.

Clearwater Beach, Tampa, Florida

Clearwater Beach, one of the best white sand beaches in the world

Clearwater Beach in Tampa, Florida

Situated on Florida’s Gulf Coast, Clearwater Beach near Tampa draws visitors with its gorgeous white sand and clear, shallow waters. Proximity to downtown Clearwater makes this stretch of sand an ideal spot to combine fun in the sun with exciting culinary options and shopping. Nearby, you can experience marine life at the popular Clearwater Marine Aquarium, too.

With so many attractions at your fingertips, the only issue will be choosing how to spend your time at Clearwater Beach. Stroll the promenade, go jet-skiing, enjoy a fishing afternoon, watch a game of volleyball, or simply relax seaside with a good book.

Make sure to stick around for sunset at the iconic Pier 60, when you’ll want your camera on hand for the evening show put on by Mother Nature that is usually accompanied by live music and local performers.

Palm Beach, Aruba

Aerial view of Palm Beach with white sands and turquoise waters

Palm Beach, Aruba

Palm Beach is one of the world’s best white-sand beaches. This tropical paradise on the island of Aruba has calm, clear waters that are ideal for swimming and the soft sand is perfect for a day of pampering yourself under the Caribbean sun.

The beach stretches for approximately two miles long and has a popular path if you’re looking for a leisurely walk. Try some of the best things to do in Aruba like getting your adrenaline pumping with a jet ski ride or exploring the rich variety of sea life under the surface.

Laid-back beach bars and delicious restaurants are available in Palm Beach’s idyllic seaside setting. Catch one of the island’s sunsets at one of the best beaches in Aruba.

Te Amo Beach, Bonaire

White sand beach and clear blue waters of Te Amo Beach, Bonaire

Te Amo Beach, Bonaire

White sand has never been so romantic. Experience the peaceful Te Amo Beach (which translates as “I love you beach”) on Bonaire. Pristine waters lap the sugar-white sand, creating an ideal ambiance to unwind.

Enjoy a stroll and cool off with a swim in the clear seas, where you’ll find excellent snorkeling. Spot graceful fish, such as snapper and parrotfish, weaving their way through the colorful reef. Grab a snack at the local food truck and indulge in a fresh catch paired with a gorgeous island backdrop that makes this one of Bonaire’s best beaches.

Playa Las Bachas, Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos

Playa Las Bachas, one of the best white sand beaches in the world

Playa Las Bachas in Santa Cruz Island, Galapagos

Head to Las Bachas Beach in the Galapagos for white sand and diverse wildlife. Named after an abandoned World World II barge, this stretch of sand is perfect for nature lovers. As you venture along the beach, you’ll have the opportunity to spot a wide array of birds and endemic animals such as iguanas, flamingos, and vibrant Sally Lightfoot crabs.

You may also have the chance to view sea turtles, as this beach is one of the primary nesting sites on the island. Appreciate the striking scenery composed of white sand, azure seas, and tropical vegetation including salt bushes and mangroves. Playa Las Bachas is one unforgettable white sand beach.

White Bay Beach, Jost Van Dyke, BVI

Turquoise water of Jost Van Dyke

White Bay Beach in Jost Van Dyke, BVI

Set foot on some of the softest white sand in the world when you visit Jost Van Dyke’s White Bay Beach. This cove in the British Virgin Islands is a popular spot for anchoring boats looking to visit the island’s lively beach bars.

Grab a refreshing tropical drink, relax in the sun, take a dip in the inviting clear aqua seas and enjoy the view. If you’re interested in exploring beneath the surface, the offshore reef is home to diverse marine life, as well.

Carlisle Bay Beach, Antigua

White sands of Carlisle Beach

Carlisle Bay Beach, Antigua

Laze the day away at the protected cove on the sugary white sands of Carlisle Bay Beach in Antigua. The contrasting light blue waters and lush hillsides provide a seaside haven to unwind away from the crowds.

Take a nap, enjoy a peaceful walk, or jump in the water for a slow swim. This is also one of the best spots to go diving and snorkeling in Antigua, perfect for those looking to explore the underwater world right from the beach.

Anse Vata Beach, Noumea, New Caledonia

Powdery white sands of Anse Vata Beach

Anse Vata Beach in Noumea, New Caledonia

Head to the South Pacific and uncover the striking white sand beach of Anse Vata in New Caledonia. Natural scenery featuring palm-fringed sands and lagoon waters will have you swooning.

Observe skilled wind-surfers from your seaside perch along the long stretch of beach or embark on a kite-surfing or paddle-boarding adventure. Snorkeling near the jetty, you’ll discover a rich underwater world with colorful reefs. Enjoy local fare at the beachside cafes and restaurants, which always enjoy a refreshing sea breeze.

Cable Beach, Nassau, Bahamas

Soft waves of Cable Beach

Cable Beach in Nassau, Bahamas

Spanning two-and-a-half miles, Cable Beach in Nassau is known for its dazzling white sand. Soak up the sun on this popular stretch of sand that offers a healthy balance of relaxation and water activities including a myriad of boat, snorkeling, and scuba diving excursions that depart from this beach.

Aside from delicious restaurants and bars, a casino and golf course are also some of the alluring attractions in Cable Beach. Make sure to try out the fresh seafood, particularly conch, which is the most well-known Bahamian food.

Read: Best Beaches in Nassau 

Tivua Island, Fiji

Boarwalk leading to Tivua Island in Fiji

Tivua Island, Fiji

Located in the Yasawa Islands of Fiji, tiny Tivua Island is the definition of paradise. An impossibly white sand beach surrounds the whole spit of land with turquoise waters complimenting the scene.

If you can tear yourself away from the soft white stretch, fantastic snorkeling also awaits. Marvel at the graceful marine life as you greet angelfish, needlefish, and coral in an array of colors while exploring this world-class reef. Tivua Island also serves as a turtle sanctuary during nesting season.

Whitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Islands, Australia

Beautiful white island of Whitsunday

Whitehaven Beach in Whitsunday Islands, Australia

Visit one of the world’s most beautiful white-sand beaches in Australia’s Whitsunday Islands. Situated on the largest of the island collection, Whitehaven Beach spans over four miles along pristine turquoise seas that host the famous Great Barrier Reef.

At the northern Hill Inlet at the edge of the beach, view otherworldly sand and sea patterns with vibrant colors. This vista is one of the most memorable white sand scenes in the world.

Read: Best Beaches in Australia

Isola Bella, Taormina, Italy

Beautiful view of Isola Bella's lush landscape

Isola Bella in Taormina, Italy

Referred to as the “Pearl of the Ionian Sea,” Isola Bella is a small island and nature reserve off the coast of Sicily that was once owned by King Ferdinand II. A narrow beach of the same name connects the tiny spot of land to the mainland.

This white pebble stretch of sand is one of Italy’s most beautiful beaches and is mostly accessible during low tide. Calm waters provide an ideal environment for swimming while gazing at the picturesque scenery.

Read: Best Beaches in Sicily

Cockleshell Beach, St. Kitts

Aerial view of Cockleshell Bay's shoreline

Cockleshell Beach, St. Kitts

The southern shore of St. Kitts is host to one of the most stunning white-sand beaches in the Caribbean. An eclectic array of beach bars line this lively stretch of sand that boasts some of the best views on the island.

Take a walk and enjoy the vista that stretches to St. Kitts’ sister island, Nevis. Sip a refreshing cocktail while basking in the sun as the aquamarine water laps the soft sand.

Read: Best Beaches in St. Kitts & Nevis

Copacabana Beach, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

People enjoying the pristine beach of Copacabana

Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Travel to Rio de Janeiro and visit one of the world’s most famous white-sand beaches, Copacabana Beach. This wide stretch of sand is complemented by a lively promenade and buzzing atmosphere.

Enjoy the views of some of the most famous landmarks in Brazil, like Fort Duque de Caxias and Sugar Loaf Mountain, from the beachside restaurants and bars or watch volleyball and soccer games from your lounge chair. There’s no shortage of entertainment to mix with sun and sand at Copacabana Beach.

Great Bay Beach, St. Maarten

Pristine waters of Great Bay Beach with reclining chairs

Great Bay Beach, St. Maarten

Unwind on Great Bay Beach in St. Maarten, where you can admire tropical views along the mile-long boardwalk. This expansive white sand beach is the perfect spot to soak up the sun, swim in the pristine Caribbean waters, and indulge in fresh, local cuisine.

With a wide array of amenities and activities at your fingertips, the only thing left to do is relax while enjoying the view of the sea.

Couple walking at the beach

Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman

Discover some of the world’s best white sand beaches on a cruise to paradise. Browse itineraries on our website and book your beach vacation today.

Free Vacation Planning Services

Free Vacation Planning Services