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9 Beautifully Bizarre Beaches Around the World

From the Galapagos islands to those in Greece, these coastlines are unlike anything you’d expect

Airplane on Maho BeachPhoto: Paula Anddrade/Getty Images

Maho Beach, Saint Martin

If you consider yourself an aerophile, a visit to Maho Beach should be at the top of your bucket list. The sandy escape borders an airport and sunbathers are often able to watch planes fly extremely low before touching down at the landing strip.

Elafonissi beach with pink sand on Crete GreecePhoto: Patryk Kosmider/Getty Images

Elafonissi Beach (Crete, Greece)

Like cotton candy swirled with crystals, Elafonissi Beach is one of the world’s most magnificent sites. The bubblegum color comes from Foraminifera shellfishes, which leave red shells after they die. Overtime, the shells get crushed up and mixed with the sand, leading to the pastel hue.

Two tourists walking at Giants Causeway an area of hexagonal basalt stones created by ancient volcanic fissure eruption...Photo: MN Studio/Getty Images

Giants Causeway Beach (Country Antrim, Northern Ireland)

Over 40,000 massive black basalt columns define this beach in Northern Ireland. While its name is derived from myths that giants created the distinctive landscape, a geological study shows it was formed from volcanic activity 50 to 60 million years ago.

Red sand beach on Rabida Island in Galapagos National Park EcuadorPhoto: Getty Images

Red Sand Beach (Rabida, Galapagos)

Located on the northern side of Rabida Island, Red Sand Beach in the Galapagos looks like something you’d expect to find on Mars. The island was formed from a volcanic eruption, and the vibrant shade is a result of high-levels of iron in the lava. In addition to its distinct color, the locale also has a large sea lion population.

Hawaii Green sand beachPhoto: Damien Verrier/Getty Images

Papakōlea Green Sand Beach (Hawaii)

Papakōlea is one of just a few green beaches in the world. Located on the Big Island, the Oz-like destination is located inside a bay cut into a side of cinder cone—a type of volcano—that erupted 50,000 years ago. The emerald shade is due to the mineral olivine.

Benagil Cave Lagoa Algarve PortugalPhoto: Juan Carlos Fotografia/Getty Images

Benagil Cave (Algarve, Portugal)

There’s no need to bring a sun shade to this beach in Portugal. Completed with a natural skylight, Benagil Cave was formed through years of erosion. Many travelers rent kayaks to get to the hidden beach, which is located between two towns, Portimao and Albufeira.

Sunbathers on a black sand beach photographed from directly above Tenerife SpainPhoto: Abstract Aerial Art/Getty Images

Playa de los Gigantes (Tenerife, Spain)

Like other colored beaches, this one on Tenerife, Spain, also gets its chroma from volcanic activity. One of the Canary Islands, lava formed black rocks, which overtime eroded to sand in the same color.


Via Architectural Digest

Joyce Rey
Joyce Rey
Joyce Rey

Joyce Rey is one of the most respected names in luxury real estate worldwide, having represented some of the most significant properties in the world.



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