The Best Europe Beaches: A Visitors Guide

Myrtos Beach, Kefalonia, Greece

Photo: Myrtos Beach, Kefalonia, Greece courtesy Greeka

The best Europe beaches: Our 8 picks for the top European beaches with crystal clear water, and scenic coast lines

The best Europe beaches are characterized by sandy beaches, crystal clear water, and scenic coast lines. We have ruled out most Mediterranean Beaches where the sand is coarser and pebble-like.

Because of the cooler climate, Europe beaches are best visited from May-October, although the water can be very cool up to June. The July-August months are especially crowded when most Europeans take their vacation.

The Best Europe Beaches

Biarritz Beach, France
Located eleven miles north of Spain in Basque territory, it has become known for its attractions, less crowded than Frances other popular beaches, and lower priced accommodations, The beach has partitioned swimming and surfing areas, and is lined with cafes, resorts, and bars. In late July, the town becomes alive and crowded for the week long Biarritz Surf Festival.

Costa de la Luz, Spain
Located on the south-west coast, it has fine, white sand beaches with dunes, with fishing villages, and cafes. El Palmar Beach is one of the better beaches is the area and is a 10-minute drive from the town of Vejer de la Frontera.

Ibiza, Spain
The island's 16 kilometers (10 miles) of coastline have over 50 sandy beaches that range from secluded coves to tourist crowded beaches. Salinas Beach is a long, white-sandy beach is the most popular beach with an active party crowd and plenty of evening hot spots. For less crowded and subdued, Cala d'en Serra has a tranquil, secluded bay with a sandy beach.

Kefalonia, Greece
Has some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe with its crystal clear turquoise waters and white sands. Kefalonia is made up of hundreds of inlets that are only reachable by boat. Kefalonia Beach is secluded and is fairly well-liked by the rich and famous. Myrtos Beach with white limestone pebbles is set in a deep, wide bay. When viewed from the road above it presents a picture postcard view of the perfect crescent beach.

Sagres, Algarve, Portugal
Bracketed at its western end by a white fort, the pretty undeveloped beach is backed by orange cliffs, with strong waves rollers attracting surfers from around the world. For the beautiful secluded coves, widest sandy beaches, and steep honeycomb cliffs, head west from Albufeira.

Sardinia Island, Italy
Has a beautiful majestic coastline with rocky cliffs and white sandy beaches with turquoise crystal clear waters. Cala Luna is one of the island's best sandy beaches with many caves and seals. Chia beach has the feeling of a Caribbean beach with white sand dunes crystal clear turquoise waters surrounded by juniper trees.

St. Tropez, France
Located in the Côte d'Azur, its the best sandy beach on the French Riviera and is an attraction for wealthy celebrities. This beach front town is also known for its hedonistic parties and the popular beach front nightspot the La Voile Rouge where parties run until the early mourning. Party goers are likely to be found dancing on tables, spraying champagne, and practicing their dance gyrations.

Terracina, Italy
Located on the way to Naples from Rome, its one of the best beaches on Italy's mainland, The beach is long, wide and sandy and is lined with cafes. On clear days you can see the jewels of Campania, the islands of Ischia, and Capri. There are few tourists and the area's facilities and attractions are modestly priced.

Places To Stay

Hotel du Palais
Biarritz, France
Beautiful hotel on the beach with stunning views

Hotel Fuerte Conil
Conil de la Frontera, Spain
Located on the beach front in one of the few remaining unspoiled areas on the Cadiz coast, next to the typical fishing village of Conil de la Frontera

Hotel Rural Can Pujolet
Ibiza, Spain
Surrounded by woods, great rock cliffs with unsurpassed views of the sea.

Four Seasons Country Club
Quinta do Lago, Portugal
The 1800-acres of the Quinta do Lago estate are partly embraced by the Ria Formosa Natural Park, a protected nature reserve of world importance. The park is the habitat for a wide range of resident and migratory birds. The resort is flanked to the south by the eco rich estuary and sand dunes of the nature reserve and this is crossed by a wooden bridge that leads to a vast, sandy, unspoiled beach stretching for several kilometres just a few minutes from Four Seasons Country Club.

Pastis Hotel St Tropez
St-Tropez, France
This charming 9 room boutique hotel faces the sea has rooms with balconies, spacious bathrooms, and grounds having a dark green pool, surrounded by giant palms.

Albergo Mediterraneo
Terracina, Italy
A great Hotel for combining a beach vacation with sightseeing.