Best Clear Water Beaches in the World

If you’re a sun and sand seeker and trotting the globe looking for the clearest waters on the planet, these 10 spots will get you off to a very good start. There are, of course, many more places in the world where you can find stunning blue waters, but these are among my favorites.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Maldives



The Maldives has been a popular honeymoon spot for a good few years now, and even though it’s mostly adored by couples looking for a romantic getaway, there’s plenty to be enjoyed by any kind of beach lover. The Maldives is made up of over 1,000 islands off the southwest coast of India, so to pick one beach with clear waters here would be impossible, as there are hundreds you could choose from. A lot of the accommodation here is huts out in the ocean joined together by boardwalks, off which you can jump straight into the clear ocean. I don’t know about you, but I’m sold!


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Galapogos


The Galapagos

The Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador are the perfect place to team up beautiful white sandy beaches and some of the best wildlife spotting on the planet. There are clear water beaches all over the Galapagos for you to sit back and relax on, and exploring your surroundings for the clearest one near you is half the fun. Pro tip, San Cristóbal has some stunning little hideaways that are well worth hunting down, you might just have to be okay sharing your space with the odd sea lion or two.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Croatia



Croatia is yet another country with a whole range of white beaches with turquoise waters for you to choose from. The country is getting more and more popular by the second, so this is a spot to really get on top of before the hordes of European tourists take over even more than they already have. Top spots include Saharun, a beautiful island getaway not too far from Zadar, Zlatni Rat, or the Golden Cape, a spot that changes shape depending on the wind and tide, and Bili Boci, a pebbled beached with untouched blue waters just ready for diving into.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Malaysia


Mabul, Malaysia

Mabul is an island off the far east coast of Malaysia, a tiny little spot that has some pretty unbeatable and extremely inviting crystal clear waters. It’s one of the best places in the world for certain kinds of diving, which is testament to how clear these waters are; here you’ll find a lot of small marine life to swim among. And if diving’s not your thing, there are several white sandy beaches to relax upon, all fully equipped with blue waters to dip your toes in.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World -  Hawaii



It’s not exactly hard to find a clear water beach in Hawaii, so you’ll no doubt stumble upon one no matter where you are on the islands. Hapuna Beach on the Big Island is well worth checking out if you’re specifically looking for clear waters. If you’d like to head out to a smaller island, Moloniki is famed for having some of the best waters in Hawaii for snorkelling, proof enough that you’ll find clear blue ocean over there.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Menorca



There are more sandy beaches with beautiful blue waters than I could count on both hands in Menorca in Spain, and it could definitely be said that Menorca has some of the best beaches for clear waters in Europe. Cala en Porter, just a short hop from the airport, deserves and mention here – a small beach with some of the bluest waters you’ll find. Cales Coves isn’t a place where you’d really relax in the sand as it’s quite rocky, but if you’re looking for somewhere to really get into the water and get down to some serious snorkelling, this is one of the best place in Menorca. If you really take the time to explore lots of the Menorca coastline, you’ll find plenty of little surprises awaiting you, as there are many little coves that will be quieter than the main beaches and perfect for taking a dip.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Bora bora


Bora Bora

Who doesn’t dream of going to the beautiful Bora Bora one day? To call this place paradise would be too much of an understatement. A lot of the beaches here are privately owned (fingers crossed that you might own one yourself one day!) but Matira beach is one of the few that isn’t. You can find some perfect secluded stretches along this gorgeous beach, the ideal location to stretch out on the sand, or go for a dip in those infinitely blue waters. This is the place where most of us go to in our dreams.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World - Thailand


Koh Phi Phi Don, Thailand

An article about beautiful beaches would be incomplete without Thailand, of course. Lonely Planet named it a ‘hedonistic paradise’, and I won’t even try and beat that description because they’re definitely right. This island is where people always take those incredibly alluring and envy-inducing photos of Thai longboats washed up on the beautiful shores. Take me there now please!


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World -  Columbia


Playa Blanca, Colombia

Around 1 hour by boat from Cartagena in Colombia is Playa Blanca, easily one of the best beaches to visit in the area. It’s a beautiful place to get your snorkel on, take a good swim in the blue waters, or simply relax on the beach and soak up the sun and beachy atmosphere around you. There’s simple accommodation to stay close to the beach, so if you want a break from the craziness that can be South America, Playa Blanca is a very smart choice.


Best Clear Water Beaches in the World -  Seyshells


The Seychelles

Ah, the Seychelles. An instant winner if you’re look for the perfect beach getaway. Here you will find endless white sand beaches with blue waters, and plenty of spots where you’ll be one of the few people on the beach. Anse Source D’Argent is one of the most popular beaches, and for good reason with its classic Seychelles panoramas and some interesting rock formations in the water, which make for good photo ops. If you wanted to get away, check out Anse Major, which is a bit further out but well worth the trek. Here you’ll be surrounded by lush greens of the trees, a gorgeous contrast to the white and blue vistas surrounding you.


Where do you think are the Clear Water Beaches in the World?


Emma Higgins has been writing and travelling on and off since 2009. Her blog, Gotta Keep Movin is full of stories and advice from her trips, which include Europe, India, Morocco, South America, the USA and Canada. Her main focuses are budget travel and volunteering, and she has been involved in sustainable farming in Argentina, animal shelters in Peru, and even tried her hand at making goats cheese in British Columbia. Follow her travels on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram



Author: Nicole

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  1. Wow! I much prefer swimming in crystal clear water. Although I’m quite happy to get my head under the surface with scuba gear and explore, I hate being on the surface and not being able to see what’s beneath me!!
    Lottie Jones recently posted…The Australian Open Spectator GuideMy Profile

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  2. Great picks! I have been to some but not all, so I’ll add them to my list! Koh Phi Phi Don was so touristy that it almost took away from how beautiful it was.. almost! 🙂
    Phoebe (Short Road to Happy) recently posted…We did it!My Profile

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  3. This post is so visually delicious! I literally can’t pick one that is the most beautiful! You make them all sound like I need to go immediately (considering it’s snowing for the millionth day in a row here in Michigan…)!

    Bora Bora has always fascinated me but Koh Phi Phi Don, Thailand might be my favorite from this post! Thanks for sharing guys. LOVE the images 🙂
    Kathleen l Our Favorite Adventure recently posted…Our Favorite Adventures of 2013My Profile

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    • Michael

      We are in Hawaii in a couple of months. Can’t wait!

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  4. I grew up in Georgia, so I don’t mind dark-colored water but the pictures make me wish we had something like that around here. Also, what type of animal is that in the second picture? He looks like a Komono Dragon.

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  5. All so beautiful! I never would have thought that Croatia would have had white beaches.

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  6. Every picture is gorgeous! I just want to travel to each place you mentioned and bask in all of that crystal clear wonderfulness.

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  7. These are indeed the best and beautiful beaches around the world and the images here are just awesome and thrilling. The blog is wonderful and gives an immense idea of beaches.

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  8. I’m glad to see you have the Dalmatian coast of Croatia on the list, it’s stunning! I’m off to Italy and Spain next year & can’t wait to see the water there that I have heard so much about! I love chasing the clearest waters in the world! Similan Islands off Thailand were pretty spectacular too I must say

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    • Michael

      The water in the Mediterranean is spectacular. When you are in Italy don’t miss the Amalfi coast. It was probably our favorite place in Italy.
      Michael recently posted…Sexiest Beaches in the WorldMy Profile

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  9. The water in the Mediterranean is spectacular. When you are in Italy don't miss the Amalfi coast. It was probably our favorite place in Italy..

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    • Michael

      We are lucky enough to have visited the Amalfi Coast. It was also our favorite place in Italy. I was driving and it was hard not to drive off the road with those stunning views!

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  10. Greetings, just wanted to inform you that we had a great time at Marina de Bolnuevo in September of this year. We flew into Alicante and hired a car from the airport for the short drive to Bolnuevo. The beaches are fantastic, most of them awarded the Blue Flag. The restaurents were great, with paella on the beach a highlight and managed a day on the nudist beach there. Very liberating. We also visited the Big Guns, The Roman Mines and the Sand sculptures. Will be returning there again next year. Thanks for reading Niall.

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