Is it so much to ask for a gorgeous beach all to ourselves? (No offense, German tourists in Speedos.) Here, nine of the most secluded stretches of sand, all across the globe.
Salema Beach (Portugal)
Unlike most of the Algarve, which is overrun with tourists from May through August, Salema is an undiscovered gem in southern Portugal. Drive through the small fishing town past whitewashed houses and wildflowers to reach one mile of untouched, golden sand lapped by the Atlantic waters.
Bai Dai Beach (Vietnam)
About 70 percent of the small, tear-shaped Vietnamese island of Phu Quoc is protected as a national park, which has halted large-scale development, and with it, the crowds. The most secluded spot, Bai Dai Beach, is found on the western side, where crystal clear water extends into the Gulf of Thailand.
Lovers Beach (Nevis)
A five-minute walk down an unmarked dirt path will transport you to a mile-long empty stretch of velvety sand on this Caribbean island’s north coast. In addition to solitude, Lovers Beach also offers fantastic views of sister island St. Kitts.
Baia do Sancho (Brazil)
Unless you’re from South America, you’ve probably never heard of Fernando de Noronha, an archipelago of gorgeous islands that see very little tourism. There, you’ll find Sancho beach, one of Brazil’s most beautiful and quiet stretches. Sure, you have to get there by schlepping about 20 minutes on foot—past a dirt trail, through several rock crevasses and up a precarious-looking ladder--but the end result is so worth it.
Great Rock Bight (Martha's Vineyard)
This preserve, which looks out toward the southern tip of Cape Cod, is one of Martha’s Vineyard’s best-kept secrets. The beach features a huge rock poking its head out from the sound, which you can swim out to and jump off of…if you dare.
Brava Beach (Uruguay)
José Ignacio is one of those rare places that’s chic and trendy yet still off the grid. Go any time other than Christmas week and the beach will be so quiet, you’ll hear the waves crashing and grassy dunes swaying in the wind.
Fakistra Beach (Greece)
While the Greek islands are idyllic, most beaches are pretty darn crowded. Not Fakistra, which is found in the Mt. Pelion region, just near the quaint mountain village of Tsagarada. Don’t expect to find beach chairs and umbrellas for rent, though. It’s all you and the blue lagoon.
Polihale State Park (Hawaii)
This 17-mile stretch of shoreline on Kauai’s western coast is practically deserted. The wild landscape, hugged by the mountainous Napali coastline, features towering sand dunes, cacti and some of the most incredible sunsets in the world. The remote, unspoiled location comes with strong winds and heavy undertows, but there’s no better place to escape the crowds.
Ko Adang (Thailand)
This tiny island just north of Koh Lipe in the Andaman Sea is home to way more wild monkeys than people, and rich with dense, green forests and cascading waterfalls that give way to white, sandy beaches and emerald green water. See ya never, humanity.