Summertime is synonymous with beach days –– and we refuse to give that up just yet. As the dog days of summer come to a close, we’re spending time at our favorite beaches around the world to soak in the last of the summer’s rays. We’ve asked some of our local friends in seaside destinations across the globe where they’re spending their remaining summer days. From protected marine preserves in Hawai’i and secluded coves in Greece to Southern Californian surf towns and Big Sur’s violet-hued sand beaches, these are some of the best-hidden gem beaches across the globe.
HULOPOE BEACH | Lanai, HI: Lanai is a secluded oasis across 90,000 acres with plenty of sparkling ocean views, activities and accommodations for Hawaii travelers to discover. Set sail on an ocean adventure and catch spinner dolphins frolic around in the surf as Lanai offers one of the best waters in the world for whale watching.
Locals Quote: “A protected marine preserve, Hulopo‘e Bay offers some of the best snorkeling and diving in Hawai’i and is a favorite beach of people on the island. Located on the pristine island of Lanai, the glistening beach is footsteps from Four Seasons Resort Lanai and a quick drive from Sensei Lanai. En route, guests pass Hulopo'e Heritage Complex, an ancient fishing village. Spinner dolphins play in the Bay’s sparkling water, endangered green sea turtles are regular guests, you may even see a humpback whale during winter months.” - Tuma Fauatea, Beach Manager
PFEIFFER BEACH | Big Sur, CA: Most famous for its violet-hued sand, Pfeiffer Beach is a beautiful unspoiled destination on the rugged and stunning Big Sur coastline, complemented by the charming Big Sur beach community that exudes a deep connection with its natural surroundings, evident in the friendly people and magnificent “hidden gems.”
Quote: "The magnificence of Big Sur speaks for itself, and encountering Alila Ventana simultaneously is a magical experience as the property emits a special connection to its beautiful natural surroundings. Guests should visit Pfeiffer Beach during their visit to experience its violet-hued sand and famous keyhole arch. Visitors who are lucky enough to visit us around mid-January will have the opportunity to visit the beach at sunset and witness the sun lining up directly with the arch as it sets into the ocean –– creating a mystical beam of light peeping through the arch." –– Anthony Duggan, General Manager
GRANDVIEW BEACH | Encinitas, California: Located along six miles of Pacific Ocean coastline, Encinitas is one of Southern California’s most iconic coastal towns and is an unspoiled reminder of the historic Highway 101 beach culture that thrived in the mid-1900s. Stop by Grandview to watch the of surfers and take in the beautiful coastline.
Quote: "Encinitas has always worn its surf history proudly. And while the beaches have long drawn surfers with some of the best breaks in Southern California, its the unique blend of San Diego's top surf shops, coffeehouses, record stores, independent restaurants, eclectic boutiques and active community that now make this beach town a must-visit for surfers and non-surfers alike." -- Ben Thiele, General Manager
JUANILLO BEACH, Cap Cana | Dominican Republic (pictured): The exclusive eastern tip of the Dominican Republic has always drawn travelers to its shores for its rich culture, pristine white sand beaches and perfect weather - think the Punta Canta's of the world. However, Cap Cana is the hidden gem of the Dominican Republic and offers a beachfront high-end gated community, private beaches, marina, a surge of cultural activities and is completely private (only those staying in a resort can access the community).
Locals Quote: “With a variety of activities, beautiful views, beaches and ultimate privacy, Eden Roc Cap Cana is a hidden gem that provides travelers with an ultimate luxury escape.” - Rosalynn Castillo, Director of Sales and Marketing
PAPAS BEACH | Ios, Greece: Papas Beach is tucked away in a remote, unspoiled corner of the Greek island of Ios, surrounded by cliffs and boasting golden sand and clear, blue water.
Locals Quote: "Calilo offers a tranquil retreat amongst the Cyclades, and Papas Beach is tucked away in a remote, unspoiled corner of the island. The beach is surrounded by dramatic cliffs and offers guests of Calilo a private experience to swim, sunbathe, relax and align with nature. Our vision is to preserve, protect and share the beauty of the island with our guests, and Papas Beach is a treasure to the island that we hope everyone will have a chance to experience." - Angelos Michalopoulos, Owner of Calilo
INDIAN WELLS BEACH | Amagansett, NY: Visit the iconic beaches of East Hampton and Amagansett as you escape the city’s end-of-summer heat. Indian Wells is a locals favorite, as non-residents can’t park there and it provides the beauty of quintessential East Coast beaches.
Locals Quote: “Amagansett should be on every beach-goer's travel list this year, as this Hamptons gem has transformed into a year round destination. From sunbathing in the summer, to cozy beach bonfires on a crisp fall night, there are so many different experiences to be had. You also can't forget the wonderful restaurants and shopping lining Main Street!" - Sylvia Wong, Owner of The Roundtree, Amagansett
LITTLE TALBOT STATE PARK | Amelia Island, FL: Located in the most North East corner of Florida, Amelia Island is a picturesque seaside destination located on a remote barrier island with 13 miles of expansive, private beaches. Visit Little Talbot State Park for white sandy beaches, gorgeous dunes, and even beautiful coastal forests.
Locals Quote: “Amelia Island is a coastal treasure, hosting eight flags throughout its rich history and heritage. Our location on a barrier island provides guests with privacy and freedom to explore, including the 13 miles of dune-lined beaches, kayaking and fishing its tidewaters as well as biking under canopies of ancient oak trees. This year guests will find an exciting new chapter for the resort with newly designed rooms, suites and dining options that enliven artful culinary presentations and curated guest experiences in celebration of our 30th anniversary.” said General Manager Greg Cook.
PLAYA ESCONDIDO | Riviera Nayarit, Mexico: Riviera Nayarit is located between the Pacific Ocean and the Sierra Madre Mountain range, and just north of Puerto Vallarta Mexico. Nestled along the coastline is Punta Mita, and very closeby sit two special beach towns in Riviera Nayarit – Sayulita and San Pancho. Must do’s in the beach town of Punta Mita include surfing lessons at Playa La Lancha and taking a swim to Playa Escondido hidden inside the Marieta Islands.
Quote: “The beautiful region of Riviera Nayarit is a coastline of diversity lined with luxury resorts and picturesque traditional villages alike, secluded beaches, lush vegetation, crystal blue waters and the accessibility to nature. Just up the road from Conrad Punta de Mita, guests can access waterfalls and forest trails, or spend the day on our beaches surfing or paddleboarding. The options are impressive, and this is drawing more interest to the region with many luxury developments recently opened or planning to open in the next year or two. Fast becoming the new hot spot, Riviera Nayarit, and specifically, Punta de Mita, has evolved into a world-class destination, and increased airlift from most major U.S. markets is making it easier to get here.” – Marco Tabet, General Manager
BILL BAGGS CAPE FLORIDA STATE PARK | Key Biscayne, FL: Key Biscayne is an unexpected island getaway, just minutes from Miami’s cosmopolitan center, yet feels worlds away with its lush tropical gardens and infinite ocean views. Stop by the state park and visit beaches that have repeatedly been listed as some of the best beaches in the country.
Quote: “Key Biscayne is a remote, slice of paradise located just 6 miles from downtown Miami, yet feels like it’s own private island. This tropical destination boasts two of the best state parks with hiking and biking trails for the more active traveler, along with pristine beaches for those seeking a more relaxed approach when visiting this sun-soaked coastline. As the perfect getaway from the neon lights of South Beach, Key Biscayne is full of natural beauty and is even home to the oldest lighthouse in the state of Florida.” - Mark Ferland, Market General Manager
BLACK SANDS BEACH | Sausalito, CA: Located just over the Golden Gate Bridge boasting unrivaled views of the San Francisco Bay, a quaint downtown, a rich history and access to numerous beaches, Sausalito is a picturesque town with an undeniable coastal flair, perfect for travelers looking for a calming respite without ever being too far from the magic of San Francisco.
Locals Quote: "Sausalito is a hidden gem of a beach town. Nestled right up against the famed San Francisco Bay, radiating charm and unrivaled water views, Sausalito offers easy access to the numerous beaches of the county (from Baker Beach to Rodeo Beach), perfect for surfing, kayaking, boating, and so much more, and there's no better home-base for ocean lovers than Cavallo Point." - Brendan Carlin, General Manager