by Ali Findlay
on November 18, 2016
4 min read

The sun is warm on your face. As you stand up, a slight breeze moves the air around you. The baked white sand heats the bottom of your feet as they carry you towards the ocean. Water laps softly over your toes, and, as you wade deeper, the transparent sea surrounds you in its cool but refreshing embrace. You stroll back to your deck chair, book, and G&T… the stresses of life having long since exited your mind.

Although Africa is renowned for its safari holidays, the continent and its surrounds hold some of the world’s most exquisite beaches. Here are some of our favourites. Warning: get ready to experience extreme levels of wanderlust.

1. Tsarabanjina beach: Madagascar

This tiny idyllic island is located off the coast of Madagascar, near Nosy Be. Home to dreamy turquoise waters and powdery sand, the remote beach is also devoid of crowds as the island is only accessible via boat.

Tsarabanjina beach Madagascar

Tsarabanjina Resort

2. Watamu beach: Kenya

In Kenya’s Watamu National Marine Park you’ll come across this quiet sandy paradise. A renowned snorkelling destination, this beach hides beauty beneath its ocean surface as well.

watamu beach kenya

Filip Lachowski

3. Anse Source d’Argent: Seychelles

Surrounded by towering smooth boulders and cascading jungle, Anse Source d’Argent is one of the most photographed beaches in this region. Finished by soft snow-coloured sand and dreamy cerulean ocean, this beach is nothing short of spectacular.

Anse Source d'Argent beach Seychelles

Jean-Marie Hullot

4. Nungwi beach: Zanzibar

Home to a plethora of travel-brochure beaches, most of Zanzibar’s coastlines will leave you starry-eyed and drooling, including the picture-perfect Nungwi beach. With unimaginably turquoise water and practically untouched sand, it’s perfection personified.

nungwi beach zanzibar


5. Camps Bay beach: Cape Town

With prime views of the Twelve Aspostles Mountain Range, combined with sky blue water and powdery white sand, Camps Bay is certainly one of the Mother City’s most renowned beaches. Although the water is a little chilly, this is the place to be on a hot day — the views will never disappoint.

camps bay beach cape town

6. Anse Georgette: Seychelles

One of the less frequented beaches of Praslin, Anse Georgette is no less beautiful. Often less crowded than other beaches and with unbelievably clear water, this beach is pure paradise for water babies.

anse georgette seychelles

Fabio Achilli

7. Diani beach: Kenya

You’ll find Diani Beach approximately 30km south of Mombasa along Kenya’s Indian Ocean coast. With dense verdant vegetation, platinum sand, turquoise-green sea, and magnificent sunsets, Diani definitely had to make it on to our list.

diani beach kenya

Łukasz Ciesielski

8. Boulders Beach: Cape Town

Home to idyllic scenery and a large colony of African penguins, Boulders is hidden in Simon’s Town, just outside of Cape Town. A visit to this renowned beach means you are likely to share a swim with these amazing flightless birds.

boulders beach cape town

Bas Leenders

9. Anse Intendance: Seychelles

Found on Mahe Island, Anse Intendance is yet another picture-perfect Seychelles spot. With a luscious green-covered mountain backdrop and only one resort, this wild and unspoiled beach is also a favourite surfing location.

Anse Intendance beach Seychelles

Jean-Marie Hullot

10. Pemba Island: Zanzibar Archipelago

Located off the coast of Tanzania near Zanzibar is the remote and unspoiled Pemba Island. Known as the “Green Island” in the past, Pemba is home to lush tropical greenery and is surrounded by lagoons, mangroves, and coral reefs.

pemba island zanzibar archipelago

Marcel Oosterwijk

11. Flic en Flac beach: Mauritius

Packed with picturesque sandy spots, Mauritius is one of the most popular Indian Ocean islands. Flic en Flac is everything you think of when you dream of Mauritius: silver sand, clear water, and lush greenery… African island paradise.

flic en flac beach mauritius

Sandy Marie

12. Île aux Nattes: Madagascar

You’ll find this teeny tropical island just off the southern tip of Sainte Marie, near Madagascar. Only 3km in diameter, this island is the real-life version of your tropical island dreams. Blue skies, cream-coloured sand, palm trees, and azure-gradient ocean… need I say more?

ile aux nattes madagascar


13. Anse Lazio: Seychelles

Located on Praslin Island, this picturesque combination of sand and sea is flanked by mountain peaks on each side and sheltered by a thick collection of palm and takamaka trees. Whether you snorkel, swim or tan there’s no way of ignoring the dazzling scenery of this legendary beach.

anse lazio seychelles

Bjørn Christian Tørrissen

14: Clifton: Cape Town

Next to Camps Bay you’ll find Clifton’s four beaches. Smaller and more sheltered than their renowned neighbour, the white sand and blue waters are an ideal host on windier days or in the evening when the sun makes its daily descent.

clifton beach cape town