Planning an international beach vacation this year? You've come to the right place. We love exploring new locations where you can kick off your REEF flip flops and sink your toes into the warm sand before heading out to surf or swim in the waves. Explore our list of best beaches in the world to get inspired for your next trip.
Taghazout, along the coast of Morocco, has become a prominent surfing destination known for its diverse breaks, from beginner-friendly to challenging reef breaks. The vibrant local culture and consistent waves make it a must-visit for surf enthusiasts exploring international destinations. Beginner surfers should check out the beach at Panoramas, while more experienced ones should try their hand at Mysteries. In the evenings, explore the area's restaurants, which offer a wide selection of both Moroccan and western cuisine.
Teahupo'o, Tahiti (French Polynesia)
Teahupo'o, a small village located on the southwest corner of Tahiti, is famous for its powerful and consistent waves, attracting elite surfers from around the globe. The waves are said to have the perfect barrel, particularly if you visit anytime between April and October. However, you'll need to watch for shallow reefs in addition to heavy winds and huge swells. Teahupo'o is so unique that it will play host to the surfing portion of the 2024 Paris Summer Olympics.
Supertubes, Jeffreys Bay (South Africa)
Jeffreys Bay is home to one of the world's best right-hand point breaks, offering long, fast rides. Supertubes is a portion of Jeffreys Bay that is known for one of the best right-hand point breaks in the world. For the best waves, plan your trip between May and September. It's wintertime in South Africa, but you'll get exposure from the westerly winds known as the Roaring Forties. Experienced surfers will enjoy six-second barrels. Also keep an eye out for wildlife — both dolphins and sharks are common in the area.
Fernando de Noronha (Brazil)
Located on the northeast coast of Brazil, the beaches of Fernando de Noronha, especially Cacimba do Padre, are known for their crystal-clear waters and excellent surf conditions. It's a volcanic island without any continental shelf, which protects the power of the wave swells. If you visit between November and February, you'll get to ride waves of at least three feet. Cacimba do Padre's breaks have both left and right hollow barrels. With only 5,000 people inhabiting the island, you'll also enjoy a natural ecosystem that is largely undisturbed. Book in advance, because the number of tourists allowed on the island at one time is limited to 500.
Byron Bay (Australia)
A popular surf destination, Byron Bay on the east coast of Australia offers diverse breaks suitable for surfers of all levels. The town may be more crowded than some of the other destinations on our list, making it ideal for surfers who want to socialize after hitting the waves all day. There are multiple beaches to explore. For the most consistency, check out Tallow Beach. It's a local favorite thanks to its north wind protection — just watch out for strong rip tides while you're out on the water.
Uluwatu, Bali (Indonesia)
Uluwatu is renowned for its consistent waves and stunning cliff-top views, attracting surfers and spectators alike. It's on the west coast of Bali and home to Suluban Beach, with six sets of reef breaks that are covered when the tide comes in. The dramatic coastline includes both caves and cliffs that are beautiful all year long. The surrounding area is equally breathtaking, with historical temples to explore as well as local restaurants nestled on the top of the cliffs.
Jeffreys Bay (South Africa)
Aside from Supertubes, Jeffreys Bay has several other breaks, making it a paradise for surfers seeking variety. In total, it spans 1200 yards of continuous breaking water, making it one of the best beaches in the world for surfing. Warm currents from the Indian Ocean hit cooler water temperatures from the Atlantic, combining to make great swells on a beautiful coastline. If you need a different set of thrills in Jeffreys Bay, check out Bloukrans Bridge, home to one of the world's highest bungy jumps. You'll also have plenty of restaurants and coffee shops to explore when you're ready to relax.
Hossegor is in southwestern France and is considered part of the "European Hawaii." It's famous for powerful beach breaks and hosting international surf competitions. You get the perfect blend of top notch surfing with the casual elegance of French cafes and cabanas. Plus, this smaller town is more lowkey than Biarritz, which is a better known surf spot in France. There are no sheltered coves in Hossegor, with break directions dependent on where the swells come from. For calmer waves, plan a visit in summer or fall. For more intense conditions, consider traveling to Hossegor in the winter.
Raglan (New Zealand)
Raglan is known for its long left-hand point break, providing surfers with some of the longest rides in the world. Known as New Zealand's surfing capital, you'll experience ongoing swells from the South Pacific. Plan your trip anytime between May and August for the best surfing conditions. While you're there, plan time to explore the blacks and beaches as well as the shops and restaurants throughout Raglan. You also won't want to miss Bridal Veil Falls that's just 10 minutes away and features dramatic 55-meter waterfalls.
Santa Teresa (Costa Rica)
With its consistent waves and tropical surroundings, Santa Teresa is a popular destination for surfers seeking a laid-back atmosphere. You can find beach breaks for all experience levels throughout the year. And if you're ready to socialize, you'll find several surf camps at a range of prices to choose from. Santa Teresa also has a growing food scene, ranging from casual vegan eateries to beachside venues with expansive drinks menus.
What's your favorite international beach destination? Tag us in your photos to let us know!