Ah, summertime: the scent of sunscreen, the gentle lapping of waves, seagulls soaring overhead. With the holiday months around the corner, the beach is the only place to be. Lolling about on soft sand with a good book in hand – what could be more relaxing? Yet a trip to the seaside offers fun for all the family. From exploring kaleidoscopic underwater worlds to watching sunsets from luxury catamarans, beaches provide endless entertainment. Here are 10 things to do that should be on any beach goer’s bucket — and spade — list. 

Get up close and personal with marine life

image of a couple of people snorkeling with a sea turtle

Okay, so the goggles are packed. The snappy costume has been neatly folded. Now, just one minor detail – where to go swimming? Well, how about somewhere you’ll be doing the breaststroke alongside exotic sea life? Imagine yourself, eye-to-eye with green sea turtles, or coming within a flipper’s distance of a manta ray. That would be quite the postcard story. 

Watch the sun melting into the sea

two women sitting on a catamaran with a drink and enjoying the sunset

With that endless horizon stretching before you, there’s nowhere as mesmerizing as a good beach. And when the sunset starts resembling the color of the cocktail you’re holding, it’s heavenly. Whether you’re admiring sundown from a Puerto Rican boat or sailing in Hawaii, beaches are magical at dusk.

Explore colorful underwater worlds

a woman and two children snorkeling and watching a school of fish

Some beaches are so peaceful that it’s hard to believe the vibrant activity happening below the sea. Yet stick on that snorkel and peer underwater and suddenly a lively world of marine life comes into view. Tropical fish whirling around colorful coral reefs — and that’s just for starters. Who knows? If you’re lucky enough, you might just spot a dolphin or two.

Escape the crowds on hidden bays

image of a hidden beach

Picture this: you’re watching turquoise waters gently rippling over a beach. Suddenly, a bus-full of travelers start blasting their sound system next to you. Fortunately, it’s still possible to find hidden gems off the beaten track. From World-Heritage-listed islands to exotic white-sand bays, you can still find yourself alone in paradise. 

Feel that adrenaline flowing like the tides

image of two people wearing life vests in the ocean next to a couple of jet skis

The sandcastle is standing proudly, and your skin has been nicely bronzed. Now, it’s time to turn up the heat. With all that space to play with, beaches are perfect spots to get that adrenaline pumping. Whether it’s jet-skiing along stunning coastlines, or kayaking gently over crystal-clear waters, dive in.

Experience the lap of luxury

image of a woman sunbathing on a plank hanging off of a yacht. the ocean around her is a clear blue turquoise colour

Holidays are a time to unwind completely. So, why put in any effort when a crew can do all the work for you? Onboard a luxury catamaran, you’ll be too busy sunbathing on the deck to worry about anything else. That or snorkeling while a cook prepares a delicious buffet for you. Sounds tough, right?

Hop idly between beaches

image of a beach with palm trees and some rock formations.

Some countries are blessed with so many incredible beaches that travelers are spoiled for choice. But then, why settle for one when you can go beach-hopping? After all, you might double your chances of spotting some awesome wildlife. In the Whitsunday Islands, that could mean seeing turtles, seabirds, and just maybe, humpback whales. If all else fails, you’ll have had an adventure!

Discover secret grottos

image of a person snorkeling inside a cave

For the intrepid explorers among you, some coastlines are simply too exciting to miss. And not just because of the incredible snorkeling opportunities in pristine blue waters. The stunning caves of Croatia’s islands are one such place. One trip inside the mysterious Blue Cave is enough to satisfy even the most ardent thrill-seeker.

Watch your footprints pad into golden sand

image of two people's feet while they're standing in the water looking at a star fish near the seashore

A walk along a white sand beach is one of life’s great pleasures. If you can flop yourself out of that hammock, that is. Feeling that sand pad gently underfoot while you kick through warm seas – that’s bliss. At Whitehaven Beach, the sand is so radiantly white you’ll need a good pair of sunglasses along with those flip-flops. 

Stretch those muscles with some sport

image of a couple kayaking

There are no end of muscle-clad exhibitionists on beaches. Yet with sporting activities galore to get involved in, we can pump our biceps a little ourselves! From thrilling kayaking trips to hidden caves to scenic biking tours, there’s no better place to get active. Just don’t forget the sunscreen.

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