Australia. We’re the smallest continent and the largest Island – “our home is girt by sea” – Our magnificent coastline stretches for nearly 37,000 kilometers and there are reportedly over 10,000 beautiful beaches in Australia all sporting their own unique beauty. Be it pristine white sand and turquoise waters, a brilliant surf break or perhaps beaming with wildlife, no doubt, there’s something special about all of them, however, since we haven’t been to all 10,000 (wouldn’t that be amazing), of those we have, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite ‘top 10′ to share with you.
10. Wineglass Bay
Location: East Coast of Tasmania
The first word that comes to mind when describing Wineglass Bay is “Wow!” Just about 2-and-a-half hours north of Hobart is the Freycinet Peninsula where you’ll also discover some of Tasmania’s most magnificent wildlife, marsupials & birds. When you first spot Wineglass Bay, the curved beach fringed by aqua blue water makes you feel like you’re in a tropical paradise. Then of course you suddenly remember you’re closer to Antarctica than the equator! The water is so clear, you can see seashells five metres below the surface. Its simply breath taking.
9. Lake McKenzie
Location: Frazer Island, QLD
Whether you enjoy staying in resorts, camping in tents or in your campertrailer or taking a day trip to explore new lands, Frazer Island is a ‘must-visit’ tropical paradise. The island itself is totally made up of sand and Lake McKenzie, located 6.2 km southeast of Kingfisher Resort is well worth the walk or drive to experience its amazing beauty. Its called a ‘perched’ lake, which means is has been formed by water accumulating on top of a thin impermeable layer of twigs and leaves. People say you can exfoliate your skin with the mineral sand and soften your hair in the clear water. I think Lake McKenzie is possibly one of the most stunning of Fraser Island’s lakes as the sands around the lake are composed of pure, white silica and the water in the lake is so pure you almost can’t believe it’s real. It is 1200 meters long and up to 930 meters wide. Picture perfect. If you do go camping on Frazer, remember there are no shops and limited facilities. If you’re staying more than a few days, its a good idea to take a stockpile of supplies and a reliable generator.
8. Palm Beach
Location: Gold Coast, S.E QLD
Situated between Tallebudgera & Currumbin Creeks, Palm Beach is patrolled by surf life savers at the end of 7th Avenue, 19th Avenue and again at Nelly’s – a popular surf break. The best thing about Palmy, is that dogs are allowed on the beach off the leash (as long as they are more than 100m from the red/yellow flags). Every morning you’ll find it a very busy & sociable time for dog owners. Even during school holidays, this beach is not busy and you can walk for hours on the nice flat shoreline. Cute beachside cottages and impressive estates dot the shoreline and have an enviable view. If you have small children, you’ll love the Pirate Ship playground in Palm Beach Parklands just over the sand dunes. There you’ll also find one of the best situated cafes in Palm Beach – The dunes cafe
7. Manly Beach
Location: Sydney’s Northern Beaches, NSW
A thirty-minute drive or ferry ride from the CBD and you’d think you were miles further north. Manly is so named after Captain Arthur Phillip’s encounter with the confident and manly Aboriginal people of the Kay-ye-my clan who lived there. Surrounded on 3 sides by water, Manly is a great destination to experience the waves as well as relaxed sheltered snorkeling and also sailing or boating on the harbour. Manly Beach is always packed with locals and tourists all year round due to its beautiful weather, patrolled beaches and plethora of cafes, restaurants and hotels. Swim at 3 flagged areas – Queenscliff, Manly or South Steyne or the rock pool at Fairy Bower. The Manly Corso and weekend markets encourage a spot of holiday shopping but if nothing else, make sure you venture along the picturesque walk around to Shelley Beach. Its absolutely magical. Checkout The The Bower Restaurant along the way at Fairy Bower or keep going right round the Shelley for something pretty special at Le kiosk.
6. Noosa Beach
Location: Sunshine Coast, QLD
Noosa’s Main Beach is a spectacular little cove on Australia’s Sunshine Coast. It’s one of the few beaches along Australia’s coastline that faces north. It has moderate waves, is patrolled seven days a week and is safe for swimming all year round. Take a stroll around the headland along the National Park walkway past Little Cove to get a glimpse of Noosa from another perspective. Checkout Tea Tree Bay, Granite Bay and Alexandria Bay if you prefer a ‘clothes – optional’ beach! Dining up market anywhere along Hastings Street is a treat or enjoy the million dollar view right on the beach at the surf club.
5. Byron Bay
Location: Northern NSW
Byron is most famous among locals, tourists and backpackers alike for its funky, alternative culture and sensational surf break. While whale watching has also become one of its famous attractions and contributes significantly to the tourism and economy of the place. Cape Byron protrudes into the Pacific Ocean and forms the most easterly point of the Australian mainland and is one of the best vantage points for whale-watching. From the end of June to August, these majestic creatures migrate northwards to calve in the warm northern waters. Then, in September and October, they return with their new babies. Whale watching cruises and kayaking tours with Seakayakadventures are a never forget experience. Take your walking shoes because the beautiful walk from the town right up to the lighthouse is exquisite and memorable as it winds around natural bushland, giving you glimpses of secluded beaches such as Clark’s, The Pass & Wategoes. If you love camping, there are plenty of camp grounds to choose from and even in peak season, you can usually snag a spot to pitch your tent or park your campertrailer at Glen Villa Resort. Our pick for lunch or dinner is at the Byron Bay Hotel with stunning views overlooking main beach and a great atmosphere all day long. checkout their gigguide for whats on.
4. Burleigh Heads
Location: Burleigh Heads S.E QLD
Burleigh Heads is well-known for its surf break. No wonder it’s on the ASP World Championship Tour schedule! The Burleigh Break Pro featuring some of the world’s best surfers now includes a women’s Division driving Gold Coast surfers onto the world stage. Tourists and locals can enjoy swimming, body boarding and of course surfing or if you like walking, checkout the walking track that stretches from Tallebudgerra Creek, around the Burleigh Heads National Park and all the way up to Surfer’s Paradise. This place is always a buzz with families and fitness enthusiasts taking advantage of the free electric BBQs, parks, playgrounds and council created exercise equipment. If you love a good take away coffee, check out ‘The Nook‘ under the surf club. mmmm terrific.
3. Cable Beach
Location: Broome, 2200km north of Perth in WA
Known for its spectacular sunsets and popular camel rides, Cable Beach is a beautiful, long, flat 22km stretch of sun-kissed white sand, set against a stunning backdrop of red ochre cliffs and fringed by the turquoise clear waters of the Indian Ocean. Cable Beach was named after the telegraph cable was laid between Broome and Java in 1889.
2. Turquoise Bay Exmouth
Location: Turquoise Bay is located in the Cape Range National Park 60 kilometres south of Exmouth.
Snorkeling in the Ningaloo Reef sound exciting? Well that’s exactly why you’d come here. Dive into the pristine waters of the aptly named ‘Turquoise Bay’ and you’re swimming within a few metres of Ningaloo Reef. Have a go at the popular drift snorkel by swimming out to the reef on the southern end of the beach, then letting the current carry you north over coral gardens to the sand bar. You’ll see colourful coral and plenty of fish – so many species all colours of the rainbow live in and around the reef. You may even spot a whale shark or two!
if you go on a whale shark swim I think Turquoise Bay is Western Australia’s best beach location.
1. Whitehaven Beach
Location: Whitehaven is an isolated beach on the Eastern side of Whitsunday Island, the largest in the Whitsunday group in North Queensland.
Situated in Great Barrier Reef, Whitehaven is only accessable by air or by boat from Airlie beach and Shute Harbour or Hamilton Island. It is 4 miles of pure silica sand and the most amazingly, stunning aqua blue water you’ve ever seen. Whitehaven’s expansive shallows and water patterns make it totally unique and a favourite among photographers. Awarded cleanest beach in 2008 Whitehaven has also been named the Top Eco Friendly Beach as dogs and cigarette smoking are not allowed. What’s so remarkable about Whitehaven is the sand. It’s so incredibly white! It consists of 98% pure silica making it bright white & also it doesn’t retain heat so no matter how hot the day is, you can walk on it without burning the soles of your feet! It’s also really squeaky. Apparently the ‘squeak’ is caused by friction of the layers of silica sand particles rubbing against each other. Polluted sands will not squeak because of foreign matter mixed in with the sand. Therefore, a beach with squeaky sand is a clean beach.
Absolutely beautifully view from above.
If you’ve been to another Aussie beach that you really think should be included in this list, let us know. Maybe we could turn it into our top 20 – of course this might mean we’d have to go and check it out ourselves, bummer!