Umbrellas and beach chairs on a beach in Ulcinj Montenegro, one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe.

18 underrated beach destinations in europe

(Last Updated On: June 16, 2021)

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What a hot summer it’s been! After just having come back from a trip to the seaside, I’m already aching to get back by the water, covered in sand. As I daydream about my next beach vacation, I thought I’d compile this list of the best, most underrated beach destinations in Europe (with the help of some fellow travel bloggers, of course!). Is there a destination we’ve missed? Drop it in the comments!

albania

ksamil

underrated beach destination in Europe - Ksamil, Albania

Photo & Contribution:  Alex, Swedish Nomad 

Ksamil is one of the best and most underrated beach destinations in Europe, located in the southern part of the Albanian Riviera. It’s a small town with lush surrounding nature and picturesque bays with white sand and turquoise water.

Just 5 minutes away by boat, one can reach the pristine Ksamili Islands. The islands consist of four small uninhabited islands with even more beautiful beaches and water. In addition to the islands, Ksamil has around five beaches that are located in various bays which you can easily reach on foot from the center.

The town itself is quite charming. It has retained its original ambiance despite having had an influx of tourism in recent years. It was primarily a fishing village before, but these days the locals are depending more and more on tourism.

Ksamil is also a great destination for those who want to enjoy a beach holiday on a budget. The prices are typically 60% compared to similar destinations in Italy and Spain. The easiest way to get here is by ferry from nearby Corfu, in Greece, which has several international flights.

It’s also possible to fly into Tirana, the capital of Albania, and from there take a furgon (mini bus) to get to Sarande or Ksamil.

armenia

lake sevan

underrated beach destination in Europe - lake Sevan, Armenia

Contribution:  Carine & Derek, We Did It Our Way

Welcome to Armenia! A landlocked country with a beautiful beach! In fact, when people think of Armenia, they rarely imagine a beach here, given its arid and mountainous landscape. Luckily, there is a place to escape the city and the heat of the summer – Lake Sevan. 

This lake is famous in Armenia, and it’s one of the best tourist attractions. It’s the largest body of water in the country, making it a popular spot when the temperatures start to rise. But don’t worry, because the water always stays cold!

Many people will take a day trip here from Yerevan because it’s about a 45-minute drive away. Families and friends will gather and have BBQ’s and parties on its shores, soaking in the sun and enjoying quality time with loved ones. 

Beyond hanging out on the beach, there is also a historic monastery at the top of the peninsula. You can also find tons of cafes, restaurants, and bars around the lake. Some parts of the lake are busier than others. Ask the locals where there are quieter spots if you want to have more secluded access to the beach.

bulgaria

varna

Panoramic view of red roofs surrounding the coastal town of Varna, Bulgaria, one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe.

Contribution:  Helga, ShegoWandering

Varna is one of the cutest seaside cities in Bulgaria, with sandy beaches that aren’t super crowded! When it comes to beaches in the region, Sunny Beach remains one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe, though it shouldn’t be!

The city of Varna is really nice, where you can enjoy long walks, with beautiful views, and great dishes! It’s also a really budget friendly destination, which is always a plus. The views from the town towards the sea are really unbelievable, especially in the mornings!

You can easily reach Varna, if you’re heading from the surrounding countries, or from Sofia with car, bus or train. Varna has direct flights to many European cities. But, if you’re coming from further away, you can opt for a connecting flight from Sofia.

While in Varna, you can experience the local produce market, and head to as many beach parties and beach clubs as you wish! Along the seaside, there are plenty of places to dance over the night with friends and a cold cocktail. It’s also a great place for those who are looking for a family trip, as there are many parts of the city and seaside which are calm and relaxing, perfect for a family holiday on the seaside!

croatia

solaris beach, šibenik

Evening sky in Sibenik, Croatia - underrated European beach vacations

Contribution:  Cosette, Kars Travels

Šibenik is a town in between Split and Zadar with some seriously beautiful beaches. Located on the Adriatic coast of Croatia, Šibenik has several underrated beaches that are worth your time. There’s the city beach Banj, Brodarica beach, Jadrija beach and Solaris Beach Resort.

Solaris has 5 kilometers of beaches with lots of pebble beaches and one bay with sand beaches. The sunsets are beautiful here on the Adriatic Sea. You can watch these, sitting on a terrace or from your camping spot right on the beach. But sunset watching is not the only thing there is to do here.

Solaris has a beach club that’s popular for its sweeping views over the sea while floating in the swimming pool. Other than that Solaris has several restaurants, swimming pools, playgrounds, hotels, a campsite and aqua playgrounds in the sea. Best of all, it has an aquapark of over 8000 square meters as well as a wellness center.

If you want a break from the beach, Šibenik has four forts, the St. Jacobs Cathedral, National Park Kornati, Krka waterfalls and Trogrir close by.

Split and Zadar are both reachable by plane. From both cities it’s a 45 minute drive to Šibenik on the A1. The Solaris beach is 4 kilometers from Šibenik. If coming by public transport, take line 6 from Šibenik to Solaris.

denmark

amager strand, copenhagen

Amager Strand in Copenhagen is an underrated beach destination in Europe.  A long row of wind mills seen in the background.

Contribution:  Derek & Mike, Everything Copenhagen

Visitors to Europe don’t often think of Copenhagen as a beach destination. However, the city’s Baltic Sea location means that in the summer, Copenhagen is a beach town. In the short Danish summer, the temperatures can get quite warm. While it’s hard to predict, there is beach weather in Copenhagen and underrated Amager Strand is the place to enjoy it! 

Amager Strand is a short walk from the Copenhagen metro stop of the same name – Amager Strand. Amager Strandpark is perfectly located – you can reach it from the city center using Copenhagen public transportation in under 20 minutes. 

The beach itself is located on a man-made island constructed off of the original beach. Visitors cross three bridges while reaching the shoreline. The bridges cross a lagoon separating the island from the original beach. It shines with fine white sand and gorgeous views, especially at sunset.

The Baltic Sea is cold, even in the peak summer months. Still, the beach is perfect for cooling off and sunbathing on sunny Danish summer days.

england

durdle door, jurassic coast

Durdle Door in England - Underrated EUR beach destination

Photo & Contribution:  Mal, Raw Mal Roams

Durdle Door is one of the most stunning beaches situated on the Jurassic Coast on the southern coast of England. Jurassic Coast is a UNESCO World Heritage site recognized for its exquisite natural beauty. It is also one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe. 

Be prepared for your breath to be taken away by lush green fields and white limestone cliffs towering over a small beach perched at the bottom. And in the middle of the beach in the water, there is a pretty rock formation resembling an arch. 

Spend the day on the beach or hike along the white cliffs for more scenic views. Visit Lulworth Cove, which is a charming, small town within walking distance from Durdle Door Beach. Take a break for lunch overlooking the picturesque bay or take a boat trip to explore more of the gorgeous shore from a different perspective.

The best way to get to Durdle Door from London is by hiring a car and driving there; it should take just over 2.5 hours. Another way is by taking a train from London Waterloo to Lulworth Cove with a change in Wool.

france

côte bleue

Cote Bleue in Southern France as an underrated European beach destination

Photo & Contribution:  Nadine, Le Long Weekend

The Côte Bleue is the South of France’s best-kept secret. Hidden around the bend from Marseille, it often gets overlooked by holidaymakers in favor of the Côte d’Azur or Cassis in the East. However, it’s a favorite spot among locals in the know. 

With its craggy coastline and rugged appearance, you wouldn’t guess at first glance that it’s home to some of the most beautiful beaches in France. Here you’ll find secluded coves tucked up against the cliffs, with water so clear you’ll feel a million miles away from civilization. 

Some of the most picturesque beaches along this coastline, such as Calanque de l’Everine (pictured) and Plage de la Pointe de Figuerolles require a bit of a hike to get to. But if you’re not quite up for that in the height of summer, head along to St Croix beach and you won’t feel like you’re missing out! 

Don’t forget to take your snorkelling gear either, as the underwater world is just as intriguing. 

Trains from Marseille to La Couronne make this area particularly accessible, and it’s also just a quick drive from the southern capital, or its neighbour, Aix-en-Provence.

port vieux

port-vieux, France - one of Europe's underrated beach destinations

Photo & Contribution: Leyla, Offbeat France

France’s Basque country, in the country’s southwestern corner, is known for many things — its delicious food, Basque handmade products, and, of course, its beaches. Biarritz is Europe’s surfing capital and its Grande Plage is as wide and long as its name implies.

But around the corner, as if trying to hide from tourists, is a smaller, cozier beach, with quite a history.

Port Vieux gets its name from its former role as the city’s old port. Here, whalers once docked, until the port was moved to more spacious waters.

Towards the end of the 18th century, Biarritz became hugely popular, appealing to VIPs as Napoleon I and Victor Hugo. By the mid-19th century, Empress Eugenie, Napoleon III’s wife, built a home here, attracting the crowned heads of Europe.

But the waters off the beach of Biarritz can be windy and rough. Napoleon III, who wanted a smaller cove, set his sights on Port Vieux, building up a sea wall and adding a walkway to reach a rock off the coast. That rock is known as the Rocher de la Vierge, or Virgin’s Rock.

The beach at Port Vieux is protected from the winds, and is ringed by restaurants, arcades and a walkway that takes you back into central Biarritz in less than ten minutes.

Looking at the beach from the water, you’ll spot Villa Belza, a sort of neo-medieval extravaganza which some say might be haunted. It has certainly had a number of incarnations… it has been featured in movies, requisitioned by the Nazis during World War II, turned into both a restaurant and a Russian cabaret… and now, it is subdivided into (very expensive) condominiums.

So if the surf waves of Biarritz are too much for you, Port Vieux is right around the corner.

greece

fellos beach, andros

Beach in Andros Greece, an underrated beach in Europe

Contribution:  Maria & Katerina, It’s All Trip To Me

Greece is renowned for its pristine beaches. Andros Island in particular is famous for being home to some of the most spectacular beaches on the Aegean Sea. With so many fantastic beaches in Andros, it’s no wonder that some of them go quite unnoticed and end up, unjustifiably so, highly underrated. 

One such beach is Fellos, which is situated in the western part of the island. Only accessible by car, it is an easy drive that takes less than 15 minutes from Gavrio, the island’s port. 

Fellos is a long beach which is part sandy, part pebbly. It is sheltered from north winds, which usually blow fiercely during the summer months, making it a safe option to swim and play all summer long.

There are no tourist facilities such as umbrellas and sunbeds but there’s more than enough space to bring your own and spend an entire day at one of the most peaceful and authentic beaches in Andros. 

Fellos Beach is ideal for families travelling with young children as well as one of the best beaches in Andros to watch a unique sunset. Last but not least, there’s a very good traditional restaurant within easy walking distance from the beach.

All in all, Fellos Beach may be underrated when compared to other beaches in Andros, but it’s definitely a place you must visit while spending your summer vacation on the island.

ireland

kilmurvey beach, inis mor

Soft white sand on Kilmurvey Beach on the island of Inis Mor in Ireland.

Photo & Contribution: Me! Jade, The Migrant Yogi

The Aran Islands, off the coast of Western Ireland, attract a large number of visitors each year. There are three islands, but most tourists visit the largest of the three, Inis Mor, which is an easy day trip from Galway. The biggest draw of Inis Mor is Dun Aonghasa, a prehistoric hill fort. But en route to Dun Aonghasa lies a small, largely untouched beach with sand as soft as powder and cool Atlantic waters – Kilmurvey Beach.

Making the trek to Dun Aonghasa, by foot or by bicycle, will undoubtedly work up a sweat if it’s a hot summer day.

With only a handful of other people, it’s a quiet place to cool down in the water or rest on one of the large rocks surrounding the perimeter. Or, simply sit to take in the natural beauty that abounds on the island of Inis Mor.

italy

isola bella, sicily

Lone red boat floating on the crystal turquoise waters of Isola Bella in Sicily with  island-like peninsula jutting into the water.

Contribution:  Veronika, Travel Geekery

One of the best places to visit in Sicily is Taormina, thanks in large part to Isola Bella Beach. The prettier of Taormina’s two main beaches, Isola Bella lies just below the town. You can hop on a comfortable cable car ride and get to the sea level within minutes.

Most tourists flock the closer Mazzaro Beach, which becomes crowded constantly. But just a 5-minute walk away lies the picturesque Isola Bella Beach.

This beach is spacious and doesn’t have too many sun umbrellas. It’s common in Italy to crowd the beaches with lidos and restaurants. In most cases, you have to pay to use the beach. Not in the case of Isola Bella. There’s plenty of space to just lie down on a towel on the nice little pebbles.

The sea access is easy and gradual. There are a few large rocks you need to be mindful of, but otherwise the beach is safe, even for children.

A little islet also called Isola Bella is attached to the beach. You can easily walk to it and, for a small fee, discover its jungle-like environment and a rundown house that belonged to a family, which once owned the island.

lido di jesolo, venezia

Waves washing up on the shores of Lido di Jesolo, an Adriatic beach near Venice.

Contribution: Jade, The Migrant Yogi

Most beach-goers in Italy will head to the Amalfi Coast or Puglia for their coastal holiday. And many tourists visiting Venice won’t necessarily think that they’ll be able to also enjoy a seaside excursion. However, in the province of Venezia, you’ll find Lido di Jesolo, a fun beach destination with no shortage of things to do.

Situated on the Adriatic Sea, just over an hour from Venice by bus, Lido di Jesolo has a little something for everyone. In addition to sunbathing, one can enjoy a myriad of water sports (catamaran, windsurfing, kitesurfing, paddleboarding), a little history exploring the ancient walls, beach parties and nightlife, restaurants, shops, bars – you name it.

Many of the waterfront hotels in the area boast epic swimming pool areas if you’ve had enough of the salty Adriatic. Or, relax on the beach with a massage and some fresh coconut sold by vendors wandering around between the chairs.

While Lido di Jesolo may be popular with Italians, it can certainly be considered one of Europe’s underrated beach destinations.

monte turno, sardinia

Monte Turno beach in Costa Rei, Sardinia - an underrated European beach destination.

Photo & Contribution:  Claudia, Strictly Sardinia

A popular summer holiday destination for Italians and Germans, Sardinia is hardly known to the rest of the European market, and usually ignored by non-Europeans. When they eventually make it there, they end up falling in love with it and are amazed at the incredible choice of beaches. 

One of the best is Monte Turno, in the area of Costa Rei and just south of Sant’Elmo. This small cove is a blissful place with fine, white sand, clear shallow waters and rock formations on both sides, making it ideal for snorkeling. There is a kiosk called Iki Beach where you can rent beach equipment and get a bite to eat or a sunset drink. 

The beach is easily reached from Costa Rei – take road SP18 southbound and drive for about 5 km until you see a sign on your left pointing to the beach. Drive slowly, or you’ll miss it! You have to make almost a U turn. 

There is a parking spot – make sure to pay for it as fines are common.

latvia

jurmala

Aerial view of the Jurmala Coast, Latvia, one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe.

Contribution:  Jordan, Inspired by Maps

One of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe has to be Jurmala, Latvia. Jurmala is easily accessible, located around 30 minutes outside of the capital, Riga.  While the Baltic Coast might not be what typically springs to mind when you think of beaches, you can relax and unwind on a glittering coastline flanked by white sand beaches and cute cafes

Should you want to explore further, you can wander around the charming old wooden neighborhoods that back onto the beaches and sand dunes – or if you are feeling a little more indulgent, affordable spa days packages are a popular option.

Back when Latvia was part of the Soviet Union, Jurmala was a favorite holiday-resort spot for high-level Communist Party officials. Many monstrous concrete hotels remain from this era – but they just add to the sense of adventure of a holiday at Jurmala. 

In the past ten years, Jurmala has become a bit of a bolt hole of wealthy Russians looking to hide their fortunes – meaning the area has an intriguing vibe of ‘paradise lost’ mixed with ‘cosmopolitan chic’.

Overall, Jurmala is a quirky beach holiday destination with plenty of space, hot summers, and a variety of attractions both on and off the beach!

liepāja

Signs on the beach in Liepaja, Latvia, an underrated beach destination

Contribution:  Maggie, The World Was Here First

While the Baltic nation of Latvia may not jump to mind when considering a beach holiday, the country boasts some of the most beautiful and pristine beaches in all of Europe. And one of the best beaches in Latvia is located in the lovely seaside town of Liepaja.

The Liepaja beach is an expansive stretch of soft white sand that goes on for miles. The water is shallow and, in the summer months, warm enough to swim in for a short period of time, making it perfect for children.

There are also ample areas where visitors can hire lounges for incredibly affordable daily prices, and there are countless beach bars where sunbathers can grab a drink and a bit to eat.

The beach isn’t the only appeal – there are numerous things to do in Liepaja to keep travelers occupied if the weather turns. Liepaja has been a popular destination for Latvians to visit for ages, but still doesn’t have the international recognition that it truly deserves, earning it a spot on this list of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe.

lithuania

giruliai beach, klaipėda

Stretch of sand in Klaipeda, Lithuania, one of Europe's most underrated beach destinations.

Contribution:  Cazzy, Dream Big, Travel Far

Giruliai beach is located in Klaipėda, Lithuania and it’s one of the most beautiful and unique places to visit in Lithuania, not to mention one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe.

Located only 7 km from Klaipėda city, this beach is easily accessible via car or bus from the city. If visiting by car, you simply drive to the Giruliai beach car park, and it’s only a short walk via an asphalt trail that leads through the dunes to the beach. 

What makes this beach so unique is the fact that it’s got a unique history and a WW2 bunker you can visit on the north side of the beach. This bunker is easily accessible and offers great views of the Baltic Sea, but it’s also a unique experience to go inside a WW2 bunker! 

Giruliai Beach is also a nudist beach, so don’t be alarmed if you see nude bodies. The beach itself has soft sand and makes for a beautiful walk. You can also stop at one of the beach cafes for a drink and a bite to eat. A perfect place to spend a hot day!

montenegro

ulcinj

Beachfront in Montenegro with many umbrellas.  Located in Ulcinj, it is an underrated beach destination in Europe.

Contribution:  Emily, Wander-Lush

The stretch of coast around Ulcinj in far-southern Montenegro is home to the country’s only white-sand beaches. It’s one of the most distinct and beautiful parts of Montenegro. Because of its location, it’s also one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe, all but overlooked by international tourists.

Counted among the oldest settlements on the Adriatic, the city of Ulcinj was founded in the 5th century BC. Today, it’s the centre of Montenegro’s Albanian community and a very popular destination for summer tourists from neighboring Albania and Kosovo (the Albanian border being only a 30-minute drive away).

Ulcinj’s main draw is Small Beach, a short stretch of sand in the city centre. For something more secluded, Valdanos is a popular pebble beach set in a natural cove west of the city. Just off the main beach, you’ll find a plethora of local restaurants, bars and cafes, all serving delicious Albanian cuisine.

Ulcinj isn’t as pristine as some of the beaches on the nearby Albanian Riviera, but the town is oozing with character and culture. The thing that makes this beach so special is that fact that you can swim in the shadow of Ulcinj Castle, one of the oldest urban complexes on the Adriatic. The citadel walls tower above the western end of the beach, providing an impressive backdrop to the rows of woven umbrellas that line the sand during high season.

Ulcinj is a short bus ride away from Podgorica or roughly 1.5 hours from the Bay of Kotor. Alternatively, you can reach Ulcinj from Shkoder in Albania by bus or car in under an hour.

netherlands

texel island

Beach on Texel Island in the Netherlands, an underrated beach destination in Europe.

Contribution:  Maartje, The Orange Backpack

The Dutch island of Texel is one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe. It’s a must-visit for every visit in the Netherlands, though travelers rarely make it to this beautiful island destination. It has the most charming villages, unique landscapes and beautiful beaches.

The Texel island is big enough to have not just one charming village, but a couple of them. If you’re here for the beach, make sure to pick De Koog village as your base. It’s at the west of the island, where the immensely large beach and sand dunes are. It is a popular place to go for the Dutch during the summer.   

But there’s much more to Texel. If you want to experience the Dutch beach and sea even more, book a guided tour to walk on the mudflats during low tide. Or visit Ecomare to spot seals and see the exhibitions and sea aquarium. Another great thing to do on Texel island, is a visit to the Juttersmuseum – which translates into ‘Beachcombers Museum’ – to see all of the oddities that have washed up on the Texel shore.

The island is in the north of the country. Head to Den Helder for the Texel ferry, which is a 75-minute drive from Amsterdam. There’s a good train connection between Amsterdam and Den Helder as well. You can take the bus from the Den Helder train station to bring you on the ferry and all the way to the coastal village De Koog.

zandvoort

Zandvoort beach destination in Netherlands, an underrated vacation spot in Europe.

Contribution:  Samantha, Sam Sees World

When you think of stretching sandy beaches and endless ocean views, the Netherlands is probably not the first place that comes to mind. However, the Netherlands’ location along the ocean has supplied the country with ample stunning beaches, the best being Zandvoort Beach!

Zandvoort is located along the North Sea and the area is lined with a few beaches namely; Bloemendaal-aan-Zee, Zandvoort aan Zee and, and Ijmuiden beach. The main beach is Zandvoort aan Zee, which is a stunning golden sand beach that has ample space to lay out. The best thing about this beach is that it is located just 30 minutes from Amsterdam by train, making it one of the best Amsterdam beaches.

This underrated beach is full of things to do. There are plenty of lovely restaurants lining the beach that are perfect for dining in while admiring the views. There are surfing lessons. And of course a ton of space to layout and suntan. Prepare for a day of fun and amazement at this stunning beach in the Netherlands.

portugal

barrill beach, algarve

'Anchor graveyard' at Barril Beach, Portugal

Contribution:  Cath, Passports & Adventures

Barril Beach, or Praia do Barril, is a small sandy beach located just 8 km from the town of Tavira in the Eastern Algarve. Not only will you find a white, sandy beach with crystal-clear waters at Praia do Barril, you also get the opportunity to see the remnants of a small tuna fishing community at the beach front. The buildings of this bygone industry have been transformed into the beach’s facilities, but it is not that which makes this underrated beach destination in Europe a must-visit.

In front of the old fishermen’s houses lies a scene which will be hard to find elsewhere on Earth – an anchor cemetery. This rusting memorial to the abandoned fishing community located in the sandbanks consists of hundreds of anchors, which were used by the fishing fleet, not lying on the banks, rusting as a result of the elements and sea air. It is a fascinating sight to behold.

Praia do Barril is only accessible via a walk along the marshy banks of the mudflats and salt water lagoons of the Ria Formosa, a natural park which runs for most of the Eastern Algarve coastline, or via the small tourist train that runs from the car park to the beach for a fee of €1.50. The walk is lovely, but kids might prefer the train ride. Just make sure you have money with you!

Praia do Barril is a must-visit, especially if you are visiting Portugal with kids.

romania

vama veche

2 empty beach chairs in Vama Veche, Romania on the Black Sea coast in Romania.  VV is a hippie haven, one of the most underrated European beach destinations.

Photo & Contribution: Jade, The Migrant Yogi

A popular destination for Romania’s youth, Vama Veche is a beach destination largely unknown to the rest of the world. Once known as Romania’s very own hippie haven, Vama Veche is a seaside village on the Black Sea coast, just steps away from the Bulgarian border.

In the 80’s, during the Communist era, Vama Veche was the land of Romania’s free thinkers and artists. It has since grown substantially in popularity among Romanians seeking a (somewhat hedonistic) seaside holiday, but it still remains one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe. That is, if you’re looking for a party.

Dance on the beach all night, and sleep it off the next day in a comfortable șezlong, rented for a fraction of the price of other popular seaside destinations in Western Europe. Old ladies will roam the beach selling fresh berries, and there’s no shortage of good food (and drink) at the surrounding terraces and bars.

Don’t expect to get much rest – this is very much a party-goers destination, where the music never stops and the people never sleep.

If you’re looking for something a little more low-key, head 5km north to Vama’s little sister, 2 Mai.

scotland

coral beach, isle of skye

Sandy stretch of beach on the Isle of Sky in Scotland - Coral Beach

Contribution:  Maja, Away with Maja

One of the best underrated beach destinations in Europe is Coral Beach on the Isle of Skye in Scotland. Scotland may not come to mind when you think of a traditional beach destination, but it really is stunning! 

The Isle of Skye in the Inner Hebrides is home to some of the most dramatic scenery in the UK. Coral Beach is one of the best places to escape the big crowds on Skye and enjoy the views of the coast and sea. 

Coral Beach is located north of Dunvegan. It’s accessed by a single-lane road to Claigan (watch out for potholes), where there is a car park. From there, it’s an easy 20-minute flat walk along the coast to Coral Beach. 

The sandy beach is perfect for relaxing, and there are great views if you climb to the top of the hill. Time your visit right and stay for sunset—watching the sun go down at Coral Beach is so peaceful, and you might just have the beach all to yourself!

spain

papagayo beach, lanzarote

Papagayo Beach in Lanzarote, one of the Canary Islands in Spain.  Also one of Europe's most underrated beach destinations

Photo & Contribution:  Darek, Darek & Gosia

If you are looking for an underrated beach destination in Europe, head out to Papagayo Beach on the island of Lanzarote.

Papagayo Beach is one of the pristine beaches of the Papagayo Peninsula located at the southern tip of Lanzarote, belonging to the Los Ajaches Conservation Area.

This beautiful beach with its fine, white sand is 120 meters long and 15 meters wide. It is considered to be the most beautiful beach in Spain, but still, it’s less crowded than other known beaches. Shimmering in shades of intense turquoise, the calm water is perfect for bathing with cliffs protecting the bay from the wind.

Other stunning beaches of the peninsula are Playa de La Cruz and Playa Mujeres, which you can see on the same day while you are visiting Papagayo Beach.

You can walk or cycle to the beaches from the resort of Playa Blanca. In order to enter the protected area by car, you have to pay a fee of EUR 3. This nominal fee allows you to travel to each of these beaches on a given day.

There is a small bar at Playa Papagayo where you can buy something to eat, drink and use the toilet.

sardinero, santander

Amager Strand, Santander - Cantabria beach.

Contribution:  Derek & Mike, Robe Trotting

One city in Spain that belongs on any bucket list is Santander. While it has so much to offer visitors, this picturesque beach town in Cantabria is largely overlooked. 

Because of its location on the northern coast of Spain, one of the best things to do in Santander is hit the beach. Head to Sardinero for the best of beach life in Santander. The waters can be cooler than the Mediterranean beaches in southern Spain, but the conditions are great for surfing and water sports.

One reason that locals and visitors love Sardinero is that it’s a long stretch of beach. You’ll find that it’s never really packed, but even on the most crowded days there’s plenty of beach to grab a spot on Sardinero.

You can also enjoy an ice cream and a soda at the refreshment area along the beach entry. El Piquío Gardens are another place to stop and are located on the outdrop directly above Sardinero where the two halves of the beach meet. 

This underrated beach destination in Europe is a hidden gem in Northern Spain. When you visit, make sure to enjoy Sardinero Beach.

tenerife north

Tenerife North, Canary Islands, Spain

Photo & Contribution:  Paulina, Paulina on the Road

Among the most underrated beaches in Europe are the North Tenerife Beaches in Spain. 

Tenerife is the largest of all eight islands in the Canary Islands. What all you will not find in Tenerife? It has club scenes, fancy shopping malls, fascinating beaches, gardens, vineyards, and mega restaurants. There is nothing this place does not have.

Being the largest island in the Canaries, Tenerife is famous for having one of the best and diverse beaches in Spain. Each of North Tenerife’s beaches has a unique style, exotic scenery, and spectacular sand stretches. They are all very safe, making it an excellent family destination as well.

There are two main airports in Tenerife to reach the destination. TFS Tenerife South is the arrival spot of international flights while TFN Tenerife North is for internal flights from Southern Europe and Spain. 

However, it’s Tenerife North that is one of the most underrated beach destinations in Europe.

It is surprising to know that some of the beaches in North Tenerife have golden sand while some have volcanic black sand. The well -known beaches worth visiting are Benijo Beach, Santiago beach and Antequera beach in North Tenerife.

Daredevils should also stop at El Teide which is the highest and volcanic peak in Spain and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Some incredible views from the cable car will leave you fully energized for the rest of your day.

What are some of your favorite underrated beach destinations in Europe? Let me know in the comments!

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