Best Beach Resort Destinations
Ocean views, beachside dining, cooling breeze...what more could you ask for?
Find your next getaway
- Moon Palace Cancun38,529Cancun, Mexico
- Excellence Punta Cana21,655Caribbean
- Grand Hyatt Baha Mar7,165Caribbean
- Hyatt Ziva Cancun12,988Cancun, Mexico
- Moon Palace The Grand - Cancún12,712Cancun, Mexico
- Paradisus Cancun18,925Cancun, Mexico
- Excellence Playa Mujeres26,171Playa Mujeres, Mexico
- Hotel Riu Palace Kukulkan648Cancun, Mexico
Things to know about Beach Resorts
- A beach resort is a vacation destination that offers beachfront accommodations, various amenities, and recreational water activities, all set along a beautiful coastline for guests to enjoy a relaxing and entertaining seaside experience.
- Some of the most popular destinations for beach resorts include the pristine shores of the Maldives, the vibrant coastline of Cancun, Mexico, and the stunning beaches of Bali, Indonesia. These destinations offer the perfect mix of relaxation, adventure, and luxury for all types of travelers.
- Beach resorts often boast unique amenities such as beachfront access, water sport rentals, and on-site dining options offering fresh seafood and tropical cocktails, all designed to enhance your seaside relaxation and enjoyment.
- At beach resorts, you can enjoy a variety of activities such as swimming, sunbathing, beach volleyball, surfing, snorkeling, and indulging in water sports, as well as relaxing at beachfront bars and restaurants.
- Beach resorts are typically located near the beach, but not all of them are positioned directly on the beachfront. Some resorts may be a short walk or drive away from the beach, offering easy access to the shoreline while still providing various amenities and ocean views.
Discover the most popular destinations for the world's beach resorts
Discover the most popular destinations for the world's beach resorts
- MaldivesWant to make your co-workers insanely jealous? Just casually drop "I’m vacationing in the Maldives this year" into conversation, preferably in the dead of winter. Or better yet, go there without mentioning it to anyone—then send them a "Wish you were here!" postcard.
- Puerto RicoPuerto Rico offers the perfect balance of rum-soaked nightlife and tranquil retreat. The Spanish colonial buildings of San Juan set a perfect backdrop for a day of shopping and sightseeing. Hike the massive El Yunque rainforest to see waterfalls, stone towers, and colorful Puerto Rican wildlife. As far as beaches go, it doesn’t get better than the private sands of Isla de Vieques – particularly Mosquito Bay, where by moonlight the water glows blue-green thanks to magical microorganisms.
- Florida KeysStretching 126 miles south toward Cuba, the stunning Keys are a perfect escape. Highlights along the way include Key Largo, Islamorada, Marathon, Big Pine Key and the irrepressible Key West. Get up close with an amazing array of fish while snorkeling, diving or fishing in the warm turquoise waters. Creeks, coral and costumed spectacles are other lures along the way. Highway 1 is a spectacular ribbon tying together the islands and atolls of this paradise between the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic.
- LuzonThe biggest island in the Philippines, Luzon is also one of the most diverse—it’s where mountain peaks and volcanoes meet miles of coastline, and indigenous culture melds with Spanish colonial history. You can relax at the beach in Pagudpud, hike with locals up the Batad Rice Terraces, ride in a horse-drawn carriage in Vigan, and snack on street food and dance the night away in Manila. You’ll need a few days and a bus pass, but you’ll be glad you stayed.
- ArubaAruba is the quintessential Caribbean island, all sun and sea and stretches of powdery white sand. Time will slow to a pleasant crawl as you linger over a tropical cocktail or flutter serenely underwater, where only the parrotfish are in a hurry. The pastel façades of Oranjestad landmarks and shops lend an inviting and playful vibe to the capital city. Enjoy the shade of an Eagle Beach divi tree while the crashing waves of turquoise water create a soothing soundtrack just for you.
- Sanibel IslandMost vacation spots are either relaxing (Tahiti) or family-friendly (Orlando). Sanibel Island, however, is that rare place which is both. Spend a quiet afternoon shell-collecting, or find a hotel with a kids' program so you can enjoy a trip to the spa or a round of golf.
- BahamasLike seashells, no two holidays in the Bahamas are alike. With options as diverse as its 700 islands, it's a place where you can find exactly the getaway you love most. Looking for a family destination, a place for lovers to sneak away, a gambling mecca, a haven for cruise passengers, or a shopper’s world market? The Bahamas is all these… and much more.
- MauiThe Hawaiian island of Maui is a destination for true nature lovers. The ethereal bamboo forest and churning waterfalls in Haleakala National Park can be explored via the Waimoku Falls Trail. Stretch out on warm, golden sands or hit the surf for an unforgettable windsurfing or snorkeling session. Driving the scenic road to Hana along the island’s northeastern shore will be among the most spectacular journeys of your life. Time stands still at the Hawaiian village of Keanae, definitely worth a visit.
- BaliBali is a living postcard, an Indonesian paradise that feels like a fantasy. Soak up the sun on a stretch of fine white sand, or commune with the tropical creatures as you dive along coral ridges or the colorful wreck of a WWII war ship. On shore, the lush jungle shelters stone temples and mischievous monkeys. The “artistic capital” of Ubud is the perfect place to see a cultural dance performance, take a batik or silver-smithing workshop, or invigorate your mind and body in a yoga class.
- MajorcaAttracting visitors from all parts of the world, Majorca is a dreamy island destination in the Mediterranean Sea, just off the south-east coast of Spain. There's something for every taste—beaches and coves, a spectacular mountain range, romantic fishing villages and a rustic countryside dotted with almond and olive groves.
- PhuketThailand’s largest island is an international magnet for beach lovers and serious divers, who enthusiastically submerge themselves in the Andaman Sea. Blue lagoons and salmon sunsets make for a dream-like atmosphere, and indeed, a vacation here can feel a bit surreal. Watersports are the most popular activities, though once you’ve had enough sun there’s still plenty to explore at the island’s aquariums, gardens, and Buddhist temples.
- DominicaWelcome to the Nature Island. Remote, affordable and, as yet, unspoiled, Dominica deserves more than a day's visit from your cruise ship. Spend a week (or more) exploring mountains covered by tropical rainforest, endless hiking trails, some 40 dive sites and black-sand beaches. You'll soon be plotting ways to return every year.
- St. ThomasLike all of the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Thomas has plenty of opportunities to lounge on the beach, splash in the sea, or amp it up with watersports. It also boasts a bountiful duty-free shopping scene – just be prepared to brave the cruise ship crowds. Charlotte Amalie swells with Danish colonial architecture and pirate legend. Shiver ye timbers at Blackbeard’s Castle, then work up an appetite by climbing the historic 99 Steps, constructed from the ballast bricks of 18th century Danish ships.
- MartiniqueThis Gallic toehold in the Caribbean exudes a distinctly French air, enticingly spiced up by West Indian warmth. Local culture and cuisine combine both influences. The stylish isle is dominated by Mount Pelee, which destroyed the city of St. Pierre in 1902. Black sand beaches and rainforests are found in the north, with yet more beautiful sands to the south. Sights include La Pagerie, birthplace of Napoleon's Empress Josephine, and Diamond Rock, a 600-foot pinnacle, once registered as a British warship.
- Key LargoJust a few minutes' drive but a world away from the mainland, Key Largo has been the setting of movies, the home to abundant wildlife and a favorite destination for scuba diving. Lush flora and lively fauna abound in the Dagny Johnson Key Largo Hammock Botanical State Park, John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and Everglades National Park. Underwater, the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary teems with life while the American Crocodile thrives at Crocodile Lake National Wildlife Refuge.
- BermudaDon’t be fooled by Bermuda’s small size; this 21-square-mile Atlantic island is big on history, personality and charm, from pink-sand beaches to historic forts. It’s known for aquatic adventures like shipwreck scuba diving, cliff jumping and deep-sea fishing. On land you’ll find an eclectic island culture of vibrant neighborhoods, brightly colored shorts and delicious fish chowder.
- Amelia IslandAmelia Island is the Florida beach with a Southern accent. A timeless destination known for pristine nature and uncrowded beaches, it offers world-class golf, spas and restaurants, plus a rich history. There's something for everyone—a family vacation, a romantic getaway, a beachside horseback ride or kayak excursion. Events include the Amelia Concours d'Elegance, Pétanque America Open and Isle of 8 Flags Shrimp Festival. It is 30 minutes from JAX International Airport and 90 from St. Augustine.
- FloridaNot just for retirees and theme park enthusiasts, the Sunshine State offers beautiful beaches, pristine diving conditions, and sizzling nightlife. Salsa the night away in a smokin’ hot Miami club, or swing away at one of Kissimmee’s many premium golf courses. An airboat tour of the Everglades is an unforgettable adventure – just look out for alligators! For the risk-averse, a lazy day spent on the soft sands of an Emerald Coast beach is as rejuvenating as a spa treatment.
- CaliforniaCalifornia is a fertile, peaceful place where you’ll find a near-equal balance of vineyards and deserts, beaches and mountains, hippies and traditionalists. Catch an epic wave in Big Sur or swirl a glass in Napa Valley. Be dazzled by the Joshua Tree night sky or just star-gaze in Hollywood. Swish down the slopes of a Tahoe ski resort, or cruise across the Golden Gate Bridge with the top down and the music blasting. Above all, don’t forget to soak up some Golden State sunshine.
- TexasTexas has great beaches for bird watching, boating, and fishing. Plus golf courses, cowboy and high art culture, and a rich history. Bask on the beach and bird watch between golf games before, during, or after spring break in Corpus Christi, Port Aransas, Crystal Beach, or South Padre Island. Explore East Texas from Dallas to Tyler, Texarkana, Jefferson, and Nacogdoches. Enjoy golf and big city life in Dallas or Houston. Visit Galveston's coastal Strand. Tour West Texas and Hill Country from San Antonio, New Braunfels, Austin, and Fredericksburg to Amarillo and El Paso.
- HawaiiFrom volcanic landscapes to hidden waterfalls… active adventures to an energetic nightlife… a holiday on the Hawaiian Islands offers infinite experiences in one destination. Each of the six major islands – Kauai, Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui, and the island of Hawaii – has its own distinct personality, but no matter which ones you choose, you’ll discover endless opportunities for adventure, dining, culture and relaxation.
- VirginiaVirginia can make American history come alive. Visit Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, tour Civil War battlefields, explore the living history museum at Williamsburg… the possibilities are endless (if the kids object, break up the historical sightseeing with a visit to Busch Gardens). Arlington, site of Arlington National Cemetery, is just across the Potomac River from all the major sites in D.C. In addition to beaches and historical attractions, Virginia has plenty to offer outdoor enthusiasts. Active families will love the Blue Ridge Highlands, where hiking, canoeing and tubing are just a few of the activities offered. Couples might enjoy a romantic mountain cabin in Virginia after a day of hiking in Shenandoah National Park.
- MaineMaine has several unique regions, each with its own distinctive culture and activities. With miles of coastline, thousands of lakes, endless rivers and deep forests, visitors can find their perfect vacation spot, whether it's on a sandy beach, at a family campground or walking along Main Street in a bustling city or town. Maine is also known for abundant outdoor recreation opportunities in all four seasons, from swimming and boating in the warmer months to excellent skiing in the winter.
- MichiganThink you need an ocean for a beach? Think again. There are miles and miles of sandy lakefront beaches in Michigan (thanks to the four Great Lakes that border it). The west coast of Michigan has especially nice beaches—try a rental in Muskegon, Grand Haven or Saugatuck. You won’t need a car when visiting Mackinac Island. In fact, they’re not allowed—this lovely Victorian resort town is pedestrian-only.
- AlabamaIf you head for the hills in the state you’ll end up in the northern sector where the inspiring mountains and attractions like the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, the Blue & Gray Museum in Decatur and the Ave Maria Grotto in Cullman represent the diversity of experiences available in the area. In the middle of the state you’ll find Birmingham, an urban center with great attractions and museums, and Tuscaloosa, the quintessential college town and home to the University of Alabama. For beach lovers, sandy destinations like Dauphin Island near Mobile, Gulf Shores and Orange Beach offer beautiful beaches, superb golf, fantastic seafood restaurants and heaping helpings of Southern hospitality. For those who love to chase the white dimpled ball, Alabama offers one of the best golf values anywhere. The Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail, a collection of 468 holes at 11 different sites across the state, features top-notch, championship style courses at affordable rates.
- South CarolinaSouth Carolina has some great beaches along its eastern coast. Among the most notable of these is Myrtle Beach, the hub of the grand strand and the largest resort on the east coast of South Carolina. This silky stretch of white sand is great for water-sports such as sailing and surfing. South Carolina is also regarded as one of the top golfing destinations in America. South Carolina has some notable historic towns which are worth visiting such as Charleston.
- New JerseyWhether you are looking for sun-drenched beaches or outdoor activities in beautiful countryside, New Jersey has plenty to offer. Those who love the great outdoors should head for the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, which runs along the Delaware River for forty miles. Here you can go rock climbing, canoeing, kayaking or fishing, or simply admire the stunning waterfalls. There is a huge range of hiking trails to choose from as well as historic sites to visit. In winter, you can enjoy cross-country skiing near Blue Mountain Lakes, and birdwatchers might be lucky enough to catch sight of bald eagles. If you are looking for a change, visit one of New Jersey's eleven lighthouses that are open to public, such as the one in Cape May. For art and history enthusiasts, New Jersey State Museum in Trenton has historic artifacts and American fine art from the nineteenth century to the present day as well as a Planetarium.
- GeorgiaWhile Atlanta is the anchor and capital of Georgia, you can aim in any direction to find distinctly different regions – from the tail of the Appalachians in the North to the rolling Piedmont hills and on down to the seaside marshes in the East. Atlanta lays claim to the state’s number one attraction – Stone Mountain State Park. They say it best - “Serious fun. Endless adventure.” Just 15 minutes from downtown, the world’s largest exposed granite dome is surrounded by 3,200 acres of natural beauty and stimulating activities for every member of the family – sky rides and hiking paths, laser shows and pedal boats along Stone Mountain Lake. Golfers tee it up, while red foxes dash across the fairways in a state where the Masters Golf Tournament creates revered green-jacket memories every year. It’s a long downhill ride down to historic Savannah, a ‘stone’s throw’ from the Atlantic and a virtual step back in time to Southern architecture and stately squares. St. Simon’s and Jekyll Islands offer barrier island beauty and a wonderful combination of outdoor activities, historic sites and artistic culture. Originally the private winter playground of wealthy northeasterners, Jekyll Island stretches along 10 miles of coastal beaches and inland marshes. Cycling and walking paths wind under moss-laden oaks, and a tour of Millionaire Village takes you back to those Cornelius Vanderbilt and J.P. Morgan days. The kid-friendly Summer Waves Water Park adds man-made fun to natural water sport activities. Coastal golf courses and sophisticated St. Simon’s Island appeal to moms, dads and vacationing couples.
- North CarolinaNorth Carolina has something for everyone, with the highest mountains in the eastern U.S., 300 miles of pristine coastline, quaint towns and vibrant cities. From the mountains to the sea, explore the natural, scenic beauty, discover outdoor adventure or try one of 500 golf courses, including the legendary Pinehurst No. 2. Discover a favorite among 100 wineries and 60 craft breweries, tour historic and cultural treasures, sample farm to table delicacies and get the thrill of motorsports in the "home" of NASCAR.
- ClearwaterHome to some of the best beaches in America, Clearwater is a great family beach destination. Sure, it’s in Florida, but it’s not Giant Rodent Florida (a.k.a. Orlando) or Crazy Spring Break Florida (a.k.a. Fort Lauderdale). Rather, it’s Calm, Old-Fashioned Florida… which is something worth seeing. Oh, and the weather’s outstanding.
- Miami BeachAt the shore in Miami Beach, visitors can swim, surf and jet ski in the warm and crystal-clear Atlantic waters. You can also nap on the white sands, work on a tan or simply watch the beautiful people, especially at South Beach, a favorite of models and celebrities.
- San DiegoSan Diego embodies laid-back California culture, complete with a Boardwalk, surfing communities, and outstanding Mexican food. Breathe in the fresh ocean air at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park, then gobble down a fresh fish taco at a La Jolla seafood joint. The naval aircrafts at the USS Midway Museum will have you standing at attention. A free Sunday concert at the Spreckels Organ Pavilion is the perfect way to unwind after a Saturday night bar-hop in the thumping Gaslamp Quarter.
- Myrtle BeachMyrtle Beach is all at once a spring break destination, golfing destination, retirement community, and family vacation spot. Take in a foot-stomping show at the Carolina Opry, or cheer on your favorite knight at Medieval Times. Mingle with the fishermen of Springmaid Pier, then stop for ice cream along the boardwalk. Shop and dine at one of the area’s many outdoor entertainment complexes, or simply explore the many beaches of the Grand Strand – all with a personality of their own.
- LagosThere is rich and beautiful history within Lagos’ 14th century walls, from its fortress to picturesque churches like Medieval São João Hermitage and the 17th-century São Sebastião. But that’s all appetizer. People come here for a main-course coastal buffet featuring more than a half-dozen beautiful beaches. Quiet sandy coves are sandwiched between dramatic cliffs. The sandy 2.5-mile stretch of Meia Praia caters to every water sport imaginable. And when you’ve had your fill, you can digest your day with some of the best nightlife in the Algarve region.
- Daytona BeachEscape to Daytona Beach, and discover a destination where new adventures for all ages are around every corner — whether you’re strolling along 23 miles of uncrowded, white-sand beaches or reeling in a new discovery at the Main Street Pier. Greet the morning by soaking in the salt air on a paddleboard tour or by rounding the famed Daytona Beach International Speedway at top speed. Then get a taste of local culture at the Riverfront Shops and the fantastic Museum of Arts & Sciences.
- San JuanThe festive city of San Juan is the perfect place to experience true Puerto Rican culture. Get to know its roots by exploring the vibrant neighborhood of El Viejo San Juan (Old San Juan), which consists mostly of Spanish colonial buildings. Flesh out your self-guided history lesson with a visit to El Castillo San Felipe del Morro, a 16th century citadel that’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Then reward yourself with a cooling dip at Luquillo or Carolina Beach, then a tasty tour of the Bacardi rum plant.
- Cocoa BeachLocated on Florida's Space Coast, Cocoa Beach offers a sunny shoreline with activities such as parasailing, casino cruises and the Brevard Zoo. It's the closest beach to Orlando, so you can enjoy Orlando's attractions and also get to relax on the coast of Florida. Port Canaveral , the state's fastest growing port, is a popular departure point for Caribbean cruises.
- BarcelonaBarcelona feels a bit surreal – appropriate, since Salvador Dali spent time here and Spanish Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí designed several of the city’s buildings. Stepping into Gaudí’s Church of the Sacred Family is a bit like falling through the looking glass - a journey that you can continue with a visit to Park Güell. Sip sangria at a sidewalk café in Las Ramblas while watching flamboyant street performers, then create your own moveable feast by floating from tapas bar to tapas bar.
- SarasotaWhat kind of beachgoer are you? Chances are, you’ll find something in the Sarasota area that appeals to you. Soft sand, fishing piers, shells—you can find it around here. Just don’t go looking for a nude beach—that’s the one thing they don’t have.
- Virginia BeachVirginia Beach has all the elements of a classic seaside resort: gorgeous beaches, a lively boardwalk, plenty of restaurants and nightspots, and amusement rides sure to appeal to kids. Sports enthusiasts will find celebrated golf courses in Virginia Beach and the surrounding area, as well as sea kayaking and miles of hiking trails. Many believe Virginia Beach is at its best in the off-season, when the town is less crowded but the weather is still mild.
- Palm BeachPalm Beach has long lured America's big name social elite, from the Kennedys to the Pulitzers to the Trumps. If you don't have the Jaguar, catch a Palm Tram around the city. Opulent extravagance is the order of the day. But if you can take your eyes off the glittering procession of socialites and the prices at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago Spa and in Worth Avenue stores, there are plenty of other sights to be seen. Don't miss Henry Morrison Flagler Museum or the hopping nightlife on Clematis Street.
- Pensacola Beach“Life’s a Beach” all right on Pensacola Beach where building sandcastles, body surfing and beachcombing are popular pastimes. Away from the sands, there are several don’t miss sights for the entire family, including the National Aviation Museum, which features 150 vintage aircraft, flight simulators and an IMAX Theatre, Fort Pickens, an historic military fort built in 1829, and the Pensacola Lighthouse, the oldest lighthouse on the Gulf Coast and also the tallest, standing 151 feet tall on a 40 foot bluff. To immerse yourself in the history of Pensacola, stroll the historic village, a pedestrian-friendly area with furnished historic homes, unique museums and the Colonial Archeological Trail. For the white dimpled ball set, try teeing up at Lost Key Golf Club, a target golf set up designed by Arnold Palmer and Marcus Pointe Golf club, an Earl Stone design. Don’t forget, there’s also great deep-sea fishing and other water activities like sailing, kayaking, diving and snorkeling to be actively pursued on Pensacola Beach.
- Los AngelesHollywood beckons to tourists who long for a brush with Tinseltown glamor. Tour movie studios, slip your hands into the famous prints at the TCL Chinese Theatre, or indulge in a celeb sighting at one of LA’s white-hot nightspots. Spot your favorite star while shopping at The Grove, or forget all about the famous eye candy as you take in the iconic artwork at The Getty Center. For a different type of star-gazing, peek through the telescopes at the Griffith Observatory.
- TulumMayan ruins tower over the sea in Tulum. The formerly walled city was one of the last to be built by the Mayans, and its archaeological sites are incredibly well preserved. Take a break from the beach to visit El Castillo, the Temple of the Frescoes, and the Temple of the Descending God. Explore an underground river under a canopy of stalactites in the sacred caverns of LabnaHa Eco Park, or dive into Cenote Dos Ojos to snorkel inside of caves in the middle of a forest.
- Costa RicaEmbraced by the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, Costa Rica has been attracting eco-tourists for decades, thanks to rich biodiversity and abundant wildlife. Here you’ll find splendid beaches that spill into sparkling blue waters, peaceful conservation areas, and outstanding adventure sports. Get in touch with ancient civilizations at the National Museum or tiptoe to the edge of a crater at Poás Volcano National Park. Surfers will dig the unparalleled conditions of the Guanacaste province.
- ThailandThe lush jungles of Thailand promise adventure, while the serene beaches are the perfect place to splash in the sun. The Similan Islands feature some of the best dive sites in the world, where barracuda dart amid coral reefs and rock formations. Party in the nightclubs of Patong or linger over mango sticky rice at the famous Bangkok family restaurant Kao Neoo Korpanich. The city of Chiang Mai is an absolute must-visit; a mosaic of ancient temples, massage parlors, music venues, and markets.
- United StatesSpanning 2,800 miles (4,506 kilometers) from east to west, the US is a vast patchwork of landscapes and metropolises. From Arizona’s red-rocked canyons and California’s coastal beaches to New York’s big city and Virginia’s storied past, it covers any topic any traveler could want or need.
- VietnamThe jungles and monsoon forests of Vietnam are diverse ecosystems that are alive with unique wildlife. Trekking is a popular activity here, particularly the mountains of Sapa and the primeval landscape of Cuc Phuong National Park. For a more urban escape, take a guided food tour of Ho Chi Minh City, making sure to squeeze in visits to the historic Hoi Truong Thong Nhat palace and the intricately adorned Emperor Jade Pagoda.
- MexicoWith 26 UNESCO-declared world heritage sites, charming colonial towns and dozens of thrilling cities, there's plenty to explore in this country of 109 million. Outside the cities, stunning Pacific beaches, stark deserts, mangrove swamps and swimming holes provide all you need for a relaxing, romantic or adventurous vacation. Captivating, cosmopolitan and chaotic Mexico City and the 32 states offer an incredible abundance of experiences, from laid-back and leisurely to upbeat to adrenalin-charging.
- Sri LankaKnown by a flotilla of aliases, the Resplendent Isle is one of gorgeous beaches, tea plantations and ancient cities. Scuba dive, visit an elephant orphanage and a lagoon of singing fish, explore dense jungle, shrines and temples. Situated just 20 miles off India, the island formerly known as Ceylon is home to 20 million people and eight World Heritage sites. The country's long, brutal civil war ended in May, 2009, bringing peace, stability and a revival of tourism.
- JapanIn the Land of the Rising Sun, ancient temples sit alongside neon wonderlands and shinto shrines offer pockets of peace amid metropolises. Add tea ceremonies, snow monkeys, sushi, kimonos, and karaoke to the mix, and you’ve got one of the world’s most fascinating countries.
- BelizeAccording to famed diver Jacques Cousteau, the Great Blue Hole of Belize is one of the most spectacular dive sites on earth. The crystal-clear sapphire waters are home to colorful tropical fish and several species of reef sharks – ideal for brave divers who love to get up close and personal with sea life. On dry ground, diverse rainforests, mangrove swamps, and Mayan ruins are perfect for exploration. The beaches of Belize are sunny and tranquil spots for a day of relaxation.
- ItalyFrom the silvery crests of the Alps to the sparkling Mediterranean Sea, Italy’s beauty is unparalleled. A visit could mean marveling at the Colosseum after a tender plate of pasta, or drifting lazily down a canal, your belly full of local Sangiovese. Explore Tuscan vineyards and olive groves or drool over boutiques in fashionable Milan. Look for mermaids from the cliffs of Sorrento or nibble on Parma’s famous cheese and prosciutto. Anywhere you choose, the country will captivate you.
- United Arab EmiratesNomadic tribal heritage and modern society co-exist in the UAE, a federation of seven emirates at the southeastern edge of the Arabian Peninsula. Look beyond the desert that consumes four-fifths of its area and you'll find UAE capital Abu Dhabi, an oil-rich city of skyscrapers, parks and malls, and Dubai, with its split personality of luxury resorts and covered marketplaces, upscale boutiques and local artisans. For a break from urban sprawl, journey over rolling red sand dunes into the Hatta Mountains, where the 200-year-old Sharia Mosque sits amid 30 restored buildings of sandalwood and mud.
- PeruFrom the remoteness of Peru’s Andes Mountains to the unexplored territories of its Amazon rain forest, the country holds a mysticism all its own. It’s the motherland of the Inca civilization and home to Machu Picchu, alpaca products, and more than 4,000 types of native potatoes.
- MalaysiaMalaysia is a beautifully complex vacation destination, a land where ancient rainforests give way to multicultural city life. Capital city Kuala Lumpur is visually defined by the iconic Petronas Twin Towers, while in charming Melaka the vibe is more quaint and historical. Many of the country’s national parks offer opportunities for fantastic whitewater rafting, and the exclusive Sipadan dive site (off the east coast of Borneo) is among the best in the world.
- CambodiaSet your own pace by cycling through Khmer ruins at Angkor Wat or pedaling the banks of the mighty Mekong. Trek off the beaten path on eco-adventures through the Cardamom Mountains, southern tropical islands or crater lakes of the remote northeast. Add urban adventure and hire a "motodop" taxi in Siem Reap.
- PhilippinesWith more than 7,000 islands consisting of rice paddies, volcanos, mega-metropolises, world-class surf spots, and endemic wildlife, the Philippines is one of the most dazzling and diverse countries in all of Asia. Not to mention, it’s home to some of the world’s best beaches, too.
Popular Continents and Regions
- EuropeFrom the mighty fjords in the north to the ancient Greek ruins in the south, all the way to the volcanic Azores in the west and the monumental architecture in the east, Europe's unique blend of history, landscapes, and cultures must be seen to be believed.
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