5 Beaches with a difference… The most colourful beaches in the world

Now we all have that image in our minds of crystal clear turquoise waters ebbing gently on beautiful white powdery sand… It’s the stuff of day dreams and fantasies. Being addicted to sunshine and coastal living I’ve seen my fair share of golden beaches but if you want something different you might like these…

Punalu’u black sand beach, Hawaii


Black sand beaches can be found on volcanic islands such as Hawaii or Lanzarote, a Spanish island in the Mediterranean. This beach, I visited in Hawaii, was about 2 hours drive south of Hilo and we found it easily reading the signs and the rental cars map. Unfortunately the weather wasn’t amazing that day but the beach was lovely. An entire beach covered in black sand with huge columns of trees swaying violently along the edge of the sand created quite the dramatic effect.There’s little more than a shop here so bring whatever you need with you for a day trip.  Also, another tourist attraction here is the turtles. They were swimming right at the waters edge and in the middle of the beach had a little nest where they laid their eggs. Pretty awesome 🙂

Papakolea Green sand beach, Hawaii


It’s quite a hike to get to this beach (2.6miles to be exact)! Locals have copped on to the fact that some visitors are on the lazier side (me!) and offer rides on the back of their trucks from the make shift car park to the top of the cliff where you want down to the beach. I think they charge $15-20 per person return. Alas, I wasn’t alone and my German compadre was more than happy for us to walk the whole way to the beach! So, as I longingly gazed as each truck drove by, we progressed through fields, sand and mud to get to our destination. To the right was a beautiful horizon and it had become a habit of mine to stare out into the ocean as I had successfully seen many whales breach and this time did not fail. Watching as a family of three or four whales swim by,far in the distance, makes my heart slip every time. After about 45 minutes we arrived at the top of the cliff and began to descend the steep slope to greener pastures! We were greeted by a handful of people who were chilling out on the beach but in general the beach was quiet. After a bit of splashing about in the water and taking some photos it was time to head back to the car as we still had quite a drive to go before evening fell. It’s illegal to take the green sand with you as it is considered rare so be careful if you do go there! Interestingly enough, a few weeks later I ended up on a private beach, accessible only by sea, and there was also some green sand there as well as white, brown, red and purple. The most interesting sand combination I’d ever seen!


Rainbow beach, Australia


During my travels down the east coast of Australia we stopped at Rainbow Beach for a few nights. It may have just initially been a stopover with the intention of sailing out to Fraser Island from here, however, this small town boosts a gorgeous beach that is said to be made from 72 different coloured sands, hence the name!
Perfect for a day of relaxing in the endless Sunshine Coast.

Siesta Key, Florida, USA


Everyone likes to play sometimes and Siesta Key is the perfect playground. The famous white sand here is so soft and powdery it actually feels like snow. This is because it is 99% silica in its content. Every year they hold world famous sand building competition in May and people of every age come from all over the globe to participate in this fun in the sun. http://www.escape-to-sarasota.com/siesta-sand-sculpture-contest.html. I’m not generally a fan of sand and the way it gets in all the awkward crevices but this soft sand felt so amazing I couldn’t help myself from making some sand angels lol!

Pink Sand Beach, Bermuda


Located in Bermuda, this beach indeed a pinky colour. It’s pink hue is as a result of tiny red organisms living under the coral reef and when they die, they, along with shell and coral particles, are corroded and abraded into tiny sand particles.


These are my favourite beaches with a difference. Please feel to leave a comment below to tell me about an unusual beach you’ve been to. Otherwise you can just use the poll to vote for your favourite! Maybe I should trade in my flip flops for  Dorothy’s shoes… Simply click your heels together… I wish 🙂





7 days to see… Florida

Day 1
Starting location: Orlando airport
End destination: Orlando
Main attractions along the way: Orlando

I really wanted to rent a vintage VW bus for the week but they were all booked out for Easter. Check them out http://www.floridavwrentals.com/
I would advise booking your rental car online. Try these sites.

We ended up renting a car from advantage and they lived up to their name and took advantage of us. Beware of unnecessary upgrades and insurance costs. You should not have to pay anymore than the price given on your booking.
Begin your trip with a jaunt into the city. It is best explored on foot so park your car on a side street and off you go. We discovered a very cute Mexican themed street where we lunched on quesadillas and enchiladas.
Our villa was booked on Florida Vacation Villas on http://www.hotels.com.
Thanks to technology we followed google maps the whole way to the house. I would happily have moved in forever. It had a swimming pool, outdoor Jacuzzi, 6 bedrooms and a games room in the garage. It even had an air hockey table, which I love!


Day 2 – 3
Starting location: Orlando
End destination: Orlando
Main attractions along the way: Disneyland

Tickets can be bought in stores along the road offering specials. Otherwise you can buy packages online. https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/tickets/


Day 4
Starting location: Orlando
End destination: St. Petersburg
Main attractions along the way: Tampa, Clearwater Beach, Madeira Beach, Treasure Island Beach

Just a two hour drive from Orlando, is the large, popular tourist spot that is Clearwater Beach. It was very busy but we found a nice spot by the water to enjoy a few hours of sunbathing and swimming. We stopped at several beaches enroute to St. Pete’s, some of which I have mentioned above. It seemed like every stop had miles of gorgeous white sandy beaches, each more beautiful than the next. We arrived at St. Pete Beach in time to observe the gorgeous sunset, and listened to the waves crash as day became night.

If you have extra days, optional stops
* Honeymoon Island
* Caladesi Island


Day 5
Starting location: St. Petersburg
End destination: Siesta Keys
Main attractions along the way: Anna Maria, Holmes Beach, Bradenton Beach, Longboat Key Beach, Sarasota Island

Enjoy the incredible views of the Gulf and tiny beaches as you cross the famous 5.5 mile Sunshine Skywalk Bridge. Taking the scenic coastal route, you will have lots of opportunities to stop beautiful beaches along the way, some of which I mentioned above. Long bridges connect each of the islands, and the drive is very enjoyable across the Gulf of Mexico. A good place to stop for lunch is Sarasota. We chose to picnic in Sarasota Island Park and Marina and enjoyed the sunshine and the artistic displays in the park. Next, we took Ocean Blvd. and Beach Road to Siesta Keys, which apparently was awarded No. 1 beach in 2011. It certainly deserved its title, as this massive beach not only had volleyball nets, picnic tables and loud dance music, it also had the most unbelievably soft sand I’d ever felt ( I even rolled around in it and I’m not the fondest of sand generally!). Once a year, this beach holds world sand building competitions where people come from all over the globe to produce some marvelous sand creations. Every Sunday there is a drum circle held on the beach at sunset and as luck would have it, we were there on a Sunday (of course!), and got to observe people of all ages dancing, playing music and even hula hoop dancing. Coincidently, I had bought a hula hoop earlier that day, but my skills are atrocious so I didn’t partake, but promised myself to practice before next time!


Day 6
Starting location: Siesta Keys
End destination: Fort Myers
Main attractions along the way: Venice Beach, Sanibel Island, Tarpon Bay, Lighthouse Beach, Bowman’s Beach

The first stop of the day is Venice Beach. It is a large white sandy beach and was very quiet when we were there. After a lovely morning walk, we headed for Sanibel Island which is famous for its shell beaches. I have never seen anything like them before. There are shells of all shapes and sizes and if you make a quick stop at the touristy information office, they will give you plenty of informative leaflets so you can tell what type of shells they are. Shells are a great souvenirs to bring home.

There are many activities to choose from on this island especially water sports but I would recommend the Thriller Dolphin cruise. It leaves from Tarpon Bay and is a 90 mile exhilarating ride around the two islands while dolphins chase your speed boat. In the evening you have many beaches to choose from on the island. We drove to Lighthouse Island, which was another beautiful strip of white sand lined with the warm, turquoise waters of the Gulf of Mexico. It was here, one of my life dreams came true. As I was out swimming, two young dolphins swam in close beside me. I’ll admit I got a little scared as I recalled (falsely I’m sure) an article about being bitten by dolphins ( I watch too many movies!). Despite this, it was a magical moment for me as I watched them play for a few minutes before gliding off into deeper waters. To top a wonderful day off, watch the sunset at Bowman’s Beach.

If you have extra days, optional stops:
* Captiva Islands
* Cayo Costa


Day 7
Starting location: Fort Myers
End destination: Miami airport
Main attractions along the way: Naples Beach

This drive was less than 3 hours so we had time to stop for some last minute sun at Naples Beach before heading to the airport. There is a state park here for some nice walks.

If you have extra days, optional stops:
* Miami
* The Everglades