Life's a beach they say and we regularly need a dose of rest & relaxation on a beach. We need the beach to unwind and relax, for ‘’me’’ time, for bonding with loved ones, for riding the waves on a surfboard, for diving or snorkeling to discover the rich underwater marine life, for catching up on reading that bestseller, for tanning your skin under the sun or to simply recharge your batteries and get pampered at a luxurious sea facing spa resort. The reasons to head to the beach are endless and an exotic beach holiday is on almost everyone’s bucket list.
Asia has some of the world’s best beaches so whether you are looking for an idyllic, secluded beach holiday or an action packed one, you will find the right beach for your mood in Asia itself. We have put together a selection of Asia best beaches – from gazing out across the clear turquoise waters of the Maldives, or sinking beneath the waves to explore sunken ships in the Andaman waters off the coast of Havelock, the best beaches in Asia offer a variety of vacation ideas that can all be enjoyed under the sun.
White Beach, Boracay (Philippines)
Boracay is a bustling hotspot in Philippines. It is a small tropical island that has been most beach-fanatics’ favorite for years. The richness in terms of natural coastline beauty offered by Boracay is supremely unparalleled; often judged with that of the Caribbean Islands in the Pacific Ocean. Not one but for many reasons, this hot destination in Asia, tops the list wherever it is being displayed.
Before zooming in on the White Beach it is necessary you understand why Boracay is so glorified. The reason is simple; Boracay has multiple attraction avenues in terms of leisure, water sports, and nightlife. Most starred hotels and shacks on the White Beach serve with lounge chairs for those wanting to simply up their tan-quotient while relaxing under the sun (or get back massages from beautiful women appointed for the same). Whereas those with a little adventure streak will obviously enjoy the wide scope of water sports here - like the wind surfing, sailing, snorkeling, diving and jet skiing. All this can go throughout the day, but here comes the dessert: the nightlife scene really resonates to the fullest with happening bars, pubs and clubs extending great food, drink and fun till the dawn.
White Beach is revered for the, literally, white sand shimmered onto it. The white, powered sand against the hitting azure waters make for an ultimate nature’s gift and a beautiful sight to behold. White Beach is major commercial spot for Boracay, with the beach being dissected into 3 parts - Station 1, Station 2 and Station 3 respectively, each station presenting something unique to the visitors. Station 1 is the northern most section of the Beach that is the upscale area, housing most expensive but quality hotels, resorts and spas. Station 2, the central arena of the Beach, is actually the commercial centre for shopping, eating, partying, et al. Little less expensive than Station 1 this part of the White Beach is generally most crowded. Whilst the southern section named Station 3 is the quietest and least inhabited by tourists and residents alike, offering ample peaceful prospects at lower prices.
Boracay truly lives up to the name bestowed on it - Tropical Paradise.
Havelock, Andaman Islands (India)
Havelock Island is quickly becoming popular for the privacy & seclusion it provides as well as the great scuba diving and snorkeling opportunities. To sum up Havelock in one line: welcome to the unspoiled, immaculate side of vacationing in nature’s lap.
Havelock is, literally, untapped you get to experience the proximity to nature firsthand. The Radhanagar Beach has been rated as the best in Asia by the Time (2004). The beach is beautiful with silky white sand, with woods on the backdrop, and turquoise blue waters gently gracing the shoreline. The place has dual offerings in terms of deep diving and snorkeling - a unique combination, thus seen so far. Radhanagar beach has an adjoining lagoon, named as the Blue Lagoon. For commuting, the place has public transport as well as bikes and cabs on hire, but if lucky you could also find an elephant ride along the beach shoreline dropping you off the main road.
Havelock Island doesn’t have many options when it comes to high-end food and lodging, as the place is still developing keeping the eco-friendliness criteria in mind. But you surely can avail moderate facilities here offered by a few hotels.
Lamai Beach, Koh Samui (Thailand)
It's not just for the aromatic and therapeutic massages one often heads to Thailand. The country has equally many more attractions that are sensually-gratifying from pristine landscapes, spectacular beaches, colorful culture, captivating temples to the absolute warmth offered by the locals to the visitors.
Koh Samui is an island off the eastern coastline of southern Thailand. And this is where our next spot in the list is, the Lamai Beach. Lamai Beach is probably the widest strip of sand running across the North-South direction. The more you go towards the South, the more the hot and happening side of the beach is revealed, and as you go further in the north the more the seclusion that will greet you. The southern tip is a populous region to be discovered with many eateries, dining, shopping and drinking options found here to choose from. The northern region is virtually free of any bars, pubs or clubs making it less appealing to many.
This sort of diversion is very well reflected in the topography of the beach as well. The southern part of the shoreline is more befitting for swimming and other water activities, while as you go up north the water becomes shallow with many rocky formations creeping out of the water making it unfit for swimming.
Besides swimming and diving, you can rent a motorbike or a jeep as Lamai beach has many interesting options to explore in the adjoining areas. Fishing villages, the Wat Lamai Temple, Grandpa and Grandma Rocks, the walking street, etc. are some of the few crowd-pullers to mention. Lamai sports great local shopping and souvenir stalls and the other crowd-puller is the local band Ovada Showband, who play an extensive repertoire of song genres.
Similan Islands, Phuket (Thailand)
There is one more ostentatious offering from Thailand in the form of the Similan Islands. These islands have come to existence as a result of the upwellings of hot magma, some 65 million years ago. The Similan Islands (standing for a group of total nine islands) have been touted to be a World Heritage Site for the rich diversity found here in terms of the flora and the fauna. So this is not one of those regular beach destinations that will serve you wine and let you party hard.
Because the waters around the Islands are so deep, the natural marine life was almost unscathed from the catastrophic event of 2004, the Tsunami. Frequently listed in the top 10 beautiful places on earth, the Similan Islands are a rare, magnificent site - the sand is chalk-white, and the dense tropical woods on the islands and an extensive underwater marine life will simply leave you spellbound. Obviously, the Similan Islands are the best diving spots, discovered so far. In one phrase: the Similans are picture perfect paradise.
The Similan Islands are just a National Reserve, and as such have no lodging facilities. You could take a day trip there from Phuket or book with a live-aboard operator who ferry trips to the islands on daily basis. The three major spots from where you could avail the trips are Phuket, Khao Lak and Ranong Province.
Phu Quoc Island (Vietnam)
Away from all the turmoil and hardships Vietnam has faced, there is one place worth calling called the paradise in Vietnam. Phú Quôc is an unsoiled island in Vietnam waiting for you if you are looking at a relaxing beach holiday.
Phú Quôc is densely forested and has more mountainous regions. Yet, the island sees a decent population and animal wildlife in comparison. Previously, the ABC News has credited Phú Quôc with the popular title of The Most Cleanest and Beautiful Beach of World. And frankly, many tout Phú Quôc to be the next Phuket in making. Probably, if the developmental plans get a head start from now, in ten years Phú Quôc will definitely look like what Phuket is today.
Since the site is still developing in many aspects, you won’t find any state-of-the-art water sports or activities. But yes, you could surely have a great time exploring the underwater through scuba-diving and snorkeling. This is a major untapped area. Other than that, the terrestrial prospects are equally fabulous to explore. And the best option to do that is on bicycle or a motorbike, both of which are cheaply and frequently available. Phú Quôc is also majorly distinguished for its exotic offerings in seafood and specifically the fish sauce.
Note that some of the beach vistas extend limitlessly, as far the eyesight can overlook. Plus, you won’t much of crowds either, so the experience is as good as owning the time and space for oneself.
Koh Rong Samloem Island (Cambodia)
Much like Phú Quôc, the petite island of Koh Rung Samloem has been well hidden from human development for many years until now. One of the reasons is that the island is situated far off the coast of Cambodia. It takes nearly 2-2.5 hours of seafaring from the Sihanoukville to reach the island. The island is mostly deserted but you will find small pockets of people.
Koh Rung Samloem is often referred to as the cradle of Cambodian diving. Many tour operators in Sihanoukville organize snorkeling day trips to Koh Rung Samloem. But you can always spend nights too here, minus all the glam-luxury one would find in Phuket or even that in Boracay as the accommodation is basic and comprises mainly guest houses and resort bungalows. Saracen Beach is the area where the resort bungalows and guest houses are mushrooming.
Animal and bird lovers, plus wildlife fanatics will have a great time here exploring the densely inhabited jungles of Koh Rung Samloem. And the same terrestrial wildlife diversity is reflected underwater, with vast species of seahorses and nudibranches below the water surface. Divers and snorkelers are particularly awed by the miniature ecosystems intact here.
Koh Rung Samloem can be defined in these few adjectives: tranquil, unruffled, uncluttered, and untapped.
Sanya, Hainan Island (China)
Very close to Vietnam, Hainan literally means South of the Ocean. The Island is located at the southernmost tip of China and was once considered a dome for the recluse. But that has now changed with Hainan opening its doors to tourists with the Chinese government promoting Hainan as “China’s Hawaii” and being recognized as a Special Economic Zone.
Hainan is a tropical island with moderate humid temperatures of 24-35°C in summers and 19-25°C during the winters. And the recent years have seen heavy tourism development in Hainan, particularly in the Sanya area. Many international chains of hotels and resorts have set up their footprint in this small island, plus the elite of Chinese populous also have raised their second homes here. Hainan is a popular beach destination for Russians, who visit the site frequently.
Focusing particularly on Sanya, it is a rapidly developing destination in terms of tourism. Yalong Bay and the Perfume Bay are the two high-end resort areas here. The island sports a major hilly area in the centre of it, with many beaches laced out on the coasts circling it. The city of Sanya has its own beach destination - Sanya Beach. Although the entire of Hainan is scenic and a reservoir of untapped nature, Sanya beach is still distinctly mentionable for being most convenient to the tourists.
Close to the famous exotic land of Bali, Lombok is our next destination in the list of best beaches in Asia. Lombok is a provincial island of Indonesia and is divided into many regions. Even though the island is so close to Bali, Lombok hasn’t quite spoiled the sands with excess tourism, though Lombok is quickly now on its way to becoming the unspoiled Bali.
Very few island destinations offer you a gamut of natural wonders in one place. Here’s Lombok for you - pristine beaches, magnificent waterfalls, volcanic uphill, tropical temperatures, fewer tourists and more of serenity. What else would one want from a beach holiday?
The unaffected natural surroundings and the strong, rustic way of life here, both have indigenously preserved the breathtaking beachscapes of Lombok. The true essence of Lombok is in its wild landscapes and seascapes which are to be experienced to be believed. Deep sea-diving, snorkeling, fishing charters, surfing are the best way to experience the seacsapes and trekking, biking, cycling is the best way to see the landscapes.
And there is Tanjung A’an, a section of the Kuta Beach that has pepper resembling sand. Big, round, flinty sand grains which completely resemble peppercorns. The best leisure activity to be availed at Tanjung A’an is sipping on fresh coconut milk, normally sold by the villagers on the beach, while watching sun going down.
There is something for the shopaholics too. The village of Sukarare, has aboriginal handicraft made here where shoppers can splurge in the ethnic offerings here. Besides, Lombok is one of the world’s finest producer of pearls.
Islands of Maldives
Maldives happens to be Asia’s paradise beach destination, long revered and long cherished. It is the world’s premier luxury destination with the world’s best hotel and resort chains present. For divers, honeymooners and tanners alike, Maldives is nothing less than heaven itself. White beaches are complimented well by cobalt-blue waters and glistening year round sunshine.
Maldives is particularly different from most of the other place enlisted here. It has been a tourists’ destination for years. Yet that overstuffing hasn’t spoiled much of its natural beauty. Find every advance water sport here, great snorkeling opportunities, top-class resorts, scenic lagoons and everything that an ideal luxury tourist destination should have.
The islands are a geological hotspot for coral reefs. What we see of the beaches is just the surface of those volcanic formations, while under the waters lie the extensive aquatic beauty. That’s why Maldives welcomes a host of tourists and visitors from all corners of the world each year, each season.
About Odyssey Travels
Odyssey Travels is a leading IATA accredited Travel Company, established in 1992. We specialize in planning customized holidays in India and abroad for our clients which includes air ticketing, worldwide hotel reservations, inclusive tours, sightseeing activities, visa assistance & travel insurance services. For further information or to make a booking contact 020-66442929 or visit http://www.odysseytravels.net/