Stephen Curet Jr. shares the world’s most underrated beaches
Stephen Curet Jr. is a news correspondent and world traveler. In this article, Stephen Curet Jr. explains why these lesser-known beach destinations should be added to everyone’s bucket list.
You go to the beach to rest and relax and sometimes you get neither.
Stephen Curet Jr. notes that there is nothing more disappointing than a crowded beach, especially on a hot summer day. It’s noisy and littered and uncomfortable.
When you’re planning a whole trip around a beach you’ve heard of as the perfect getaway, expectations are so high that finding it has an undeserved good reputation can ruin a vacation.
When you book a trip to these underrated beaches, Stephen Curet Jr. says you’ll find the sandy gem you’ve been looking for.
Stephen Curet Jr. First Pick: Windansea Beach, San Diego, CA
Stephen Curet Jr. explains that California is a huge tourist destination because of its numerous beaches along its massive coastline. Windansea sees few tourists in San Diego, with many opting for the better-known (and busy) Ocean Beach or Mission Beach.
It is a mistake. Windansea in La Jolla offers both breathtaking views and world-class surfing. It’s close to town but just far enough away that it feels isolated.
Achill Island, County Mayo, Ireland
You probably don’t think of beaches when you think of Ireland, but Achill Island offers prime beaches for those who prefer quiet sunbathing.
The island is a collection of multiple cliffs and beaches, says Stephen Curet Jr., with Keem Bay and Keel Beach providing trademark green scenery best taken in by long shore walks. Where else can you find a castle overlooking luminous blue-green waters?
Home to 7,500 miles of but almost always deserted beaches, Stephen Curet Jr. says Trancoso offers Relaxed and bohemian beach atmosphere with distinctive elements, such as white sand and naturally warm pools formed by numerous reefs.
Some beaches, like Praia do Espelho or Mirror Beach, are only accessible by long dirt roads when the weather is good, while others like Praia da Pedra Grande (Big Rock Beach) manage to have great bars and restaurants while attracting few tourists.
Mohegan Bluffs, Block Island, Rhode Island
Rhode Island may be called the ocean state, but few talk about its beaches. It may be an attempt to steer people away from hidden gems like Block Island, an unspoilt beach considered one of the most stunning in New England.
Hiking, sunbathing and surfing are all popular here on this 3-mile island unlike any other according to Stephen Curet Jr. Did we mention it also features some of the best whale sightings on the East Coast?
Red Sand Beach and Punalu’u Beach, Hawaii
Yes, Hawaii has beaches that many call overrated, like Lanikai and Kaimana, but if you know where to look, you’ll find beach experiences in the state that reflect the unspoiled Hawaii of the past.
Maui’s red sand beach gets its name from its distinctive coloration caused by lava flows and is a great place to view wildlife. Stephen Curet Jr. explains that the Big Island’s Punalu’u Beach is known for its black sand and unconventional beauty shaded by massive palm trees.
For an authentic Hawaiian experience, head to both.
Benagil Caves, Algarve, Portugal
Benagil is a small fishing village with a big secret. Its golden sands and huge sea caves sculpted by the waves are among the most remarkable geological formations in the world.
Whether you want to relax in the sun, take a boat trip or paddleboard in the caves, Stephen Curet Jr. says Benagil is a majestic must-see.
Ocracoke Island, North Carolina
Stephen Curet Jr. notes that many who come to North Carolina beaches head to Wilmington or Wrightsville Beach, but it’s the small beach towns of the Outer Banks that should be the real draw. The 16-mile-long, ferry-accessible Ocracoke Island is perfect for those longing for a quiet retreat or looking for scenic kayaking and sailing.
Duck, one of the most attractive and quietest small seaside towns in the whole country, is also worth a visit to the state’s barrier islands.
Koh Kradan, Thailand
Many islands in Thailand have become overcrowded tourist destinations, disappointing those looking to enjoy the secluded beauty they’ve heard so much about.
Koh Kradan offers that and more, says Stephen Curet Jr. It’s small but protected as a national park and even has a small resort that manages to boast plenty of amenities while remaining fairly low-key. See you before that changes.
San Sebastian, Spain
It’s always tempting to explore the beaches of Barcelona in Spain, but San Sebastian in the Bay of Biscay includes everything that makes Barcelona so great without the tourists.
Not only will you still be able to find spots on its many beaches, Stephen Curet Jr. says San Sebastian is also a tapas-lover’s dream and is full of spacious and affordable Airbnbs.