Best Beaches in the Mediterranean – Travelers who love the sights, sounds and smells of the beautiful Mediterranean Sea should consider taking a cruise with stops at multiple destinations.
There are several ways to enjoy the best beaches in the Mediterranean.
Best beaches in the Mediterranean
But how do you decide which highlights to visit?
We’ve put together a list of the most idyllic hot spots so you can take in all the highlights of this wondrously diverse area.
You may choose to cruise, go by yacht, or fly directing to these locations.
With thousands of islands, making a stop in Greece can be tricky if you don’t know where to start.
Try Crete, which is the largest Greek island by area and has mile-upon-mile of picture-perfect coastline.
Head over to the eastern side of Crete to catch a boat to the beautiful untouched beach of Nissos Chrissi.
Here you can spend the day lazing on the white sands and snorkeling over the interesting seabed in the bay.
Nissos Chrissi is known as the Golden Island for good reason, as the colorful volcanic rocks are covered in fine sand and pretty purple shells.
If you feel like you’ve had too much sun, pack up a picnic and stroll into the cool cedar forest that coats the island.
Over on the west side, see if you can find the 13th century chapel of Agios Nikolaos and the Minoan ruins that still punctuate the landscape
Sailboats leave from the port at Lerapetra every morning and come back to pick up their sun-soaked passengers at 5pm.
The gorgeous island of Gozo is situated to the south of Sicily and is regularly referred to by experts as one of the best diving locations the Mediterranean has to offer.
With numerous dive schools around the island, along with crystal-clear waters, interesting caves and unusual marine life to spot, beginners through to PADI-qualified elites can enjoy the scores of dive sites on Gozo’s coast.
If you prefer to stay on dry(ish) land, check out Ramla Bay on the north side of the island.
Relax on the red-tinged sand warmed by the heat of the sun or walk up the grassy hills framing the beach if you fancy taking advantage of the cool breezes blowing off the Med.
The island of Corsica is a great choice for cruise passengers, with its clean beaches, palm tree-lined boulevards and temperatures of 30C+ during the summer months.
On the south-west of the island is Cappiciolo, a wonderful stretch of sand that is peppered with secluded coves – perfect for exploring.
There are a couple of restaurants to dine in the middle of the day and a few hidden gems if you care to scramble down the rocky banks.
Thrill-seekers might like to pay a visit to Sant’Amanza in the south of Corsica to try out the best windsurfing conditions.
This sandy beach is popular with locals and tourists alike and is about six kilometers from the town of Bonifacio.
Mediterranean best seen by yacht
There’s no better way to experience the Mediterranean Sea than by yacht.
Since ancient times, sailors have navigated its warm waters and enjoyed breathtaking sunsets over its many coastlines and islands.
If you are fortunate enough to be able to visit, it will be an unforgettable experience.
Here’s why the Mediterranean is best seen by yacht and what you will see while you are there.
Today, modern villas and ancient cities cling to cliffs side-by-side, and it’s possible to drop anchor in a quiet port or in a bustling, world-class marina.
Here are four must-see sights while yachting in the Mediterranean.
John Steinbeck loved Positano, one of the Amalfi Coast’s most picturesque places, raving that “It is a dream place that isn’t quite real when you are there and becomes becomingly real after you have gone.”
The same could be said about any of the Amalfi Coast’s towns, from quiet Ravello, to charming Sorrento with its abundance of limoncello.
The Isle of Capri, where ancient Roman emperors retired, is still a playground for the rich and powerful.
The cities that make up the Côte d’Azur, or French Riviera, conjure up glamour.
The first is St. Tropez, which is synonymous with sun and summer madness.
The second, Cannes, is famous for its film festival and celebrity-watching.
Third is Monaco, which makes up for its tiny size with outrageous luxury hotels and casinos.
Despite the glitz and paparazzi in the big resort towns, it’s easy to find quiet moorage on a Mediterranean Yacht Charter in old port towns, to stroll down cobblestone streets, and to watch older men playing pétanque and drinking pastis.
You will definitely get a real feel for the people who live there.
It’s impossible to go wrong island-hopping through Greece. From the old port of Mykonos to famous Santorini, with its distinctive white architecture set against the bluest of seas, it’s beautiful.
There is no shortage of harbors, and the usually calm waters make for smooth sailing.
The Aegean Sea borders the Turkish coast as well, and the port town of Bodrum, with its iconic castle, is always worth a visit.
While the red-roofed city of Dubrovnik still bears scars from the Yugoslav Wars, it is regaining its well-deserved popularity as a tourist destination.
This coastline has something for everyone, including several islands: sophisticated Hvar, sporty Brac, verdant Korcula, and wild Vis.
It is wonderful to be able to travel, and if it’s on a yacht in the Mediterranean, that is even better.
Traveling the Mediterranean
These best beaches in the Mediterranean will captivate you and will encourage you to visit again and again.
Wherever you go, be sure to bring your passport and other documents, safeguard your valuables, and focus on bringing travel essentials, like layering pieces, toiletries, medications, and a money belt.
You will enjoy where you are if you are not bogged down with too many of your belongings.
Gems on the Mediterranean Coast
The Mediterranean is a beautiful place to visit at any time of year – the food, the cultures, the beaches and the quaint little towns make it one of the most romantic regions in Europe to visit, whatever your age and whatever your circumstances.
Even if you happen to be travelling with a group of friends, a trip to the Mediterranean coast will make you feel as though you’re starring in the most romantic movie of all time.
There are plenty of wonderful places to choose from, and a number of these are listed below in more detail, but the Mediterranean is also the perfect destination to experience what it’s like to go on a cruise.
If you’ve ever wanted to travel on a cruise ship and take in the sites of a number of different destinations in one go, try a Mediterranean cruise.
Be Charmed In Cassis, France
Italy is not the only spot in the Mediterranean with a riviera worth visiting – the French Riviera is just as beautiful and if you’re looking for a holiday to help you relax and switch off from the daily stresses of the year, Cassis is the perfect spot.
France’s riviera used to be home to a number of tiny, fishing villages.
Now it’s a popular, but intimate, beach destination.
Having said that, the old village streets and buildings of Cassis are well-preserved, which means it hasn’t lost any of its rustic 16th century charm and unlike Nice or Saint Tropez, it is possible to escape the crowds even during the high season.
If you do plan on visiting Cassis this year, make sure you take a boat tour around the Calanques (a popular stretch along the coastline, famous for its deep inlets) or inject a little bit of action into your visit by opting for a kayaking tour of the Calanques instead.
You’ll get plenty of time to throw yourself into the water in-between visiting the different sites on the itinerary and you’ll benefit from some enjoyable “active time” on your holiday aswell.
Lay back & Relax In Gozo, Malta
Gozo inspires peace and quiet, but it’s far from being a lazy beach resort with nothing going on.
Victoria is a great place to go wandering around in at night.
There’s always some kind of activity to enjoy and the “go-with-the-flow” attitude is just the kind of medicine needed if you ordinarily live in a place which demands order, deadlines and routine.
Gozo might be geographically close to the Maltese mainland, but the traditions, accents, lifestyles and dialects of the people living on the island are very different from those on the mainland.
The wonderful thing about Gozo is that it really tempts you to do things you wouldn’t normally do without even realizing that you’ve been cajoled into experimenting.
There’s always a village “fiesta” or party going on during the high season that you’ll be able to join in with, whether travelling alone, with friends, with your partner or with the whole family.
Rabbit is a popular choice on the menu in most restaurants, which isn’t something you tend to see on many menus these days, and mountain bike rides around the island are really refreshing.
You’ll come back a party-loving, rabbit-eating, mountain bike champion and your friends won’t recognize you!
Visit All Of Them In One Trip
If you can’t decide between the many beautiful places in the Mediterranean, then don’t – book yourself onto a Mediterranean cruise instead and spend a week or two visiting as many spots on the Mediterranean map as possible. ‘
The best thing about living the dream on a Mediterranean cruise is that, if your live in the UK, you’ll have the option of starting your trip direct from the port at Southampton.
There are lots of cruise companies who offer great deals on Mediterranean cruises from Southampton’s port and, especially when travelling with small children, the convenience of this arrangement can be a real lifesaver.
Cyprus – A unique vacation experience
Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean, and although it is a part of Europe, it retains a distinctly Eastern feel.
Prior conflicts between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots mean the island is technically divided into two parts, but hostilities have been over for a long time now, and the country’s past events are no deterrent to the tourists that flood the main cities of Agia Napa and Pafos.
Cyprus offers a diverse holiday experience including culture, diving, golf, and more.
Cyprus Rich in Religion
The Kykkos Monastery is a beautiful Orthodox Monastery, and pilgrims travel from all over the world to see its icons and attend a morning mass.
Even non-religious visitors will appreciate the stunning Byzantine artwork and architecture, and the sound of its bells ringing out across the wooded valleys.
Outside of Pafos is the UNESCO World Heritage Site of The Tombs of the Kings, which gives tourists the opportunity to walk through ancient, plundered tombs, and learn about Aphrodite’s famed birthplace.
Dive into Cyprus History
The Zenobia Wreck, known simply as “The Zen” in the diving community, is a different kind of ruin: a large ferry that sunk off the coast of Cyprus in 1980 became one of the world’s top wrecks to dive.
Experienced divers can explore inside the wreck, while beginners can dive along the outside.
Those who want to experience diving around Cyprus but aren’t certified can visit a Dive-In location in Larnaka, Lemesos, or Pafos to take a PADI course at a reasonable rate.
And those who want a completely unique experience can try undersea walking.
With a specially-designed helmet that provides fresh air, visitors can walk on the bottom of the sea without the hassle of a regulator or snorkel!
Grab Your Clubs for Golfing in Cyprus
The rugged Cyprus landscape, set against the Mediterranean Sea, makes a memorable backdrop for a great golf holiday.
Golfing in Cyprus
Elea Golf Club has a course designed by legendary player Nick Faldo — a must for any serious golfer.
Listen to the Music
Visitors can immerse themselves in local culture at the Ultimate Music Festival, featuring Cypriot rock bands, or at the Peasant Festival, where local food and wine are on display, followed by dancing.
Staying in an updated village house in Skarinou instead of a hotel is a great way to experience traditional Cypriot life without giving up luxuries such swimming pools and air conditioning.
Cyprus: A Series Of Unfortunately Fortunate Events
Before I went to Cyprus I was very dubious about what would be on offer for vegetarians and, having booked the holiday, unhappily accepted what I presumed to be a salad-filled fate.
Fortunately for my taste buds (unfortunately for my waist line) my friend Joe and I found some beautiful Cyprus restaurants, all offering a plethora of veggie options!
One of my favorite restaurants of the holiday was ‘Karlina’.
The restaurant is nicely situated opposite the tombs of the kings, so after a hectic day it was lovely to sit outside and enjoy a delicious meal.
The menu is extensive, there is a lot of café type food (which I try to avoid) but there was also a lot of vegetarian stuff on offer.
I chose the Moussaka, which was mouth-wateringly delicious, I still think of it now!
While Joe opted for the steak, which he also loved!
The portions were massive, but the prices were very reasonable, so obviously we went back quite a few times throughout the holiday!
One place that wasn’t so hot on veggie food, but apparently had a delicious feast of meats, was ‘Michael’s Tavern’.
While I had the Halloumi salad Joe enjoyed the Sheftalia, a traditional Cypriot food that sounds hideous to my innocent vegetarian ears (a sausage that uses pig’s stomach to wrap ingredients, as opposed to sausage casing) but was ‘absolutely scrumptious’ to quote Joe!
Although there was little on offer for me I still really enjoyed myself, the staff were really friendly and the décor was completely fascinating (in a very good way!) the walls were adorned with pictures, old school radios and lanterns.
Unfortunately for our livers, Cyprus clubs were just as amazing as the food!
One evening I managed to drag Joe to karaoke at ‘Wheatsheaf Pub’.
Although it was a struggle getting him there, after quite a few of the wonderfully cheap alcoholic beverages he looked right at home – by the end of it my throat was soar, but my heart was full of Abba!
It is situated 5 minutes from the beautiful sea harbor and makes amazing and highly original cocktails, ‘ice cream dreamz’ was one of my favorites!
However, be warned, if you don’t enjoy boogying to a bit of Rnb then this place is NOT for you, as this is pretty much all they play!
I absolutely loved it, but Joe (a big Dubstep fan) failed to share my enthusiasm.
For sports fans ‘PitStop bar’ is the place to be.
On Saturdays they show major sporting events on a large screen (at which point it was my turn to be unenthusiastic) and the décor is pretty sports orientated too.
Although Joe and I sometimes failed to like the same venues, we balanced it out enough that we had a wicked time, whether it was karaoke or sports bars!
For more information visit Mydestination.com/Cyprus.
Mediterranean holiday highlights: Malta
For a Mediterranean break away from the hurly-burly of modern life, a holiday in one of the Maltese Islands is a great choice.
Lying in the middle of the Med with Sicily to the north and Tunisia to the south, these small but picturesque islands enjoy a warm but fresh climate all through the season.
While the islands’ capital Valetta has all the excitement and facilities of a major European city, you don’t have to go far to find peace, tranquility and some of the best Mediterranean scenery Malta has to offer.
Malta’s unique culture
This group of diminutive islands have enjoyed a unique position in the heart of the Mediterranean Sea.
Over time the rulers of Malta have included the Romans, the Moors, the Greeks, the Knights of St John, the French and the British, leading to a cultural blend of European, Middle Eastern, African and British influences.
English is the official language alongside Maltese and the local cuisine is a mixture of Sicilian, Spanish, French and British flavours.
Malta’s Islands of history
Ancient churches, castles, historic remains and Megalithic temples are in evidence all over the main island of Malta.
World Heritage Site the Hypogeum of Hal Saflieni, is the only known prehistoric subterranean temple in the world.
The quietest and smallest of the islands is Comino situated midway between Malta and Gozo.
Just 3.5 square meters, it’s a haven for wildlife.
Regular boat trips run for visitors to view the caves of the spectacular karst or limestone landscape which includes the world famous Blue Lagoon offering a unique swimming experience.
Gozo can be reached by car ferry or helicopter.
This quieter and smaller island offers peaceful villages such as the small fishing port of Xlendi which is a popular scuba diving spot, delicious local seafood, and the vibrant local center Victoria.
Malt’s Art and contemporary life
Malta itself has mainly rocky but beautiful beaches, delightful walks and interesting architecture such as St John’s Cathedral in Valetta where original paintings by the Italian baroque painter Caravaggio can be seen.
The strong Catholic culture of the islands can be seen in plain sight around Valetta’s bountiful Baroque cityscape, but it’s also a city of modern whims.
The capital is noted for its shopping, fine restaurants and even a nightclub or two.
With a flying time of just over three hours and regular flights, a holiday of contrasts on Malta is within easy reach.
Despite their small size these islands have a huge amount of interest packed in that won’t fail to impress the most world-weary of travelers.
When in Malta, dance the night away
When I started packing for my two-week holiday in Malta I did not have my ‘party’ clothes in mind.
Yet, when I went on my first night out (of many) I quickly realized my mistake.
When my friends and I arrived at the hotel, exhausted from our journey, we ventured out to Paceville with the innocent intent of returning home early.
However this rather sensible decision was soon lost in the abyss, as we were quickly swept away by Malta’s dangerously alluring nightlife.
From pubs, to bars, to nightclubs, techno, to hip-hop, to Rnb, there was something for everyone and none of us could resist.
A typical night would usually begin with a few cocktails, we particularly liked the bar Footloose as it was relatively cheap and played great 80’s music.
Then we would sometimes go to one of the Salsa bars (Fuego is a lively one) to get us in the mood for dancing.
The music would instantly get us on our feet, and soon we were attempting (‘attempting’ being the operative word) to imitate the moves of the more professional dancers.
If we hadn’t exhausted ourselves here we would usually head to Gianpula.
This is a MUST for club lovers. Although it is a taxi ride away from Paceville, the experience is well worth the travel.
Gianpula is an open- air club situated in the middle of a field (a clubbers paradise in the middle of nowhere!)
There are seven bars with a stunning sound and lighting system.
Not only that but in the early hours of the morning you can even take a dip in the pool!
The next day, when the hangover sets in, and your worst thought is alcohol, there is no better way to spend the evening then in the fully air conditioned cinema, which has a screen dedicated to older, popular movies.
If you’re feeling a tad more adventurous than there is also ten-pin bowling alley which is great fun and inexpensive.
For a night of decadence one should head to the casino, which is held in a 19th century palace, built by the Marquis Scicluna.
Even the plush casino, which is well worth a visit even if you don’t gamble.
For a casino, it is truly picturesque and even has a terrace that connects directly to the sea.
Much of its architectural character has been retained from the original build, and there is a true feel of glamour to the place.
After two weeks of frolicking, without my party wardrobe, I’m exhausted.
I never expected that we, or Malta, had it in us!
But Malta is the type of place that will have you mourning over sunrise.