We bet you haven’t heard of these hidden beaches that are conveniently located in our neighbouring countries! Expect gorgeous views, soft sand, and crystal clear waters- minus the crowd. Note: You might get a serious case of wanderlust after reading this.
1. Nai Harn Beach
Flanked on both sides by mountains with dense jungles, Nai Harn Beach is a peaceful beach at the southern end of Phuket. Snorkel, dive, or surf the afternoon away, and as the sun goes down, dine in one of the restaurants along the beach while enjoying the sunset.
P.S. For a bird’s eye view shot of this secluded beach, head to the Windmill Viewpoint.
2. Railay Beach
This beach is a short boat ride away from Krabi’s town of Ao Nang. It is surprisingly tranquil considering its proximity to the popular and often crowded tourist destination of Krabi – and we hope it stays that way. Apart from chilling out with an ice cold beer, the rocky limestone formations around the beach make it a great spot for rock climbing too.
3. Lao Liang Beach
Head north to Koh Lao Liang, a small island that’s one of Thailand’s best kept secrets. The island is where the quiet and idyllic Lao Liang beach is hidden. Explore nature at this beach with rock climbing, snorkelling, and kayaking. Or just take a relaxing dip in the waters and spend an afternoon suntanning along the beach.
4. Pulau Lang Tengah
On Malaysia’s East Coast, between Pulau Redang and Pulau Perhentian, lies the lesser known beach of Pulau Lang Tengah. This often overlooked island offers a peaceful retreat with nature. Trek through the tropical jungle, swim among the coral reefs, sit along the jetty to watch the sunset, and laze on the beach with the occasional squirrel keeping you company.
5. Pulau Sibu
Pulau Sibu is located off the west coast of the nearby Johor, and is even closer to Singapore than Pulau Tioman, making it a great spot for a quick getaway. Clear turquoise waters to snorkel and dive in is a given, but Pulau Sibu also has a rocky shoreline and mangrove swamps for you to explore.
6. Pulau Tiga
With unspoilt nature and a beautiful stretch of beach, this is the first ‘secret’ location where the Survivor series was shot. Take a dive in the waters, have a bath in the island’s natural volcanic mud, and don’t be surprised to meet the resident snakes of the island while you’re there too.
7. Pulau Mabul
Who knew a former fishing village would make such an awesome beach getaway? Stay in one of the water bungalows and wake up to the sound of the lapping waves. Plus, the sloping reefs and crystal clear waters are a diver’s dream. And if watching the sunset isn’t enough, Pulau Mabul is an excellent spot for stargazing as well.
8. Green Bowl Beach
Referred to as Green Bowl Beach due to the moss-covered reef that appears when the water recedes, this beach in Ungasan is hidden some 300 steps down from a tiny road. This secluded beach paradise is worth the journey though, with its fine sand and some of the best waves for surfing. Oh, and the caves are a great photo spot – just don’t wake the sleeping bats inside.
9. Atuh Beach
This beach is surrounded by rocky cliffs and mountains that provide the perfect vantage point to admire the spectacular scenery. Located on the island of Nusa Penida, southeast of Bali, Atuh Beach is just a bike ride away from Nusa Penida Harbor. Venture away from the blue waters of this beach and you’ll find natural caves that house swallows’ nests as well.
10. Karma Beach
You can’t get more exclusive than this private beach at Karma Kandara. Did we mention that former guests include supermodel Kristy Hinze and actor Jeremy Piven? This is the perfect place to indulge in a relaxing getaway with world-class Mediterranean cuisine and fresh seafood. As night falls, lounge by the beach with a cocktail in hand.
We’ve got so many beaches to add to our bucket list now. Which of these are on yours?
(Header image credit: original image by Dennis Keller, edited by author)
Also read: Decathlon: So Ulu But You Still Must Visit. Here’re 5 Reasons!