When you think about the best European beach destinations, a few names might immediately come to mind. You have the Italian Riviera, Côte d’Azur in France, Costa Esmeralda, the Costa del Sol, and the Algarve in Portugal.
But are they really the best? They’re certainly among the most popular European beach spots for tourists. And because they’re so popular, they might be too crowded for your taste.
Instead, you might want to try out these European beaches for your next summer holiday:
Durdle Door, Jurassic Coast, England
UK holiday-goers who might hop on a flight on British Airways or Delta might just want to stay back home, and spend the summer in the stunning Durdle Door beach right off the Jurassic Coast in the south of England. The area is so naturally gorgeous that it’s recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site.
You’ll love the sight of the lush green fields around you, along with the white limestone cliffs overlooking a small beach at the bottom. There’s even an intriguing arch-like rock formation in the middle of the beach water.
You can while away the summer days just relaxing on the beach, or you can hike along the white cliffs for even more breathtaking views. Within walking distance, there’s the charming small town of Lulworth Cove, where you can enjoy some lunch or from where you can get a boat trip to explore the area.
Amager Strand, Copenhagen, Denmark
Admittedly, very few people think of Copenhagen right away when it comes to beach destinations in Europe. But the city actually turns into a beach town during the summer season, since it’s located right by the Baltic Sea. The Danish summer might be a bit short, but the temperatures can reach high enough that a swim in the cold Baltic water can be quite invigorating.
You’ll find the beach on a manmade island constructed off of the original beach. You’ll cross 3 bridges until you reach the shoreline, and these bridges cross the lagoon that separates the island from the original beach.
This is a fine spot for sunbathing, as you get terrific views and fine white sand. The sunset views are especially awesome!
Solaris Beach, Sibenik, Croatia
You’ll find Šibenik on the Adriatic coast of Croatia, right between Split and Zadar. Here, you’ll find not just one but several beaches that aren’t as crowded as other European beaches. Your options include the city beach Banj, Brodarica beach, Jadrija beach, and Solaris Beach Resort.
Here you have up to 5 kilometers of pebble beaches, though there’s also a bay with sand beaches. The sunsets are gorgeous here, and you can enjoy the sight on a terrace or while you’re camping right there on the beach.
Aside from the beaches, you also have a beach club with a swimming pool that gets you terrific views over the sea. Actually, you have lots of swimming pools here, plus restaurants, playgrounds, and even an aquapark of more than 8,000 square meters. And if you want some serious relaxation and pampering, there’s a wellness center as well.
The sandy beaches her aren’t crowded at all, so it’s great when you’re trying to relax. Just sit back on the beach or swim in the water, and you won’t feel suffocated unlike on more crowded beaches. Or you can attend various beach clubs or beach parties in the area.
The city of Varna itself is fabulous, and offers a nice break from your beach relaxation. You can enjoy long walks here with the awesome views, and you can shop around—the prices here are certainly budget-friendly!