The best alternative Europe’s hidden beach treasures for crowd-free shores

From secret spots along the Costa Blanca to in-the-know Estonian hideouts, these are the Europe's hidden beach treasures

Sithonia Cape Halkidiki Greece, Europe's hidden beach treasures

A beach is as important to a holiday as custard is to apple pie. We imagine a sunny European getaway with golden between our toes, the soothing sound of the sea, and the refreshing ocean breeze. However, during busy times, finding a spot on the beach for a picnic or relaxation can be quite challenging.

The scene is different at some of the alternative beaches in Europe. While there may still be some tourists with parasols during the peak summer months, these beaches are not as crowded as the popular ones. From the beautiful Karpas Peninsula in Portugal to the cave-filled Ramla Bay in Malta and more, these are our top picks for when you want to avoid the crowds.

Karpas Peninsula Cyprus, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Karpas Peninsula, Cyprus

North Cyprus, once a remote and overlooked place, has become a popular destination for tourists due to more flights and additional border crossings. However, it remains much more peaceful and serene compared to the southern part of the island. The Karpas Peninsula, especially The Golden Beach, showcases this tranquility. This beautiful coastline stretches for 4km, from Galunopetra cape in the east to Jyles cape in the southwest. It is adorned with unique sand dunes that can reach up to 500 meters in length.

Where to stay: The Karpaz Gate Marina Hotel is a top pick for yacht enthusiasts who dock at the Peninsula. One highlight is the Marina Beach Club, which features an infinity pool, a private beach area with cabanas for rent, activities, and plenty of amenities for families.

Where to eat: While you may not be a guest at Karpaz Gate, it's a good to make a reservation at their Beach Club Restaurant. The tables at the restaurant offer a view of the sea from the veranda, and the beach is just a short walk away for a relaxing nap.

Ramla Bay Malta, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Ramla Bay, Malta

Gozo, a peaceful island near Malta, is famous for its beautiful coastline. One unique beach to explore is Ramla Bay, known for its reddish sands. Located between Marsalforn and San Blas bays, this beach offers calm waters during the day and stunning sunsets at night.

Where to stay: Ta'Cenc offers a special kind of luxurious experience that is environmentally friendly. Imagine cozy suites and traditional trulli, a relaxing spa, and two pools, all surrounded by beautiful gardens full of plants and animals.

Where to eat:Enjoy a vibrant ambiance, unique drinks, and waterfront scenery at one80 Kitchen at Mgarr Yacht Marina. Indulge in fresh seafood and traditional Maltese cuisine while watching fishermen come back with their catch and the charming harbor activities.

Betina Špilja Dubrovnik, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Betina Špilja, Dubrovnik, Croatia

Before we start, it's important to mention that Betina Cave Beach is not like the other soft-sand beaches in this collection. However, it has a unique feature that sets it apart: it's a beach located inside a cave. This pebbly coastline is nestled within the rocks and is surrounded by clear waters. Since it can only be accessed by water, it is never overcrowded with swimmers.

Where to stay: In Dubrovnik's old town, St. Joseph's is a beautifully restored 16th-century stone building that attracts travelers seeking romance, privacy, and authenticity. Each suite has a kitchenette for guests to enjoy freedom during their stay, with a touch of style that is not pretentious.

Where to eat: Lucin Kantun in Dubrovnik old town is a must-visit spot with its modern take on Croatian dishes, classic cocktails, and cozy kitchen.

Wild beach in Vourvourou Sithonia Greece, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Sithonia Cape, Halkidiki, Greece

The Sithonia Cape, located at the southern end of the Sithonia Peninsula, is surrounded by sea lungs on both sides and ends with a gorse-covered islet. Unlike the busy resorts of Halkidiki, this open beach offers plenty of solace and tranquility.

Where to stay: There are not many places to stay near the cape, but about 50 minutes away by is Ekies All Senses Resort. Picture: luxurious simplicity, a natural approach, and hammocks – ideal for enjoying ouzo – laid out on the white sandy beaches.

Where to eat: Panorama Kalamitsi, located near Sithonia Cape, is a charming and beloved spot among locals. With its rustic charm and idyllic atmosphere, it offers an authentic experience. Although there is no website, the friendly staff is known to accommodate extra tables during busy times.

La Plage de la Vieille Eglise Cap de Carteret, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Plage d'Hatainville, Normandy, France

France offers a wide variety of luxurious beaches, ranging from the glamorous Côte D'Azur to the endless sandy stretches of Brittany. However, Plage d'Hatainville, located near the town of Barneville-Carteret, is often overlooked by tourists. Despite being one of the largest beaches in the area, it remains peaceful and quiet. It's a perfect destination for those who enjoy leisurely walks and exploration, rather than spending the entire day on the shore. This unique characteristic adds to its charm.

Where to stay: Hotel La Marine provides guests with a delightful breakfast accompanied by a scenic view of the fishing port. Guests can also enjoy their leisure on the terrace and unwind in the comfortable and sunny rooms designed for relaxation.

Where to eat: La Potinière is situated on the famous Carteret beach, protected by Cap de Carteret. It provides easy access to the sea from the terrace and remains lively until late at night.

Matsi Beach Estonia, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Matsi Beach, Estonia

Pärnu, a town from the 20th century, is well-known for its health spas. Nothing beats the feeling of relaxation and rejuvenation from the fresh sea breeze. Visit the peaceful Matsi Beach, surrounded by sand dunes and a charming coastal pine forest. It's serene, beautiful, and one of the few sandy beaches around.

Where to stay: Built in 1696 as a rectory, this historic building in Pärnu is now a boutique hotel called Boutique Hotel Rosenplänter. The stylish interiors reflect the building's history and local tales of the past.

Where to eat: Steffani, a charming daytime diner in the center of Pärnu, may not have fancy decorations or extravagant features, but it offers a diverse menu and a cozy atmosphere where locals engage in lively conversations.

Riserva Vendicari Sicily, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Riserva Vendicari, Sicily

The vast sands of Riserva Vendicari extend to the border of a protected national park, which also features charming coves, a rugged and rolling landscape, and, most importantly, very few beachgoers.

Where to stay: Formerly a Sicilian farm, Casa Vendicari has been transformed into a unique and fashionable boutique hotel, just a short walk from Vendicari Beach. It stands out as the sole hotel within the reserve, enveloped by untouched and pristine nature.

Where to eat: Agriturismo Il Baglietto is located within the nature reserve and offers delicious Sicilian fish dishes. Tables are spread out under olive trees for a unique dining experience.

Cala Sardinera Costa Blanca, Europe's hidden beach treasures

Cala Sardinera, Costa Blanca

When considering the Costa Blanca, a 200 km coastline along the Mediterranean, we usually don't think of something different. But Cala Sardinera is not your typical tourist spot. This natural beach with its rough sand is protected by the Cap Prim headland and can be accessed by a charming hike through pine trees, rosemary bushes, and other plants.

Where to stay: Casa Babel is an 18th-century mansion located in the hillside town of Villalonga, at the base of the Safor Mountains. It offers eight rooms, each featuring four-poster beds.

Where to eat: Tula, a restaurant located on Playa del Arenal in Jávea, is named after the owner's grandmother. It offers a warm and inviting atmosphere and serves delicious meals made with fresh, seasonal ingredients. The restaurant provides a fine-dining experience without any pretentiousness.

Share This Article
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *