Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Best beaches to swing a hammock

Try Punalu’u, USA - Hawai’i’s black-sand wonderland has won a few ‘best beach’ awards in recent times, and it’s truly an astonishing sight: Punalu’u’s startling blue waters lap up against the jetblack beach, which is backed by rows of deep-green coconut palms. This is one place where your hammock will really come in handy – it’s scenery that demands your constant, supine contemplation – and you might even spot a hawksbill turtle wandering onto the sand to lay its eggs. Don’t touch them, though – they’re an endangered species. Hawksbill turtles (known locally as Honu’ea) nest here from May to September but remember – hands off. Human bacteria can prove deadly.

SHOOT: Can't believe I haven't been to any of these beaches.
Tourist reading book while sitting on palm tree trunk on beach, Sinai, Red Sea.
  • Portrait of Lithuanian man in old town Kaunas near Town Hall Square.
  • White sand beach and resort building.
  • Relaxing under a thatched beach umbrella.
  • Palm trees on Long Beach, Pulau Perhentian Kecil: it doesn't get much more idyllic than this...
  • Traditional beach 'palapa' on Isla Mujueres.
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1. Dahab, Egypt

2. Curonian Spit, Lithuania

3. Jambiani, Tanzania

This the Beach that Time Forgot, where men in fishing dhows set sail at sunset for the reefs, women gather seaweed daily, and people like you are constantly boiling to a crisp under the baking sun.

4. Kerala Coast, India

Beachy types generally don’t hop up and down with glee when India is mentioned, but those in the know are enraptured. Tucked in along India’s 600km-long Kerala coast is a string of coconut-palm-fringed beaches adjoining lulling surf and bluest-of-blue waters.

5. Pulau Perhentian, Malaysia

The palm-fringed beaches of the Perhentian Islands, covered in tropical rainforest, are about as natural as they come: calm, hassle-free and with virtually no signs of commercialisation.

6. Kai Islands, Indonesia

There’s a growing chorus that says these remote white-sand beaches are the finest the world has to offer

7. Isla Mujeres, Mexico

8. North Stradbroke Island, Australia

9. Ko Pha-Ngan, Thailand

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