We always say that choosing your perfect beach hotel and location depends very much on what kind of beach lover you are… Some are after all action throughout the day and ocean sunsets at night, whilst others spend their days sauntering along white sands stopping off for the occasional cocktail, whilst others simply want to bury themselves in a sun bed with a good book, and leave behind the woes of everyday life. It also depends very much on what your occasion is; are you a family looking for a beach destination to suit everyone’s needs, are you a honeymoon couple seeking your own little slice of paradise, or are you an adventurous pair of pals looking for underwater thrills? Luckily, Africa’s beaches have it all.
We will guide you through the best beach options on the continent for each kind of beach lover – it is important though to note that we can’t explain every option in one blog post, so ringing up and explaining your particular interests is by far the best way of narrowing down your best beachy options.
Which African beaches to choose to suit all the family
So when comparing beach options for the family, we think there are a few crucial things to consider…
Kid’s don’t like long flights and neither will you with your kids! If you are tacking on safari, make sure it is accessible to the beach.Activities for days! Make sure you are based somewhere which will provide lots to do for yourself and your kids.
A decent sized hotel, especially with small kids, will mean you won’t be worried of getting on top of other guests, and means everyone can pretty much run riot in the spacious hotel grounds.
A lot of families flock to Mauritius because of the very good big hotels and all the activities which it offers. However, Mauritius is not the easiest to get to! Even if you are not going on safari too, it involved “dead” nights, and coupled with these and lengthy internal flights in between long-haul international flights makes for a pretty unrelaxing beginning to your family holiday!
Instead, we would always suggest the colourful Zanzibar, just off the coast of Tanzania. From the UK and US international flights connect through Europe and straight to Dar es Salaam which is only a little 15-minute hop from Zanzibar. However, it is not just convenience which makes Zanzibar such a fantastic African beach destination, but also the rich selection of boutique and character full bigger hotels, as well as all the activities under the African sun. Also, Zanzibar is fantastic in both the Christmas holidays and throughout the summer months; almost like it was made for Indian Ocean family getaway.
Which African beaches to choose for your relaxing honeymoon
When everywhere you look there are white sands forever, sparkling turquoise seas and beautiful boutique hotels it can be very difficult to make a decision! We think, alike with for families, it is a shame to spend a lot of your precious honeymoon time on lengthy flights, so whatever else your plans are on your honeymoon, make sure your beach time is relatively easy to access.
It can be difficult to find slices of paradise which are untouched by tourism and also easily accessible. However, we know a little gem on the East African coast which may be just the ticket; Kenya’s Diani Beach. With a turbulent recent history, it was off the radar for quite a few years. However, as this has settled and it is officially back on the map. We would recommend getting to the Kenyan coast before everyone else jumps on the band wagon – the beaches are pristine and there are some excellent boutique hotels to choose from for a really intimate and (now) off the beaten track beach honeymoon. Less easily accessible from your safari is the dreamy Seychelles and the Maldives. These are seriously spoiling honeymoon destinations too and the epitome of Indian Ocean relaxation… If you don’t mind more travel!
Which African beaches to choose for your action packed off the beaten track adventure
If you get twitchy lying on a beach and are looking for an action packed beach experience, Africa also has some fantastic adventures in store for you. If you are looking for the classic beach underwater activities, then all our favourite areas in Kenya, Zanzibar, Mozambique, The Maldives, Mauritius and The Seychelles have these in abundance. However, if you are looking for something a little different and more “out there” you should look into Madagascar and South Africa…
Madagascar offers an adventure in itself; it is not just about the beautiful Indian Ocean Beaches but also in the unique nature on the island, and the fact that you can spend a whole two-week trip there without getting twitchy as it really is huge and full of surprises. With astonishing bio diversity, glorious beaches and some seriously world class accommodation options (see Tsarabanjina and Manafiafy), it is like nowhere in Africa for an off the beaten track beach holiday with a twist.
South Africa is fabulous for those who love putting on a wetsuit and tearing up the coastline. From shark cage diving for the serious adrenaline seekers out there, to surfing, diving, swimming with seals and paragliding… For those who want an adventurous and unconventional beach experience, South Africa is your place.