The 15 best beaches in the Mediterranean are perfect for memorable vacations in seaboard countries or those that are part of the greater region.
From the famous Greek islands to the breathtaking Italian coastlines and unusual Mediterranean shores of Egypt, days soaking up the sunshine on atmospheric beaches are possible wherever you go. Each offers something unique, inviting travelers to snorkel with marine life in coral gardens or discover history in the architecture that casts shadows across the water.
These are some of the best Mediterranean beaches to visit, including several surprising suggestions for a memorable vacation, whether you are interested in Greece’s glamor, Italy’s charm, Croatia’s hidden gems or Turkey’s distinctive luxuries.
Spiaggia dei Conigli, or Rabbit Beach, is a tranquil beach on the island of Lampedusa near Sicily. It is one of Italy’s famous shorelines and travelers flock to the shallow waters and soft golden sandbars to catch the sun in style.
A rocky coastline of cliffs in shades of yellows, browns, and grays conceals the cove-like beach. Umbrellas dot the shoreline in navy hues and complement the turquoise and sapphire colors of the crystal-clear water. Visitors gather on velvety patches of sand, stroll along the rugged ridges, and swim in the shallow waters that sparkle in the sunshine.
A short drive stands between the shore and charming restaurants, small shops, and the treasures of Lampedusa town, or your resort overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
Ses Illetes is a spectacular and unique shoreline on the Spanish island of Formentera, a small but sensational Balearic island. The beach lies within the Ses Salines d'Eivissa and Formentera Natural Park, ensuring the protection of natural beauty and marine life.
From the powdery white sands, visitors gaze across the calm, turquoise waters to see the five islets of Ses Illetes that add to the dramatic beauty of the beach. A long strip of narrow sand runs between the endless stretches of sea as if once connecting Formentera to the island of Ibiza.
The size of the shoreline offers travelers plenty of chances to escape the crowds as they search for quiet slices of the soft sand to dig their toes into or peaceful waters for a swim. You can also cycle, sail, and settle in for a delightful dinner along the beautiful coastline of Ses Illetes.
En Vau is a beach like no other, located near France’s Mediterranean fishing port Cassis. The estuary cove features a castaway shoreline situated beneath the summits of looming limestone formations.
The pebbled beach with its emerald waters between chalk-white rock towers and green shrubbery is a feast for the eyes. A short hike leads travelers through the mesmerizing cove to where the pebbles drop into the shallow waters. You can swim out from the beach along the edge of the cliffs in search of aquatic life that finds shelter in the Calanques.
Travelers also choose to enjoy the seaside spectacles in other ways, among them on tranquil kayaking trips to secluded areas and on stand-up paddleboards to where the inlet meets the sea.
Positioned on the border of Dubrovnik Old Town, Banje Beach is a gateway to the beauty of Croatia’s coastline and the country’s deep cultural heritage.
Ancient stone buildings and cobbled lanes circle the trendy beach, where visitors gather to catch some sun and unwind after a tour through time in the Old Town. White umbrellas paint the golden shoreline, contrasting the vibrant blue and green shades of Croatia’s clear waters.
You can unroll your towel on the sand, swim in the Adriatic Sea, or follow the aromas of Croatian seafood dishes pouring from the terraces of stylish seaside restaurants.
The Santorini seaside jewel of Red Beach in Greece is a famous shore to visit, its red landscape reminiscent of Mars. The deep red, pink, and ruby hues of the beach cascade into the shimmering sea.
Red Beach is a unique slice of paradise, where travelers adore snapping up stunning landscape photography, wandering the rocky coast, and swimming in the temperate sea. The beach is also a stone’s throw from the ancient site of Akrotiri, preserving the history of the Cycladic Bronze Age.
Fascinating rock formations lie beneath the surface of the Santorini seas and you can enjoy snorkeling at Red Beach to discover the underwater wonderlands. You can also arrive at Red Beach on a private yacht as you explore more of the best beaches of the Greek islands.
Hilton Beach is Tel Aviv’s main sandy strip, where locals and visitors gather to embrace the Mediterranean sunshine. The spirit of Tel Aviv and eager travelers culminate along the busy white sands sweeping Israel’s Mediterranean coast.
You can find a comfortable spot shaded by an umbrella to sit back and relax on a summer day or swim in the gentle swells lapping against the shore. The promenade boasts plenty of exquisite restaurants where you can grab a bite to eat or sip cocktails as you people watch from the chic balconies.
Watersports are popular among adventurous travelers who visit Hilton Beach in Tel Aviv. You can surf at popular spots or race across the Mediterranean Sea on jet skis.
Learn more: Israel Tours
The steep cliffs of Turkey’s Lycian Coast conceal the picturesque golden sands and dazzling turquoise waters of Kaputaş Beach, one of the most famous in the country.
You can reach the short but sensational strip of sand down 187 steps that cascade from the coastal road to the cove, where white umbrellas shade the sands from the sweltering sun. The beach is a postcard-perfect place to swim, snorkel, and sunbathe, with refreshing waters a welcome retreat from the warm Mediterranean temperatures.
Cruise ships also anchor in the crystal-clear waters surrounding the beach and can take travelers to the iconic Blue Cave. This mesmerizing natural formation shimmers in iridescent shades of blue, elevating a day trip to Kaputaş Beach.
Almaza Beach is one of the best beaches in Egypt. The heavenly coastline is staking its claim as one of the most superb and luxurious shores to visit on a trip to the country.
Glamorous hotels fringe the strip, gourmet restaurants serve exquisite seafood caught in the Mediterranean Sea, and watersports let travelers explore its marine beauty. Relatively new in comparison with more popular beach destinations, Almaza Bay’s beach is an unusually good spot to consider for a Mediterranean vacation.
Kitesurfing, volleyball, and more beach activities are available for families visiting the shore. Or you can retreat to a comfortable thatched pergola for a romantic afternoon of cocktails by the sea.
Praia da Marinha is a picturesque beach in Portugal and one of the most breathtaking in the world. The golden sand and turquoise water sit below striking rock formations, creating a dramatic seaside backdrop to summer days lazing in the sunshine.
Hidden coves can be found along the cinematic coastline that stretches from the sandy shore across the Algarve. The snorkeling from Praia da Marinha is sensational and hiking across the rugged rocks is a treat for adventurous travelers.
You can also cruise across the shimmering water to the world-famous Benagil Cave around the corner from the sandy strip. An opening in the sea cave invites travelers inside, revealing a secret beach and an aperture in the cave ceiling that lets light shine to illuminate the golden formation. This is an unmissable experience for travelers who visit Praia de Marinha.
Saidia Beach in Morocco is another unexpected Mediterranean beach. Travelers who choose to visit it will be thrilled to find an exceptionally vibrant strip of sand catering to summer vacation fun.
Umbrellas pepper the long stretch of sand that meets the chalk-white cliffs of the border between Morocco and Algeria. Behind the beach, multiple-star accommodations dominate the seaside and elegant restaurants border the sand and promenade.
The energy at Saidia Beach during the summer is palpable and travelers enjoy the thrills of watersports day in and day out. You can kayak, ride jet skis, and more in the warm Mediterranean Sea on a trip to Saidia Beach.
Spiaggia di Sansone is a breathtaking beach with translucent waters and towering cliffs that create a dramatic backdrop rivaled by few Mediterranean beaches.
You can feel the tiny white pebbles and fine grains of sand beneath your feet as you stroll from one end of the beach to the other. The water is beautiful, casting shades of blue and shifting to emeralds and indigos further out to sea. Cruises ships gather in the water and travelers hop off their decks to snorkel in Spiaggia di Sansone’s sea.
You can admire the endless allure of Italy’s finest beach as you enjoy seclusion among the picturesque slice of seaside paradise.
Super Paradise Beach is one of the best beaches in Europe, let alone in the Mediterranean. It is a popular shoreline and the main strip of sand on the Greek island of Mykonos.
Travelers flock to the soft sands of Super Paradise Beach to enjoy the island's vibrant atmosphere, whether visiting the chic bars and glamorous restaurants or wandering the busy beach. Super Paradise Beach caters to all types of travelers, immersing visitors in the charms of Mykonos’s magnificent energy.
You can flyboard, tube, and cruise across the sea, then slurp oysters while viewing the breathtaking sunset. Anything is possible at the center of glamor in the Greek islands.
Bogatell is a bustling beach in Barcelona, where travelers enjoy the perks of spending summer in the Mediterranean. The beach is a popular hangout for visitors who wish to retreat to soft sands between tours of the city.
The promenade extends for miles, inviting visitors to explore the restaurants and landmarks peppering the coastline. You can also partake in water sports on the main strip or find a quiet spot to lay down your towel and tuck into a sensational bite of Spanish tapas.
Bogatell is a brilliant place for an afternoon stroll in Barcelona and one of the best Mediterranean beaches to visit if you want to combine sun and sand with highlights of Spanish history and culture.
Known as Moon Bay for its crescent strip of lunar-like pebbles, Mesečev Zaliv is a stunning and unique beach to visit on a Mediterranean vacation in Slovenia. The pocket of seaside paradise can be found in Strunjan Nature Park, a sanctuary that protects the peculiar shore and its fascinating wildlife.
Those who wish to spend time embracing the endless natural beauty of Moon Bay can walk a route off the beaten path to the untouched coastline in the park. The reward for your effort will be an isolated shore with hardly any other visitors.
Learn more: Slovenia Tours
Sveti Stefan Beach is a famous strip of sand on the small Sveti Stefan islet of Montenegro. Fifteenth-century fortress homes cast shadows across the pink sands where visitors can relax on comfortable recliners and enjoy the seaside splendor.
You can swim, sunbathe, and wander the cobbled promenade, absorbing the calm and regal atmosphere that envelops the crown jewel of Montenegro’s seasides. You can also explore the charming old town to immerse yourself in the local history or find a quiet table at a lavish restaurant to tuck into sensational seafood dishes.
Learn more: Montenegro Tours & Vacations
The best beaches in the Mediterranean showcase the natural beauty and seaside splendors of its coast. The marvelous red sands of Santorini’s Red Beach in Greece, the breathtaking strip of Ses Illetes in Spain, and the unique summer shores of Saidia Beach in Morocco offer something for every type of traveler.
To plan a trip with days spent on these picture-perfect beaches, customize sample itineraries from our Mediterranean Vacation Packages. You can also take a closer look at what the Mediterranean has to offer as you plan with helpful information and inspiring recommendations in our Mediterranean Travel Guide.