With the summer coming to a disappointing end, it is time to start thinking about holidays for next year. We all need something to look forward to, helping us through the dreary winter months. It's all to easy to head back to the same destination year on year as one of the most difficult components of booking a holiday is finding the inspiration of where to head to next. After all, beaches come in all shapes and sizes but how many of them really offer us a truly unique experience?
The first beach at the top of my 'to visit' list is a destination a friend of mine recently honeymooned to. Reunion Island, a beautiful remote island located between the equally idyllic Madagascar and Mauritius. The main beach is volcano-made and situated in the town of Piton Sainte-Rose, which was created in the 1970s when the Piton de la Fournaise volcano erupted. The sand is black and green in colour with the green deriving from ground-up precious gems, called olivine, in the rock. The best time to visit this well kept secret destination is between May and June, where you can expect temperatures of between 26°C and 28°C.
A little closer to home, with only a 3 hour flight; perfect for those who aren't keen on flying, is the remote beach of Isola dei Conigli or "Rabbit Island" situated 105 miles away from mainland Italy. This destination is ideal for those who want to escape everyday life for a while and experience the tranquillity of breathtaking crystal clear water and super soft sand. The island is protected due to the loggerhead sea turtles that lay their eggs there and, if the tide is permitting, you may even catch a glimpse of them.
Continuing on the theme of turtles, if you can handle the 18 hour journey, you could head out to Turtle Island, Borneo. Situated in the Sulu Sea, north of Borneo, the Turtle Islands Park is dedicated to rescuing endangered turtles. A visit here will allow you to see turtles laying eggs and newborn turtles heading for their first adventure out to sea! I challenge you to find a more magical experience than seeing new life head out into the big wide world for the first time.
For those of you who prefer to holiday much closer to home, you can't go too far wrong with a trip to Wales. Head to the Gower peninsula region of Wales to catch a glimpse of one of the most picture perfect beaches the UK coastline has to offer. Hire a cottage here and you won't be disappointed with what the surrounding area has to offer.
Speaking about unusual beach destinations around the world, Naomi Wilkinson, marketing director of online travel agent Travel Republic, said: "The world is peppered with breathtaking beaches that are unfortunately often over-looked, whether it is long-haul or a little closer to home, we can guarantee there is a beach out there that will stir a little curiosity beyond the norm."
So, when thinking about your next holiday, be sure to think outside the box. Whether it's at home or abroad, there are beaches out there that will not only offer you clear waters and soft sand between your toes, but also an experience that will stay with you for a lifetime.