Pretty much everywhere in America is cold right now, and we don’t like it. If the chill of winter has you dreaming about sandy beaches on faraway islands, then take a look at this list of some of the best international beaches.
With the right travel visas, valid passports, and your holiday bonus in hand, these summery escapes can be next on your travel itinerary.
Bells Beach, Victoria, Australia
Bells Beach is ranked second in the world for activities. The longest-running surfing competition, the Rip Curl Pro, is held here every year. The beach is just south of Melbourne in Australia, where we’re sure you can find a few other beaches worthy of a good book and piña colada to round out your vacation. Bonus: Australia ETA Visas can be obtained easily through Swift.
Maya Bay, Ko Phi Phi, Thailand
If you’re looking for a great party, Ko Phi Phi is the place to be. Every night after the sun goes down, this island in the south of Thailand turns into a vibrant party. Whether you’re there for the infamous moon parties or you’re simply stopping by on a Tuesday, you’ll be sure to find vendors on every street corner selling hurricanes in a bucket for just a few bucks. Fire dancers perform at a line of bars along the beach every night — it’s the best kind of madness.
But if partying isn’t your thing, Ko Phi Phi is still a great place to visit. Most people who come here sleep in after late nights, so you can have the beach almost entirely to yourself before ten in the morning.
Get a local taxi boat to take you to Maya Bay before sunrise in order to experience one of the most beautiful bays in the world the way it was meant to be experienced. Like most beaches on this list, Maya Bay is extremely popular with tourists, but if you can get there early, you can have a few magical moments to yourself.
Seven Mile Beach, Grand Cayman
One of the best beaches in the world for families, Seven Mile Beach offers tranquil blue waters and soft, fine sand. The beach is lined with all-inclusive hotels that have great options for family pool time, snorkeling, and lounging on the beach for hours on end.
Ipanema Beach, Rio de Janiero
Brazil’s best beach for people watching, Ipanema has a boardwalk that rivals Venice Beach in California. Here you’ll see all types of beachgoers wandering about, soaking in the sun and enjoying the scene. Local stands sell beer all along the beach, and several waterfront gyms are filled with bodybuilders flexing their muscles, usually in thongs and not much else. Oh yeah, and the water is beautiful, too. You’ll need a Brazil Visa to travel to Rio, so be sure to give Swift a call to help!
Rob Lee is co-founder of Swift Passport and Visa Services. Originally from Michigan, Rob is an avid fisherman and SCUBA diver who enjoys adventure travel.