– Bondi or Manly, near Sydney for convenience, style and surf.
– Byron Bay, between Sydney and Brisbane, for a neo-hippie ‘alternative’ beach scene.
– North Stradbroke Island, near Brisbane, for wildlife walks, quiet beaches and good surf.
– Noosa Heads, Sunshine Coast, a tranquil, dispersed town with great, soft beaches, parks and surf.
– Fraser Island’s Lake McKenzie, with clear freshwatersurrounded by tropical rainforest and the purest white sand. See also Beach Hazards.
– Mui Ne, Mui Ne, near Phan Thiet. An upcoming resort area known for its rolling dunes.
– Hon Chong, Ha Tien; a tempting beach near the Cambodian border.
– Bai Tam (Long Beach), Phu Quoc Island. An Asian gem.
– Datai Beach, Langkawi Island. One of Asia’s best stretches of secluded sand.
– Pantai Teluk Belanga (Emerald Bay), Pangkor Laut. A luxury resort on a perfect crescent of a private island.
The best season for both east and west coast beaches; it’s a long hike there for most travellers but once you’re there it’s magic. . . low prices, lovely people, a fascinating culture tinted with sleaze, exquisite food and of course magnificent stretches of sand to suit all tastes from Phuket to Pattaya and Phi Phi; see Thai beaches map and beach pictures.
– Honda Bay, Palawan, Philippines. An area of outstanding beauty.
– Muelle Bay, Puerto Galera, Mindoro Island. A terrific place to go island-hopping on to perfect, isolated beaches.
– White Beach, Boracay Island. Exceptionally white, soft sand that never gets hot, with a large number of small, friendly hotels.
Beaches along the Bay of Bengal such as Ngapali Beach, Chaung Tha Beach and Ngwe Saung along the Bay of Bengal.
Egypt’s Red Sea beach resorts as well as Israel‘s rather tired Eilat are reasonably priced, the sun is constant, the coral is kaleidoscopic, the sea’s still warm and day trips to Luxor or Abu Simbel are a mass-tourism must-do. Ahem.
The Red Sea’s air temperature is generally about 20°C in December (18°C at night) and water temperature is 23°C with low humidity and little chance of rain, so book ahead if you fancy swimming on Christmas day!
– Camps Bay, South Africa, with great views and conveniently located near magnificent Cape Town but the water is always chilly.
– Spain’sCanary Islands, enjoy endless sunshine and beaches of all types – activities, nudist, family, surfing, wild town sand, back-to-nature coves. The southern sections of islands tend to be the warmest and Fuerteventura and Lanzarote the sunniest. La Palma is the wettest island.
Beaches that are not a good destination in December
Not a good time for much of the Pacific but there are bright spots. e. g. SE Australia, Mexico (for both, see above); the Rock Islands, Palau are good in December but south Pacific such as the Cook Islands, Fiji and Samoas are going through a wet patch.
Generallysouth Baliis where the best beaches are, including the huge stretches of Kuta and Legian and the newer, classy resorts on the Bukit Peninsula, though from December to Feburary is not an ieal time to go due to heavy rain.
The wind’s brisk and the water’s brassy!