World’s Best Beaches – February

7 Mile Beach, Grand Cayman, Caribbean

7 Mile beach, Grand Cayman, Caribbean

Best beaches to visit in February according to climate data

Here’s  our mosquito/Zika advice page and the latest Zika zone map from CDC

The Caribbean is home to hundreds of striking beaches and magnificent beach resorts; the climate is superb in February and relatively uncrowded.

If you’re on a tight leash check our Best Budget Islands page headed by the brilliant white strands of the Dominican Republic with loads of things to do when the beach begins to bore, lively, lovely and culture-rich Jamaica at number two.

For US citizens Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands are an easy ride, good flights and no passports needed, plenty of burgers and spectacular beaches!

Yacht sailors like the line-of-sight navigationof the British Virgin Islands or the Grenadines, with the Spanish Virgin Islands (around Puerto Rico) a close third.

Arambol beach in Goa, India. Photo by Aleksandr Zykov

Arambol beach in Goa, India. Photo by Aleksandr Zykov

India: Goa beaches are a people magnet but interesting and can be fun. One problem is stretches of sand tend to be massive, medium-brown and featureless – apart from the throngs of fully dressed Indians watching every move the foreigners make. Note that Indians will often paddle-swim fully dressed so topless bathing is not a good idea. The least crowded stretches of Goa are north of the Chapora River.

Maldives Islands: Endless smart soft sand beaches on coral atolls decorated with spectacular resorts and astronomical prices.
Most visitors come on packages, staying at one of the 90 otherwise uninhabited resort islands. Resorts are well set up with beautiful beaches and clear azure seas, great for snorkeling and diving. There are no cultural experience at all, just luxury and escapism with no hassle. Maldives Photos.

– Ngapali Beach, Chaung Tha Beach beach, Ngwe Saung Beach, Myanmar. Little developed, reasonable prices, nice cabins, very nice locals, very unpleasant military junta.

Oman: Muscat beaches (Arabian Sea). Over 1, 000 miles of coastline with endless unspoilt sand and very few tourists.

Seychelles: Anse Lazio, Praslin island, Anse Source d’Argent, La Digue Island, Ile Souris, east coast of Mahé island. Pricey but incredible ‘paradise’ island resorts including one of the world’s most photographed beaches.

– Unawatuna, Sri Lanka. An ideal destination for a beach and culture holiday.

– South Africa’s east coast is a low-cost, low jet-lag, sea-food and wine paradise, with action-packed city beaches such as Durban and totally peaceful, undeveloped beaches like Nature’s Valley. In February beach business is slackening off but the place is still a delight for Europeans escaping mid-winter.

Sai Kaew Beach on Ko Samet

Sai Kaew Beach on Ko Samet‘s (aka Koh Samed) east side at sunrise.

High season for east and west coast beaches. Low prices, lovely people, fascinating culture, exquisite food and of course magnificent beaches to suit all budgets from Phuket to Pattaya and Phi Phi; see Thai beaches map and beach pictures.

Egypt‘s Red Sea beach resorts as well as Israel‘s rather tired Eilat are competitively priced, the sun is endless, the coral is a blooming joy, the sea’s at it’s coldest but still 20°C and day trips to Luxor are sensational if you can handle crowds or go it alone.

The Red Sea’s average air temperature is 20°C in February (16°C at night) and water temperature will be around 20°C, with low humidity and little chance of rain.

Sydney

Sydney’s famous Bondi Beach on a mild surf day, East Coast Australia. Photo by Adam J.

– 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.

Florida and especially down south in Miami or the Florida Keys it should be very warm and sunny in February, with highs generally around 77F (25C) and lows around 63F (17C), so very comfortable. However, sea waters will still be chilly for swimming and some rain may fall.

Southern California also runs to very warm day time temperatures with occasional rain showers during February. Long Beach averages highs of 66F (19C) in February.
Beaches services and facilities may be limited and seaweed evident, depending on the area.

– The Canary Islands, enjoy a climate of perpetual summer with sunshine as standard and temperatures between 18C (64F) and the upper 30Cs; there are beaches of all types available, 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. Water temperatures are not very high, ranging from 18C in winter to 22º C in summer.

South Africa, Camps Bay, with stunning views and easy access from lovely, low-cost Capetown but cold water.

– Datai Beach, Langkawi Island. One of the world’s most secluded and picture-perfect hideaways.

– Pantai Teluk Belanga (Emerald Bay), Pangkor Laut. A luxury resort on a perfect crescent bay of a tiny private island.

The peninsula region of Cancun with Boulevard Kukulkan

The peninsula region of Cancun with Boulevard Kukulkan’s strip clearly visible on the right. Heading right (east) goes to the downtown area on the mainland while straight down the strip and then right at the far end gets to the airport

Fine beaches on both Pacific side such as Cabo San Lucas and Caribbean coasts such as Cancun, should be getting highs of around 82F (28C) and lows of 66F (19C) with occasional showers. Mexico is not too busy in February and the Yucatan peninsula is scattered with magnificent ancient sites a day trip from Maya Riviera beaches, such as Chichen Itza and Uxmal, great snorkelling and diving, fantastic food, exotic drinks and all at bargain prices.

Myanmar (aka Burma)

Beaches along the Bay of Bengal such as Ngapali Beach, Chaung Tha Beach and Ngwe Sau.

Visitors arriving by ferryboat from Palawan on White Beach, Boracay island, Philippines. Photo by choi2451

Visitors arriving by ferryboat from Palawan on White Beach, Boracay island, Philippines. Photo by choi2451

Philippines is a very good value destination populated by lovely people (apart from certain individuals in government) and offering some magnificent tropical beaches tho’ not often easy to get to. For example White Beach on Boracay Island is coated with exceptionally white, soft sand that never gets hot, fringed by palm trees and  a large number of small, friendly hotels/bars/restaurants. But you have to fly to the nearby island of Palawan and catch a banca or small ferry boat to get there, which may involve jumping off into shallow-ish water off White Beach.

Also:

–  Honda Bay, Palawan, Philippines. An area of outstanding natural beauty.

– Malapascua Island, Cebu. Relatively unknown but highly rated on the world’s best beach/dive.

– Muelle Bay, Puerto Galera, Mindoro Island. An ideal place to do island-hopping on to pristine beaches.

Mui Ne, near Phan Thiet, is a resort area known for its spectacular sand dunes and low prices.

– Hon Chong Beach, Ha Tien; a seductive beach near the Cambodian border.

– Bai Tam (Long Beach), Phu Quoc Island. The secret jewel of Southeast Asia.

– Palau, the Rock Islands known for their coral rock formations, colourful underwater life and stunning beaches. It is a great destination for snorkelling and diving.

Beaches that are not a good idea in February

The worst time for much of the Pacific but there are bright spots. e. g. SE Australia, Mexico and California (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. Check Pacific beaches for more information.

Bali’s best beaches range from big, busy and easy to reach but lacking in character  (Kuta/Legian/Seminyak) to awesome surf and swimming beaches with character (such as Bingin and Padang Padang) and calm upscale resorts with outdoor dining, but not from December to February due to rain.

No chance! The weather’s cold, beach services are non-existant – even in southern Spain or Greece – and the sea is colder.

Ile Sainte Marie. An idyllic island resort fringed by peaceful beaches, though the cyclone season is from February to March.