Crystal Clear: The wishlist-worthy beaches that always deliver, whether you crave adventure, wellness or pure relaxation
Best for fantasy beaches and a health hit: The Maldives
Nature is at her finest in the Maldives where you’re surrounded by crystal-clear waters and lush palm trees
The crystalline lagoons, pristine beaches and overwater villas in the Maldives have long topped bucket lists, and new hotel Joali Being has put the destination on the map for health-conscious holidaymakers, too.
Surrounded by ethereal lagoons and brimming with lush coconut palms, the goal is for guests to return home feeling renewed, uplifted and inspired.
Embrace the zen of the island and enjoy the daily sunset ritual on ivory sands, meditate above the tranquil waves, explore sound therapy in the indigenous forest and tuck into the locally sourced vegan cuisine. joali.com/joalibeing
Best for those who want it all: St Lucia
One sweet getaway – Sugar Beach, St Lucia is popular with adventurous travellers as well as those looking to relax
St Lucia offers the classic, luxury Caribbean escape, from idyllic beaches to beautiful bays – but with plenty for the restless traveller, too, including zip-lining, hiking and watersports. For the most picture-perfect base, head to Sugar Beach.
It sits on the site of an old sugar plantation, within acres of rainforest in the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Val des Pitons and has all the 18th-century colonial charm that St Lucia is known for. The hotel, its rooms and restaurants look out over the crystal-clear waters of Pitons Bay. Sugar Beach, from £401 a night. viceroyhotelsandresorts.com/sugar-beach
Best for adventure: The Galápagos Islands
The Galapagos Islands, home to a dizzying array of wildlife you won’t find anywhere else
Off the coast of Ecuador, the Galápagos Islands’ geographical location at the junction of three ocean currents makes it one of the richest marine ecosystems in the world.
The islands are not just home to an incredible array of plant and animal species, many of which are not found anywhere else in the world, but home to one of the best beaches in the world, too.
Gardner Bay, on the eastern shore of Española Island, is more than white sand and sparkling water. It’s home to the endemic mockingbird as well as colonies of sea lions, marine iguanas and blue-footed boobies.