The most beautiful beaches in Spain and Portugal are the ones that get less tourism. For example, there is a beach on the Costa de la Luz called Cabo Roche, located in southeastern Spain. It’s only about an hour from Gibraltar and offers some of the most stunning views on Earth. You can see Morocco off to one side and France across the Strait of Gibraltar. The water temperature ranges from 18-24 degrees Celsius, so you don’t need to worry too much about wearing tons of clothes to stay warm!
The island of Menorca offers a few different beaches that are worth mentioning. There is a place called Es Grau in the northwest corner, which has golden sand and shallow water perfect for families. To the South East, you have Cala Macarelleta, one of the most breathtaking spots in all of Spain. You can read more about this beach here.
Portugal’s Azores Islands:
The Azores Islands are another spectacular location to visit if you’re looking for somewhere off the beaten path! One of the best spots within the islands is Silveira Beach (pictured above), located on Sao Miguel Island. There are many other unique options like Povoação Beach, Lagoa das Furnas, and many more. You can see a list of all the beaches in Portugal on this website.
A few eyes have been drawn to Wales as of late for some great reasons—the gorgeous coastline! In particular, there is an area called Gower Peninsula that has been featured on some television shows. It’s home to three different locations, each with its unique qualities. While it’s not the most popular destination in the world yet, you might be able to find a spot without too much trouble!
Praia de Ondarre is located just outside of Bilbao and offers stunning scenery. The sand is soft and light brown, and the water has blue undertones, which make for a surprisingly warm summertime visit! You can read more about this place here.
The Alentejo region covers roughly 154 thousand kilometers squared, so there’s bound to be at least one beach within the area that meets your discerning standards! One good example is Praia do Porto Covo Beach—it’s one of the cleanest beaches in all of Portugal and is famous for its almond trees and the different types of fish that can be found nearby.
If you’re looking for a more mountainous experience, then head over to Galicia, located northwest of Spain. One location that offers spectacular scenery is Ria de Aldan, which some have described as “heaven on Earth.” Alongside this fantastic beach, you’ll also find the historic Puerto de Cotos, once a Celtic settlement! You can read more about it here.
If we want to get specific, we should include Spain too (maybe these beaches are slightly better known than some of the ones we mentioned above). In Cadiz, there is a spot called Playa de la Victoria, which is located in Conil. It’s around 300 meters long and has white sand alongside crystal clear water. While it’s close to one of Spain’s busiest cities, you probably won’t find too many people out on most days!
Another location that doesn’t get mentioned too often among travelers is Crete. In particular, one beach due east from Heraklion stands out among the crowd—Balos Beach. This area is thought to be one of the most beautiful beaches in all of Europe, so you might want to put it on your list!
If you’re looking for an off-the-beaten-path experience that has a bit more adventure involved, then Corsica may be perfect for you! Within the island, there are spectacular beaches like Spiaggia de Manganello, located near Santa Giulia. The water here is emerald, and the sand is made up of shells and rocks, making it quite different from other experiences within France or Italy! You can read more about this place here.
Praia Do Zavial: For those of you looking for something a bit more out there, then head over to Portugal and check out the Praia Do Zavial Beach. Located in Odeceixe, this beach is quite popular among surfers and has been compared to one of Hawaii’s beaches! For those who aren’t big on surfing, you can still enjoy wading through the water alongside sunbathing.
Another good beach option within Portugal is the Madeira Islands, where you’ll be able to find some stunning views—and better yet, it’s free if you’re interested in traveling off-the-beaten-path! If you head towards Funchal, there will be a place called Lido, which resembles a Caribbean vibe (there are dunes to climb alongside the beach too). If you’re interested, then it’s worth checking out!
One of the most exotic beaches in all of Europe is, without a doubt, located within France! While it’s not as popular among tourists (mainly because it doesn’t receive very many visitors), Camargue Beach offers something different you might need to wear mosquito repellant.
However, if you don’t mind this inconvenience, then you’ll enjoy taking in sights like flamingos and white horses that roam freely throughout the area! You can read more about this location here.
Finally, one last option that doesn’t get mentioned too often is Slovenia —in particular, we’ll discuss the coastline. For those who want to take a trip off the beaten path and avoid crowds, then head over to Izola, where you’ll find a quiet beach called Strunjan, which is excellent for visitors who want to stay away from crowded areas.
There may not be many amenities here (like bars or restaurants), but this location does offer a fantastic view of the Mediterranean Sea that won’t disappoint! You can read more about it here if interested.
While some European destinations like France and Italy attract hordes of tourists every year (and rightfully so), there are plenty of other locations that receive much less traffic yet still have spectacular views. If you’re interested in traveling on a budget, then these lesser-known places may be perfect for you!
Playa de Las Catedrales, Galicia, Spain:
Another underrated destination in the European Union is the country of Spain, where you’ll find plenty of sights along its coastline. If you’re interested in seeing different sites that boast excellent views, then Playa de Las Catedrales should be at the top of your list! While it’s free to get here through a dirt road, very few people travel here, making it perfect for those who are looking for something not too popular.
Praia Do Zavial Beach outside Odeceixe/Aljezur:
Yet another location within Portugal is Praia Do Zavial Beach—this beach boasts white sand alongside emerald green water that resembles Hawaii more than anything else! Even there aren’t any amenities around, the site still attracts plenty of surfers who are willing to walk here from miles away.
Praia Da Ursa, Near Baleal:
Another beach within Portugal is Praia Da Ursa, which can be found near Baleal. While it’s not as quiet as Zavial Beach (located in Odeceixe), this location still offers something special that you’ll unlikely find elsewhere.
Gruta Do Escoural:
Yet another underrated spot lies not too far away in Gruta Do Escoural—this grotto was created through erosion by the sea and houses a dark blueish turquoise lake inside. You can read more about it here if interested in taking a look!
Ribeira D’Ilhas, Sao Joao de Areias:
Located within Portugal (specifically, Ribeira D’Ilhas), this beach is often visited by surfers and offers a beautiful view of the Atlantic Ocean! You can read more about it here if you’re interested in visiting.
If you’re looking for a new European destination that doesn’t get too much attention, then head to one of these more off-the-beaten-path locations. These lesser-known beaches are perfect for travelers who want something different and don’t mind some mosquitoes along the way! If you have any questions about this blog post or would like help implementing some of our suggestions in your marketing strategy, please reach out anytime. We’d love to partner with you on creating an amazing digital marketing plan that converts casual visits into sales by understanding how your customers think at each stage within their purchasing process. Which cognitive neuroscience principles did you find most helpful? Let us know in the comments below!