Beaches You Must Visit Before Dying

Red Beach Vieques Puerto Rico

My body and soul crave being on beaches. I break up with a boy, I run to the beach to cry or yell at myself for being with him in the first place. If I need to map out my career plans, I go to the beach for inspiration.

Nicaragua Surfing

That is me surfing

All it takes is feeling the sand underneath my feet and hearing the sound of waves crashing to melt away anything I’m dealing with at the time.

It’s slightly odd that the beach is my happy spot because it’s not like I can swim. I can however surf as a result of one trip to Nicaragua when they didn’t ask if I could swim so I didn’t tell. Luckily I can doggie paddle better than most, which has also saved me a few times.

As a self-proclaimed beach addict, I’ve been known to travel for sand. And if there is sand, cheap travel, good food and cute guys, I’ve found my paradise. But what’s the point of finding paradise if you can’t share it with others so they can see what they are missing?

Prepare to be jealous or remember what was probably one of your best beach trips.


Silk Cayes, Placencia (Belize) 

A 45-minute boat ride from Placencia, these two little islands will give you an ideal of what life would be like on a deserted island. If you’re adventurous or slightly crazy like me you can also snorkel with sharks and stingrays. I will say this was one of the best snorkeling experiences to date.

Silk Cayes_Belize_Beaches


Santa Maria de Leuca, Puglia (Italy) 

If I wrote La Vita e Bella, it would be about life in Puglia, the heel of Italy. Most tourists sleep on Puglia as a vacation destination and they are missing out on some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. It’s tough to decide the top out of many of my favorite beaches, but Santa Maria de Leuca probably has a slight edge over the others.

Located on the southernmost tip of the Salento peninsula where the Adriatic meets the Ionian Sea, Santa Maria de Leuca has a stunning coastline with its turquoise water and white sand. Visit once and you’ll easily understand why it’s nicknamed the ‘Maldives of Puglia.’


santa_maria_di_leuca_italy beaches


Palomino Island, Fajardo (Puerto Rico)

This private island is part of the El Conquistador Hotel located an hour east of San Juan. I like to think of this place as deserted island meets luxury adventure as Palomino Island offers many amenities including hiking, water sports, horseback riding and miniature golf to name a few. Or you can simply sit under one of the many palm trees with drinks and good food served to you from the comfort of your lounge chair. The El Conquistidor isn’t the cheapest hotel, but luckily they offer non-hotel guests day passes to experience the magic of Palomino Island.

Palomino Island beaches


Pemba Island (Zanzibar)

I’ve never been to Zanzibar, but it is high on my list for beaches I must see before I die. In particular I want to go to Pemba Island, which is 100km from Zanzibar Island. I’ve heard many people rave about its unspoiled natural beauty with its mangroves, forests and hidden beaches, causing me to be green with envy.

FransPeeters_4495_PembaIsland_ beaches


Honorable Mentions

  • Playa Caracas, Vieques (Puerto Rico)
  • Paraga, Mykonos (Greece)
  • San Blas (Panama)




An eclectic, world traveling sista from San Francisco expressing 'Rogue-Thoughts' on food, travel, music, fashion and living an authentic life unapologetically.


  • Reply June 21, 2016

    Leah Woodly

    I would LOVE to visit each and every one of these. Great list. #BLMGirls

    • Reply June 23, 2016

      Danielle D. Washington

      Thanks Leah for the support and you totally should visit all of these.

  • Reply June 22, 2016


    Love this list. I wanted to visit Belize but couldn’t figure out where to stay. Thanks for the tip. #blmgirls

    • Reply June 23, 2016

      Danielle D. Washington

      It was tough figuring out where I wanted to go, but I so thankful I ended up in Placencia. It felt like I had my very own deserted island and then I got to really go to one. I can’t wait to go back!

  • Reply June 22, 2016


    So many beautiful places to travel in this world!

  • Reply June 24, 2016


    Yes! Snorkeling with the sharks and rays in Belize, I did it off of Caye Caulker, was one of the best things ever.

    Panama is high on my list.

    Another favorite beach was Playa Norte on Isla Mujeres, off the coast of Cancun. A postcard beach! Further down the coast, the waters off Playa del Carmen were warmer but not as clear.

    Oh and Kata Beach, Phuket, Thailand.

    • Reply June 25, 2016

      Danielle D. Washington

      I was cool with swimming with the sharks and rays until our guide started messing with them. With my lack of swimming skills I would be the first one to go. That aside, thanks for offering other places to check out as I’m ALWAYS looking for beach recommendations. 😉

  • […] Beaches You Must Visit Before Dying […]

Leave a Reply