Big Five Beaches

With its eastern coastline skirting the Indian Ocean, Africa’s beaches are as stunning as you can imagine yet paradoxically often overlooked. Home to paradisiacal stretches of sand which span as far as the eye can see, turquoise blue waters teeming with marine life and a host of unique properties, Africa is a standout beach destination. From freshwater lakes to tiny atolls, we’ve collated our favourite beaches, just perfect for kicking off your flip flops and relaxing under a shady palm.

Big Five Beaches
Bazaruto Island, Mozambique
Bazaruto Archipelago, Mozambique

Bazaruto, the largest isle in the Bazaruto archipelago, is a haven for sun worshippers. Its dune backed shoreline is lapped by the turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean, making it a paradise for snorkellers and scuba divers alike. Teeming with marine life, the waters are home to rare dugongs, whale sharks and even humpback whales which can be spotted from on board a private dhow. Its seclusion, yet easy access from the Mozambican mainland, confirm it as one of our best beaches.

Snorkelling, Kaya Mawa
Kaya Mawa, Malawi

Located on the tiny Likoma Island, in the middle of Lake Malawi, the resort of Kaya Mawa is renowned for its seclusion. It is the perfect retreat to add on to the end of a safari itinerary in Malawi or elsewhere in Africa, rivalling the coastal experience of the Indian Ocean. It offers real relaxation on a beach which is arguably like nowhere else in the world, thanks to its sought after location on Malawi's largest lake. While away lazy days discovering the island’s rocky coves and sandy beaches or enjoying the many water sports on offer at Kaya Mawa resort.

Turtle beach, Watamu in Kenya
Watamu, Kenya

Watamu is a small coastal town just north of the bustling city of Mombasa. Home to the Watamu Marine National Park, it is a haven for scuba diving, boasting vibrant reefs, bountiful marine life and an array of colourful fish. The coastline is flanked by mangrove forests, which support a diverse ecosystem, yet characterised by its pristine white beaches. Medina Palms offers beachfront accommodation, fantastic water sports and a brilliant kids club to keep the whole family entertained.

Beach in Zanzibar
Baraza Resort, Zanzibar

Zanzibar is often considered to be the ultimate tropical paradise, and rightly so. Baraza Resort is a palm fringed, postcard perfect destination, which encapsulates the very best of Zanzibar with its influences hailing from its Arabic, Indian and Swahili heritage. Set on a beautiful stretch of beach, it is the perfect final port of call to reminisce about a safari adventure in neighbouring Tanzania or simply relax on a retreat in the sunshine.

Miavana Island, Madagascar
Miavana, Madagascar

Miavana has raised the bar for luxury accommodation in the Indian Ocean. Located on the remote island of Nosy Ankao off the north-eastern coast of Madagascar, this resort is the perfect option to combine a wildlife adventure with beach relaxation. Madagascar’s world famous wildlife is in abundance here and the reefs which skirt the island are as untouched as they are unexplored. Miavana embodies ultimate relaxation, yet also offers a host of activities to try too, including whale watching, diving, jet skis, deep-sea fishing.

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