12 Best Black Sand Beaches In The World
Beach vacations are best, especially if the beach you’re lounging on is jet black. Often caused by volcanic rocks, the unique black color found on beaches worldwide is a massive draw for tourists looking to add to the glamor of their vacation.
The black sand beaches are inspiring and picturesque. Whether in countries like Hawaii, Greece, Spain, or Indonesia, these stunning threads invite travelers to update their Instagram pages with enviable shots while enjoying serene landscapes and exciting activities (we’re talking swimming, surfing, sailing, and snorkeling, to name just a few).
We know that you expect to have a good time lounging by the sea, which is why we have chosen to highlight the black sand beaches that are not only beautiful but comfortable enough to enjoy for a day. Book your next beach vacation with the help of our list of the best black sand beaches in the world.
What beaches have black sand?
Black sand on the beaches is rare and unique, so these beaches attract thousands of tourists each year.
Some of the best-known black sand beaches are Lafayette Beach in Tahiti, Playa Jardin in the Canary Islands, Punalu’u Beach in Hawaii, Spiaggia di Ficogrande Beach in Italy, and Kamari Beach in Greece.
1. Lafayette Beach, Tahiti
Have you ever wanted to leave black footprints in the sand? Head to the islands of the South Pacific. You’ll find black sand in abundance in Tahiti, which is home to Lafayette Beach. An extraordinary beach, famous for its ink-colored base and green cliffs, this is a lovely place to lounge all day.
The charcoal black sand makes a phenomenal backdrop for photos and is so soft your feet will sink straight in. Although not the turquoise you would expect from the region (the sable sand makes the ocean appear much darker), the water here is warm enough to attract bathers to spend hours splashing around.
Lafayette Beach is located in Matavai Bay, on the northwest side of the island, near the city of Papeete. A bit further east, you will find Point Vénus Beach, another black sand beach worth visiting.
2. Playa Jardín, Canary Islands
Located in the north of Tenerife, Playa Jardín offers visitors a quiet respite from the tourist bustle of Puerto de la Cruz. This ink wonderland is a well-loved and incredibly well-planned piece of paradise on one of Spain’s finest islands.
They were designed in the early 20th century by the renowned Canarian artist César Manrique, this strand charm overflows. The green gardens burst with colorful flowers, while waterfalls and palm trees guide tourists past the stone walls to coal-black sand.
Most come to enjoy the vibrant blue surf, which contrasts perfectly with the ebony. Shoreline. Protected by a side breakwater, the waves are optimal for bodyboarding and surfing in open areas.
It’s easy to spend a whole day by the beach. There are lifeguards on duty, and there is a playground for the kids and many on-site amenities.
Suggestion: Pack water shoes to protect yourself from the rocks.
3. Punalu’u Beach, Hawaii
You won’t be alone when you visit Punalu’u Beach on thesoutheastern shore of the Big Island of Hawaii. While there are likely other tourists out there who appreciate its shiny, coal-black sand, your main competitors for a comfortable place to stay are likely to include hawksbill turtles and green turtles.
Keep your interaction with these endangered beauties to a minimum. They are protected, so visitors cannot approach within 15 feet. With so much to explore on this expansive beach, you won’t mind keeping your distance. Don’t miss a visit to the near Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
Black sand can be a bit rocky due to the volcanic rock which gives it that beautiful dark color. Also, be careful with the water, the current is quite strong here. Visit at low tide and observe the interesting creatures that appear in the tidal pools.
4. Kamari Beach, Greece
Talk approximately a picturesque place. The black sands of Kamari Beach circulate the whitewashed hotel city of the equal call at the southeast coast of Santorini.
This volcanic island’s essential black sand seashores, Kamari Beach, gives a stunning view of the towering Mesa Vouno. The seaside is covered with solar loungers and umbrellas, which are a magnet for many tourists.
Its recognition comes with perks withinside the shape of water sports activities, apartment companies, restaurants, cafes, and shops. During the summer, lifeguards defend swimmers withinside the relatively calm blue water. As with maximum black sand seashores, you may need to wear footwear to protect your toes from the new rocks and pebbles strewn throughout the sand.
5. Spiaggia di Ficogrande, Italy
One of the most significant benefits of having a volcano on your island comes in the form of inky black beaches. Take Stromboli, for example. This photogenic Aeolian Island filled with ebony sand, the most popular of which is Spiaggia di Ficogrande.
Like Kamari, the fame of this Italian beach comes with a few perks: concession stands, water sports equipment rentals, lounges, and umbrellas (for a fee). Sandwiched between the deep blue of the Tyrrhenian Sea and the lush peak of volcanic rock, Strombolicchio, this beach is a photographer’s dream setting.
Recognized as a Blue Flag beach (meaning it is accessible and meets high environmental standards), Ficogrande is remarkably clean with super clear water. It’s easy to lose track of time on this clean and comfortable strand.
6. Lovina Beach, Bali
It’s easy to relax on Lovina Beach, an ebony beach on the northwestern tip of Bali. This 12-kilometer stretch of volcanic sand, which runs along with seven small towns, is vast. Its prime location means that you will find small shops and restaurants nearby.
Less popular than the best beaches in Bali (i.e., Kuta, Amed, and Jimbaran Bay), Lovina Beach offers visitors a quiet place to relax without fighting the crowds. Another plus: the smaller waves make swimming safer for those traveling with children.
Snorkeling and dolphin watching are the two most popular activities at Lovina Beach, which means you can enjoy Bali’s best features, its underwater creatures, with ease. It is known that groups of dolphins play in the waves near the shore.
Tip: Pack snorkeling gear as a vibrant reef sits close to the sand.
7. Karekare Beach, New Zealand
A jet-black beach Located 35 kilometers southwest of Auckland, Karekare Beach is a much-loved beauty on New Zealand’s northwest coast. More secluded than Piha’s most popular beach, which is just a 12-minute drive north, Karekare is said to be even prettier.
The black sand glows in the sun, while the volcanic base gives off an eerie, otherworldly glow on cloudy days. In Karekare Regional Park, this rugged, wild beauty is near a waterfall and features black dunes and phenomenal views.
It is a fabulous place for surfers due to the epic waves. Swimming isn’t the safest thing to do, but you won’t mind, as you’ll probably have the beach to yourself, and you can cool off by dipping your toes in the water.
Speaking of toes, wear shoes! Black sand retains heat, which makes it quite hot during the summer. If you hope to visit during the spring, it will help you warm up.
8. Black Sand Beach, California
I bet you didn’t know there was a black sand beach in the United States. Aptly named Black Sands Beach, this dark beauty is located in California’s King Range National Conservation Area. It is located at the southern end of the 20-mile-long shoreline that runs between Shelter Cove and Camp on the Mattole River.
If you are looking to build a sandcastle, this beach is not for you. The base is made up mostly of black pebbles, not sand, so you’ll want to keep your shoes on. That said, this quiet strand is a nice reward for those willing to go down (and back up) a long ladder.
You can walk the Lost Coast Trail from this beach to find campsites or explore the shoreline, searching for treasures as the tide goes out. Do not take anything home, or you will face a fine – the area is protected. Swimming is also possible, as long as you know the time of the tide.
9. Anse Chastanet, Saint Lucia, Caribbean
It’s hard to find a more beautiful place than Anse Chastanet in western Saint Lucia. Part of the Anse Chastanet Resort in Soufriere and open to the public, this ink-colored beach is a photographer’s dream. Tall palm trees greet you, offering a respite from the blazing sun as lush hills and mountains rise in the distance.
Located within a marine reserve, this beach offers the best snorkeling and diving on the island, one of the best things to do in Saint Lucia. There’s an on-site dive shop for easy rentals, and the calm, clear water makes swimming and exploring the vibrant underwater world a breeze.
This is not the only black sand beach on the island. Due to its volcanic composition, you will find some beautiful dark beaches to visit while you are here.
Cas en Bas Beach is a more secluded option in the north, pristine Anse Cochon sits between Soufriere and Castries, and Anse L’Ivrogne sits in a deep, hidden cove on the west coast.
10. Number One Beach, Dominica, Caribbean
Expect to get muddy on your way to North Dominica’s number one beach. You have to walk about 15 minutes through dense jungle to get here, but once you see this ethereal place of saber, you’ll be glad you did the hike.
You won’t find any comforts on this rugged black sand beach, so ride the inviting (albeit sometimes rough) waves to wash off the mud. Then settle down on the soft, dark sand for a picnic. If you schedule your visit well (that is, between April and June), you will see the turtles coming ashore to lay eggs.
Mangroves, sea grapes surround the beach, and coconut trees to recover the sand. The high cliffs dwarf the beach, adding to the area’s mysterious appeal.
11. Playa Negra, Puerto Rico
The sand of Playa Negra on Vieques is an impressive mix of honey brown and black due to the volcanic runoff from the island that combines with the grains of the rocky cliffs. Also known as Playa Negrita (Little Black Beach), this gorgeous beach is remote and spectacularly beautiful, dotted with spectacular driftwood.
The best time to visit is at low tide; you will have more sand to enjoy. Unlike other rockier beaches on this list, Playa Negra has fine sand that makes it easy to walk along the shore. It also contrasts dramatically with the aquamarine waves of the Caribbean and the tanned cliffs.
Visitors to this pretty black sand beach in Puerto Rico can often stroll the 10-kilometer strip alone, as this is not one of the most popular beaches on the island.
12. Perissa Beach, Greece
Santorini never fails to disappoint when it comes to fabulous scenery. The beautiful dark beach of Perissa is an excellent example of the innate beauty found on this Greek island. Located near the town of Fira, near the ancient ruins of Thira, this is a wonderful place to relax.
The contrast with the crystal clear the Aegean Sea and the phenomenal views of Mount Vouno make this an extraordinary place to spend a day.
If you are looking for a quiet retreat, visit during the off-season, when the beach is less crowded. Its proximity to shops and restaurants, and amenities (i.e., chair and umbrella rentals, restrooms, and volleyball courts) make it a popular vacation destination.
When visiting, plan to keep your shoes off, especially if it is a particularly sunny day. Being a black beach, the sand can get quite hot.
Frequently Asked Questions: Best Black Sand Beaches
What beach has the blackest sand?
Its remote beauty is incredible. It has one of the blackest sands known on any of the beaches on this list. Also, the beach is surrounded by jutting headlands and rocky cliffs that set it apart from anything else on earth.
All these beaches have black sand. Of all the beaches in the world, these 20 beaches are unique in their way due to their dark sands.
Is black sand beach swimmable?
You can find space for parking, a picnic area and restroom facilities at the beach, as well as an outdoor shower in the beach area. Punaluʻu is a good place for swimming, taking in the sun and snorkeling (turtles!)
What beaches in the US have black sand?
Located on Hawaii’s Big Island, Punalu’u Beach is frequented by sunbathers — and endangered turtles and seals. This black-sand beach gets its dark hue from years of volcanic activity that has laced its sand with lava fragments.
Where are the 4 green sand beaches in the world?
If you go to Wikipedia, you will see that there are only 4 green sand beaches in the world: Talofofo Beach on Guam. Punta Cormorant on Floreana Island in the Galapagos Islands. Hornindalsvatnet in Norway.
Is there a black sand beach in Florida?
Florida’s Venice Beach gives views that rival those of Santorini all on U.S. soil. Venice Beach’s black sand may just be the new bae – whisking us away over the sea to Santorini, Greece. It’s even known as ‘The Sharktooth Capitol of the World’ for those who love hunting for a souvenir to take home.
Why does the Philippines have black sand?
The Philippines has a few provinces that are near volcanoes; this resulted in some shorelines lined with dark and/or ashen sand. These may not get as much attention as their white beach counterparts, but they are beautiful nonetheless.
Why does Tenerife have black sand?
Most of the beaches in Tenerife are black sand beaches due to the volcanos in the area. Over the years, due to many volcanic eruptions, the ocean crushed the volcanic rocks into fine black sand. There are also a few golden sand beaches in Tenerife such as Las Teresitas Beach and El Duque Beach.
Are black sand beaches hot?
The sand is compositionally immature meaning that it is very vulnerable to weathering and breaks down easily. Something to think about- make sure you wear shoes on the black sand beaches because they are considerably hotter than white sand beaches.
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