World's Best Boardwalks

It's a summertime tradition: joining locals and tourists for a stroll along some of the world's prettiest waterfronts. You'll pass crashing waves and stunning coastline views, eat candy and other local grub, and then scream and giggle on amusement rides

Looking for more boardwalks? Take a look at these photos of the best boardwalks in the US.  

Photos

Sexiest Beach: Miami

Sexiest Beach: Miami

You don’t have to leave the East Coast to slip away to this year’s Sexiest Beach. An easy getaway from New York, Miami has everything you need, according to Sports Illustrated swimsuit model Nina Agdal: “soft sand, beautiful warm water, interesting people, volleyball and fun spots to go for a bite or a beverage nearby.” Plus, “it’s acceptable to wear tiny bikinis,” she says. Whether you’re reveling in South Beach’s legendary nightlife or sleeping off the night before in a private cabana, Miami is the place for hot days and nights. 960 1280

photosvit/iStock/Getty Images, photosvit  

Best Unusual Beach: Red Beach, Santorini, Greece

Best Unusual Beach: Red Beach, Santorini, Greece

Named the “No. 1 most spectacular getaway on Earth” on Travel Channel’s 101 Sand n’ Surf Hotspots, Santorini’s Red Beach is also the Best Unusual Beach, thanks to its striking crimson and black volcanic sands. “Set off by the deep indigo waters, there’s really nothing like it,” says Sara Gilliam, senior producer for TravelChannel.com. “To do Santorini justice, check in to a chalky cave house built into the lip of the volcanic crater and catch an unrivaled sunset over the whitewashed buildings and blue-domed churches.” 960 1280

stockstudioX/iStock/Getty Images  

Best Romantic Beach: Little Dix Bay, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands

Best Romantic Beach: Little Dix Bay, Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands

“The crescent-shaped beach at Little Dix Bay is the epitome of barefoot elegance, with its palm-lined half-mile of white sand,” says luxury travel writer Tamala Prickett, founder of Chic Family Travels. Characterized by pristine, private beaches, exclusive yacht clubs, hidden coves and luxurious resorts, the island invites romance — and you’ll find it’s worth the price. Check into the 5-star Rosewood Resort, which was originally owned by Laurance Rockefeller, and you’ll discover why the timeless romantic retreat has earned a fiercely loyal following. “It’s common to see couples having a candlelit dinner on the beach arranged by the excellent hotel staff,” Tamala says. “It’s a scene right out of the The Bachelor.” 960 1280

gionnixxx/iStock/Getty Images  

Best Beach for Adventure: Praia do Futuro, Fortaleza, Brazil

Best Beach for Adventure: Praia do Futuro, Fortaleza, Brazil

Characterized as one of the windiest places in the world, Fortaleza draws extreme-sports enthusiasts from across the globe. “Whether you're a kite surfer, windsurfer or someone who just wants to be close to the action, Futuro Beach will not disappoint,” says professional kite surfer Chris DuComb. “On a daily basis, athletes reach speeds of over 40 mph and boost over 100 feet in the air.” On the off chance the wind isn't blowing, you'll find athletes and beachgoers congregating at the many sand volleyball courts. 960 1280

Edmar Moreira/Moment Open/Getty Images   

Best Beach Bar: Vice, also known as Nissakia Surf Club, Artemida, Greece

Best Beach Bar: Vice, also known as Nissakia Surf Club, Artemida, Greece

“In Artemida, Greece, a seaside town better known to locals as Loutsa, Vice is an epic beach bar situated on one of the most active shorelines in the country,” says Chris DuComb. You won't find many tourists at Vice, which is tucked away about 15 miles outside Athens, but you’ll be met with a serene coastline and mountainous backdrop. The bar features local dishes such as grilled octopus and spins the most current, upbeat music, adding to the lively atmosphere. “Local kite surfers and windsurfers frequent this hidden gem for the warm water, local food and delicious drinks,” Chris says. 960 1280

s-eyerkaufer/iStock/Getty Images  

Best Beach You Haven't Heard of ... Yet: Lake Atitlán, Guatemala

Best Beach You Haven't Heard of ... Yet: Lake Atitlán, Guatemala

The best under-the-radar beach does not find itself alongside an ocean, but the most beautiful lake in the world. Situated in the highlands of Guatemala, Lake Atitlán is Central America’s deepest lake. “Nestled in the valley of 3 volcanoes (one of them still active), you’ll not only take in peaceful volcanic views, but also absorb the vibrant pink, yellow and blue colors of the surrounding vegetation,” says Sara Gilliam. “In fact, Atitlán is Mayan for ‘where the rainbow gets its colors.’” 960 1280

Matthew Stallone/Moment/Getty Images  

Best Beach Boardwalk: Coney Island, New York

Best Beach Boardwalk: Coney Island, New York

If you don’t consider a boardwalk a boardwalk without kitschy shops and Atlantic Ocean views, than Coney Island is your quintessential American beach boardwalk. With extensive renovations in 2010 (in Luna Park) and 2012 (after Hurricane Sandy), Coney Island has returned to its former glory. “Bring the family and enjoy rides, fireworks, shows and plenty of food all summer long,” says Sarah Fazendin, family travel blogger at A Week at the Beach. Coney Island manages to feel like a seaside escape and yet quintessentially New York. 960 1280

thepurpledoor/Moment/Getty Images   

Best Family Beach: Seaside, Florida

Best Family Beach: Seaside, Florida

“Seaside is a beach community located near Destin, but it could not be more different in its features,” says Tamala Prickett. In place of high-rise condos, you’ll find pastel-colored houses lined with white picket fences and beach cruisers. “Families love to vacation in Seaside, as it is commonplace for children to jump on a bike to grab snow cones from an Airstream trailer on the way to the beach,” Tamala says. As night falls, families cover the amphitheater with picnic blankets to enjoy outdoor movies and live music. 960 1280

iStockphoto.com/MoreISO  

Best Party Beach: La Barra, Punta del Este, Uruguay

Best Party Beach: La Barra, Punta del Este, Uruguay

This lush getaway spot, which used to attract the likes of Brigitte Bardot and the Rat Pack, is still bringing the party. “Rage with socialites and celebs alike at Bikini Beach in La Barra, Uruguay,” says Marianela Pereyra, host of Marianela’s Best Beaches. “With a name like that, expect lots of skimpy tops and supermodel bodies blessed with perfect tans.” This small strip of sand in Punta’s trendiest neighborhood is known for its upscale, 24-hour fiesta, where no one finds a siesta necessary and the beautiful landscape keeps you going long after the sun goes down (or comes up!). 960 1280

Miguel Rojo/AFP/Getty Images  

Best Exotic Beach: Ilhabela, Brazil

Best Exotic Beach: Ilhabela, Brazil

Ilhabela, Portuguese for “beautiful island,” is Brazil's largest island and a coastal Atlantic rain forest filled with more than 400 waterfalls, mountain peaks, incredible wildlife and tropical fauna. “It's without a doubt one of the most beautiful natural paradises,” says Marianela Pereyra. About 85% of the island is designated as Ilhabela State Park, which includes a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve to protect the ecosystem. Beyond Ilhabela’s natural beauty, tourists revel in its popular sailing week, exploring underwater wrecks and the legends of pirate treasure. 960 1280

SambaPhoto/Paulo Fridman/Getty Images  

Esperanza (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)

Esperanza (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)

Esperanza, an award-winning luxury resort in Los Cabos, has a beautiful location overlooking the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean.
960 1280

Esperanza, An Auberge Resort  

Esperanza (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)

Esperanza (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)

All the rooms at Esperanza have ocean views. The hotel is located at the tip of Punta Ballena ("Whale Point”), and in the winter months you might spot the migrating humpback whales from your private veranda.
960 1280

Esperanza, An Auberge Resort  

Nizuc Resort and Spa (Cancun, Mexico)

Nizuc Resort and Spa (Cancun, Mexico)

With a prime location at the gateway to the Riviera Maya, the Nizuc Resort and Spa has unique Mayan-inspired therapies and private white-sand beaches make it a tranquil haven.
960 1280

Nizuc Resort & Spa  

One & Only Palmilla (Los Cabos, Mexico)

One & Only Palmilla (Los Cabos, Mexico)

This oasis on the tip of the Baja Peninsula was built in the 1950s as a 15-room luxury hideaway for the jet-set crowd. Now it’s expanded to over 115 rooms, but the One & Only Palmilla still feels glamorous and secluded.
960 1280

One&Only   

One & Only Palmilla Sanctuary (Los Cabos, Mexico)

One & Only Palmilla Sanctuary (Los Cabos, Mexico)

You will be treated like a celebrity at this beachfront sanctuary. The exceptional service includes personal butlers, luggage unpacking and a pillow and aromatherapy turndown menu.
960 1280

One&Only   

Fairmont Acapulco Princess (Acapulco, Mexico)

Fairmont Acapulco Princess (Acapulco, Mexico)

Tucked away in Acapulco's tropical oasis, the Fairmont Princess, a 15-story Aztec-pyramid-shaped hotel, is surrounded by lush gardens, a saltwater lagoon, a golf course and more.
960 1280

Leonardo Worldwide Corporation  

Fairmont Acapulco Princess (Acapulco, Mexico)

Fairmont Acapulco Princess (Acapulco, Mexico)

There's not a bad table at the resort’s Beach Club, an open-air bar and restaurant located right on the beach.
960 1280

Leonardo Worldwide Corporation  

Fairmont Princess, outdoor pool, Acapulco, Mexico

Fairmont Princess, outdoor pool, Acapulco, Mexico

Soak up the picture-perfect weather by one of the resort’s undulating outdoor pools.
960 1280

Leonardo Worldwide Corporation  

Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach (Cancun, Mexico)

Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach (Cancun, Mexico)

Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach is located on a private beach but is still close to Cancun’s lively dining and nightlife. 960 1280

Grand Fiesta Americana Hotels & Resorts  

Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach (Cancun, Mexico)

Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach (Cancun, Mexico)

This all-suite hotel features breathtaking ocean views.
960 1280

Grand Fiesta Americana Hotels & Resorts  

Melia Cabo Real (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Melia Cabo Real (Los Cabos, Mexico)

The Melia Cabo Real, an all-inclusive beach and golf resort, is nestled on a sandy cove along Los Cabos' stunning sapphire coast. 960 1280

Melia Hotels International  

Melia Cabo Real (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Melia Cabo Real (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Enjoy a meal or a cocktail right on the beach under one of the largest thatched-roof structures in Los Cabos. 960 1280

Melia Hotels International  

The Westin Resort & Spa (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)

The Westin Resort & Spa (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)

The Westin Resort & Spa is a tropical paradise with a prime beachfront location in Puerto Vallarta.
960 1280

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.  

The Westin Resort & Spa (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)

The Westin Resort & Spa (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)

Take a refreshing dip in one of the pools that flow through the property. Visit the swim-up bar or relax in a private shaded area. 
960 1280

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.  

The Westin Resort & Spa (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)

The Westin Resort & Spa (Puerto Vallarta, Mexico)

There’s something for everyone at the Westin, whether it’s enjoying perfect-weather golfing, relaxing at the spa or just taking in the ocean views.
960 1280

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.  

Hyatt Zilara (Cancun, Mexico)

Hyatt Zilara (Cancun, Mexico)

Located on the area’s widest stretch of beach, the all-suite Hyatt Zilara is an adults-only haven. The all-inclusive resort boasts Cancun’s only ocean-view spa, as well as wine and spirit tastings, gourmet restaurants, and pool- and beachside butler service, making this the perfect place for a romantic getaway or a weekend escape with your friends. 960 1280

Hyatt Corporation  

Hyatt Zilara (Cancun, Mexico)

Hyatt Zilara (Cancun, Mexico)

Spend the afternoons at the oceanfront infinity pool at Zilara resort in Cancun, complete with swim-up bar, or hit the town for endless entertainment options and renowned nightlife. 960 1280

Hyatt Corporation  

Las Ventanas al Paraíso Resort (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Las Ventanas al Paraíso Resort (Los Cabos, Mexico)

With a never-ending view of the Sea of Cortez from the shorefront pool at Las Ventanas Resort in Cabo San Lucas, "infinity" seems like an understatement. 960 1280

Rosewood Hotels & Resorts  

Las Ventanas al Paraíso Resort (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Las Ventanas al Paraíso Resort (Los Cabos, Mexico)

The edges of the pool melt into the sea at Las Ventanas resort in Cabo San Lucas, meaning you can bask, rinse, and repeat in more than one body of water at a time. What flow will you go with? 960 1280

Rosewood Hotels & Resorts  

The Resort at Pedregal (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)

The Resort at Pedregal (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico)

Carved into a cliff on the southern tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula lies the remarkable Resort at Pedregal. Guests can stay in beachside villas and are pampered with luxe amenities such as private plunge pools and rain showers. 960 1280

The Resort at Pedregal  

Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Latin American sculptures and paintings greet you upon arrival at the posh Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa. Artistic inspiration may strike you as well while you admire the surrounding nature, where desert mountains meet the Sea of Cortez. 960 1280

The Leading Hotels Of The World  

Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa (Los Cabos, Mexico)

In the rear of the Marquis Los Cabos, 3 infinity pools offer sweeping views of the water, which is frequented by dolphins and water-sport aficionados alike. 960 1280

The Leading Hotels Of The World  

Mahekal Beach Resort (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)

Mahekal Beach Resort (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)

Tucked amid the tropical Riviera Maya jungle and Playa del Carmen’s longest stretch of beach, Mahekal Beach Resort offers a chic, bohemian take on beach life. 960 1280

Mahekal Beach Resort  

Mahekal Beach Resort (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)

Mahekal Beach Resort (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)

Among the thatched-roof cottages are accommodations at Mahekal Beach Resort offering lush garden views or beautiful ocean views, spacious terraces with hammocks and plunge pools. 960 1280

Mahekal Beach Resort  

Amansala (Tulum, Mexico)

Amansala (Tulum, Mexico)

ncorporating East Asian design with tropical accents, Amansala is an eco-chic resort located on the Caribbean side of Mexico in Tulum. Famed for the area’s white beaches and Mayan ruins, the resort celebrates the land’s natural beauty with its simple yet elegant oceanfront, thatched-roof cabanas. 960 1280

Amansala Resort & Retreat  

Amansala (Tulum, Mexico)

Amansala (Tulum, Mexico)

Unplug in rustic luxury and de-stress by embarking on one of the seasonal yoga retreats at Hotel Amansala, going on a beach jog with your friends, or reconnecting with your partner on a romantic beach getaway. 960 1280

Amansala Resort & Retreat  

Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort (Los Cabos, Mexico)

Neatly placed on a stretch of beach in Cabo San Lucas, the Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Golf & Spa Resort is the perfect place for a beach getaway. 960 1280

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.  

point arena lighthouse

point arena lighthouse

Marianela gets the 411 on the historic Point Arena Lighthouse from expert William Brown. 960 1280

  

Mendocino County

Mendocino County

Point Arena Lighthouse is located in Mendocino County, CA, 2 miles north of Point Arena. 960 1280

  

fresnel lens

fresnel lens

Marianela checks out the first-order Fresnel lens, worth over 3.5 million and made from over 600 hand-ground glass prisms. 960 1280

  

lighthouse musuem

lighthouse musuem

Some items in the museum have been kept since the lighthouse’s reconstruction in the 1906. 960 1280

  

original lighthouse

original lighthouse

The original lighthouse, constructed in 1870, was destroyed when a devastating earthquake struck the Light Station. 960 1280

  

lighthouse top

lighthouse top

Marianela can’t wait to reach the top of the lighthouse. 960 1280

  

musuem gift shop

musuem gift shop

These unique handmade mirrors are available for sale in the museum gift shop. 960 1280

  

100 stairs

100 stairs

Only 100 more stairs to the top! 960 1280

  

postcard

postcard

Point Area Light looks like it appeared straight out of a postcard. 960 1280

  

california coast

california coast

Marianela and William check out the spectacular view of the California coast. 960 1280

  

symbol of hope

symbol of hope

Many view the majestic lighthouse as a symbol of hope. 960 1280

  

lighthouse keepers

lighthouse keepers

“These (lighthouse) Keepers must’ve really been in shape,” says Marianela. 960 1280

  

tallest lighthouse

tallest lighthouse

The Point Arena Lighthouse is one of the tallest lighthouses on the West Coast. 960 1280

  

rocky coast

rocky coast

The lighthouse was built to help ships navigate their way through the rocky coast. 960 1280

  

The Hot List

Explore America’s most stunning scenery.
Join the conversation on Social Media!
Stay updated on the latest travel tips and trends.
Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss Travel Channel in your favorite social media feeds.