Being lulled into a state of deep relaxation by the sound of waves lapping at a beach is our idea of the ultimate escapism. But sadly, staying in prime beachside locations often means a hefty room rate… unless you know where to look! Here are 5 of the best-value places for a beach break.
Skiathos might be a tiny island but it definitely packs a punch. It has fantastic food, a lush green interior and 65 of the Aegean’s best beaches – long, golden curves lapped by dazzlingly clear turquoise water. The classic combo of sun, sea and sand makes it a magnet for tourists and package deals… Which makes us all the more smug to have found a place that’s stylish, great value for money and relatively undiscovered. Skiathos Holidays, on the upmarket Kalamaki Peninsula, is a charming family-run mini-complex of whitewashed suites and villas just steps from the soft sand of Vromolimnos beach.
Prices start from £62 per night based on 2 people sharing
Catalonia is well-known as Spain’s top foodie region, but beach-wise is most famous for the hustle and bustle of the Costa Brava. Escape the crowds on this beautiful rugged coastline at quiet, unspoilt Aiguafreda with its crystal-clear water and coastal paths to superb nearby beaches. 40m from the cove, up a pine-covered hillside is Hostal Sa Rascassa. Perhaps the only thing to top its killer location is its stunning restaurant, which can be found hidden amongst the trees twinkling with fairy lights. The menu is fabulous and wines similarly glorious. In the peak of summer the restaurant also runs a beach bar. Sundowners anyone?!
Prices start from £97 per night based on 2 people sharing
It’s impossible to think of Koh Phangan without picturing full-moon parties and buckets of rum. If you’re coming to Thailand to party then good for you! But equally if you want to balance it out with health treatments, detoxes and massages then The Sanctuary ticks all your boxes. This laid-back resort on one of the Koh Phangan’s remote beaches is surrounded by sandy coves with turquoise sea and dense green rainforest just waiting to be explored on foot or by kayak.
Prices start at £64 per night based on 2 people sharing
Brazil’s state of Bahia boasts some of the best beaches in the whole of South America and there’s a direct correlation between how unspoilt they are and how easy they are to get to. Boipeba island is a short flight and boat trip from Salvador airport but trust us, you’ll be rewarded for the adventure when you arrive. Boipeba is one of Brazil’s best-kept secrets – you’ll find miles of unspoiled beaches and friendly locals. Our favourite hideaway on the island is Santa Clara, a rustic guesthouse set in a lush tropical garden, a short stroll from a fabulous beach. The owners, brothers Charles and Mark, extend a really warm welcome and their great restaurant is easily the best on the island.
Prices start at £70 per night based on 2 people sharing
To find a truly unspoilt part of northern Goa, head to the stretch of coast near Mandrem. Here, at the edge of tranquil fishing village of Ashvem, behind the nearly deserted white-sand Ashvem Beach, you’ll find a collection of charming thatched igloos. Shaded by coconut palms during the day and twinkling with fairy lights and paper lanterns by night, Yab Yum is straight out of a fairytale. We loved the delicious organic breakfast served outside our igloo and obviously we’re still dreaming about that wide-open, nearly-empty, silky-sanded beach.
Prices start at £100 per night based on 2 people sharing