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The world’s best beaches – and the three Australian spots that made the cut

Turquoise Bay was one of three Australian beaches to make the list.

Turquoise Bay was one of three Australian beaches to make the list. Photo: Getty

A little-known and secluded beach on Australia’s western coast has been named among the world’s best.

Turquoise Bay, located in Western Australia’s Cape Range National Park about 1300 kilometres north of Perth, has been selected as the sixth-best beach in the world on the World’s 50 Best Beaches countdown.

Every year, the best of the best are ranked for those looking for the ultimate coastal experience.

The World’s 50 Best Beaches is based on the votes of beach ambassadors as well as more than 1000 of the world’s “most experienced and respected travel influencers and journalists”.

“The list offers travellers around the globe with unparalleled insights from the best in the industry,” a press release stated.

This year, three Australian beaches made the cut – two from WA and one from Queensland.

The top 10

  1. Trunk Bay, US Virgin Islands
  2. Cala Mariolu, Italy
  3. Meads Bay, Anguilla
  4. Entalula Beach, Philippines
  5. Voutoumi Beach, Greece
  6. Turquoise Bay, Australia
  7. Pink Beach, Indonesia
  8. Anse Georgette, Seychelles
  9. Green Lagoon, French Polynesia
  10. Horse Shoe Island, Myanmar

Australia’s best beaches

Turquoise Bay is described as “secluded and untouched perfection”, and where the desert meets the waters of the Ningaloo Reef.

It’s roughly a 40-minute coastal drive to Exmouth, which is a well-loved snorkelling spot.

The waters of the bay are part of the incredible Ningaloo Reef, providing up-close encounters with a diverse array of marine life in crystal-clear conditions,” the list says.

“Its currents gently carry snorkelers along the reef in a relaxing drift, commonly known as the ‘Drift Snorkel’. Turquoise Bay offers an immersive nature experience that is rare to find elsewhere.”

In 20th place is Anchor Bay Beach, located on Queensland’s Lizard Island, which sits on the Great Barrier Reef.

pictured is Anchor Bay

Queensland’s Anchor Bay was 20th on the list. Photo: The World’s 50 Best Beaches

Visitors can explore the coral reefs by diving and snorkelling and the island is only accessible by a small plane or boat.

“Lizard Island, smack in the middle of the Great Barrier Reef. All the beaches here are stunning, but Anchor Bay Beach is one of our favourites,” travel bloggers Lily Mercieca and Hayden Greener, known as @thegreenertwo online, remarked.

“It’s got pristine white sand, coconut palms, and the water’s crystal clear.”

The last Australian entry on the list is Wharton Beach, in 33rd place.

Yet another remote beach, this one being on Western Australia’s south coast, Wharton Beach promises a tranquil setting, thanks to its “crystal-clear turquoise waters and pristine white sands”.

The best beach in the world

The best beach in the world for 2024 was Trunk Bay in the US Virgin Islands.

Deemed a “quintessential Caribbean paradise”, people can enjoy crystal-clear waters and a lack of commercial activity thanks to its protected status.

Trunk Bay beach in Saint John in the Virgin Islands in the Caribbean - one of the world's most beautiful beaches

Trunk Bay St John in the US Virgin Islands in the Caribbean was voted the best beach in the world. Photo: Getty

Italy’s Cala Mariolu was ranked second on the list and was followed by another Caribbean location, Meads Bay in Anguilla.

In total, the US had three beaches on the list, as did Australia.

Other hotspots include Italy, Anguilla, Seychelles, Philippines, Mexico, Greece and Indonesia.

Additionally, England, Japan, Venezuela, Panama, St Barth, Aruba, Curacao and Myanmar all had a spot on the annual list for the first time.

Pictured is Italy's Cala Mariolu

Italy’s Cala Mariolu was voted the second best beach in the world. Photo: Getty

The World’s 50 Best Beaches

  1. Trunk Bay, US Virgin Islands
  2. Cala Mariolu, Italy
  3. Meads Bay, Anguilla
  4. Entalula Beach, Philippines
  5. Voutoumi Beach, Greece
  6. Turquoise Bay, Australia
  7. Pink Beach, Indonesia
  8. Anse Georgette, Seychelles
  9. Green Lagoo, French Polynesia
  10. Horse Shoe Island, Myanmar
  11. Calo Des Moro, Spain
  12. Le Morne Beach, Mauritius
  13. Aharen Beach, Japan
  14. Lanikai Beach, Hawaii
  15. One Foot Island, Cook Islands
  16. Playa Balandra, Mexico
  17. Grace Bay, Turks & Caicos
  18. Puinn Sand Beach, Norway
  19. Cala Goloritze, Italy
  20. Anchor Bay Beach, Australia
  21. Gardner Bay, Ecuador
  22. Anse Source D’Argent, Seychelles
  23. Freedom Beach, Thailand
  24. Cayo De Agua, Venezuela
  25. Praia Da Marinha, Portugal
  26. Seven Mile Beach, Cayman Islands
  27. Grote Knip, Curaçao
  28. Horseshoe Bay, Bermuda
  29. Fteri Beach, Greece
  30. Maundays Bay, Anguilla
  31. Cayo Zapatilla, Panama
  32. Boulders Beach, South Africa
  33. Wharton Beach, Australia
  34. Grand Anse, Grenada
  35. Baia Do Sancho, Brazil
  36. Kelebekler Vadisi Beach, Turkey
  37. Colombier Beach, St Barth
  38. Playa Xpu Ha, Mexico
  39. Kelingking Beach, Indonesia
  40. Kapalua Bay Beach, Hawaii
  41. Diamond Beach, Iceland
  42. Pipe Creek Sandbar, Bahamas
  43. Cayo Levantado, Dominican Republic
  44. Henderson Beach, Florida
  45. Bon Bon Beach, Philippines
  46. Cathedral Cove Beach, New Zealand
  47. Varadero Beach, Cuba
  48. Kynance Cove, UK
  49. Eagle Beach, Aruba
  50. Rabbit Beach, Italy.
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