Top 10 Most Beautiful Coastal Towns Around the World
Some of the most picturesque communities on Earth sit along the water, whether it be warm, sandy beaches in tropical regions or icy, cliff-lined shores in the Arctic. Anywhere you look, from North American fishing towns to European cliffside settlements, the scenery is breathtaking.
When you hear the name “Salvador,” don’t think of the Central American country; think of the Brazilian city. El Salvador is home to some of the world’s most renowned Renaissance architecture, as well as numerous remaining colonial structures like Brazil’s first cathedral and oldest medical school. Almost all of the city’s 16th-century structures are places of worship. In the 17th and 18th centuries, many of them were adorned with carvings. The colonial era is reflected in the many brightly painted walls.
There are over 160 churches in the area, studies show. That’s why it has more churches than any other city in Latin America. The Gothic churches there are colorful and unusual. The church there is undulating and lively, lavish and rich in Baroque style. The Vassilia Church is the largest, the church of Matris, the Convent of Conceiço, the oldest, and the church of St. Francis de Assis, the most magnificent.
The Brazilian celebration known as the Carnival of Salvador is a major event. The original music and dance performed at the massive street carnival parade help make it famous. During the Carnival, it is full of music and dance, which is the most authentic embodiment of Brazilian tradition and carnival spirit.
The town of Positano is picture-perfect because of its location on the dramatic cliffs of the Amalfi Coast. The winding, cobblestone streets that lead to the cool Mediterranean Sea are adorned with beautiful architecture and flowering lemon, orange, and olive trees. Like the rest of Italy, they have a plethora of trendy cafes, shops, and hotels.
Bermuda’s St. George’s Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a great place to unwind in paradise away from the crowds. It was the third successful English settlement after St. John’s, Newfoundland, and Jamestown, Virginia. St. George’s is a must-see destination due to its pristine waters and charming architecture characterized by white limestone roofs and exteriors painted in bright pastels.
The beach town of Cabo Polonio sits on Uruguay’s easternmost tip. The fact that there are no roads leading to this hidden gem of a vacation spot is the first thing that guests will notice. You can either take a small vehicle (like a 4×4 off road vehicle) or walk for four miles through the dunes to get there. What could possibly be more unconventional than that?
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Collioure, at the very end of France (and about six miles from the Spanish border), is not your typical Mediterranean port city. Tourists will not see any multimillion-dollar yachts or run into any famous people. Instead, they’ll see ordinary people from all walks of life out enjoying the city’s stunning streets and coastline. Henri Matisse used to come here because the perfect natural light sparked his creativity.
In a picture-perfect setting between the Baltic Sea and the bodden (wetlands), you’ll find the tiny village of Ahrenshoop. There are traditional fishing shacks in the harbor, and further afield, thatched fishermen’s cottages are set back from the sand dunes. The village is located in a beautiful area, but it also has many cultural attractions. Its light and landscapes have, over the years, attracted many artists, and the city now boasts both a school of painting and an art museum.
The Cinque Terre is a coastal area within Liguria, in the northwest of Italy. It consists of the five towns of Monterosso al Mare, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola, and Riomaggiore, and is located to the west of La Spezia. In 1999, UNESCO added the Five Villages to its list of World Heritage Sites, which also included Portovenere, Palmaria, Tino, and Tinetto.
There are five small fishing villages in the area, and many visitors choose to hike between them to get a feel for the scenic Italian countryside. You can take the train or opt for a shorter hiking route if you’re sick of traveling. Or, you could book a room at a family-friendly hotel, stay put, and bask in the charm of the local fishing community.
There are also many chapels and churches in the fishing village, the most famous of which is the “Goddess of Life” chapel. This chapel is so active that it almost feels like people worship here every week. During non-rush hours, locals go about their daily routines. At night, the young and old alike could be heard laughing and chatting in the bar and the courtyard of the house, respectively. You can feel how slow and happy life can be in the Cinque Terre.
Cadaqués, on Spain’s Costa Brava, is where Salvador Dal spent many of his summers. It’s a tranquil village with pretty pebble beaches and bright white houses against a cobalt blue sea. The town’s thriving cultural scene embodies the bohemian spirit associated with Salvador Dal and his contemporaries, such as Federico Garca Lorca. Fairs, parades, and festivals, such as the International Music Festival and the Cultural Week of Cadaqués, are common occurrences throughout the year.
About 20 kilometers from Tunis’s capital is the town of Sidi Bou Said in the country’s north. The predominant color scheme is blue and white. A steep cliff overlooks the Mediterranean from which the entire town can be seen. The view from Sidi Bou Said is absolutely phenomenal, and will continue to amaze you throughout your entire trip.
Sidi Bou Said, the bohemian seaside suburb of Tunis, is incredibly photogenic, with its high and low, randomly dispersed, blue and white Andalusian huts. The winding road goes on for miles in contrastingly bright and shadowy sunlight. It used to be a paradise for Spaniards to escape religious persecution. A lot of the style came from the French way of building. As if transported from another dimension or another time, it also swept through the city. Tourists love to relax with a cappuccino in hand and watch the world go by, making this a popular activity. You can also take in the laid-back vibe by wandering the car-free side streets.
The Beach (2000), starring Leonardo DiCaprio, introduced many Americans to the stunning beauty of Koh Phi Phi in Thailand. From Phuket, most visitors take a ferry for 90 minutes to reach this island paradise, where you won’t find a single car. This tiny island has beautiful beaches with white sand and turquoise water.
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