When dreaming up a tropical getaway in India, the first place that likely comes to mind is Goa -- a former Portuguese colony about an hour's flight south of Mumbai. But the popular seaside retreat isn't the only sandy shoreline in India that's worth a visit when you travel here.
Each sunny strip offers a different experience, from family-friendly water sports to riotous full moon-style parties, private coves and some of Asia's best diving.
We've combed the coastline to uncover 5 of the best beaches in India:
1. Radhanagar, Andaman and Nicobar Islands - Located on Havelock Island -- in the remote Andaman and Nicobar Islands between India and Thailand -- Radhanagar (known locally as Beach No. 7) is often listed as one of Asia's best beaches.
Travellers combing the isolated coastline will quickly see the appeal -- picture calm waters and fine sand, fringed by a lush canopy. Despite the far-flung location, there's actually much to do. Travellers can fill their days with water sports, sunbathing, surfing, fishing, sailing, kayaking and rainforest treks -- to name a few.
Scuba diving is one of the best ways to explore the underwater worlds and colourful coral reefs, with classes for both beginners and experienced divers available.
2. Mandarmani, West Bengal - This pristine beach is about four hours south of Kolkata and a huge contrast from that enormous chaotic city. There was once a tiny fishing village, but development has seen it growing.
The 13 kilometres of beautiful sand is the main reason for its popularity. You are likely to see a huge number of tiny red crabs scrambling over the sand; they are harmless and will do their best to avoid you. The water is calm and therefore good for swimming.
Sunrise and sunset are great times of the day to be on these lovely sands.
3. Varkala Beach, Kerala - Varkala, a calm and quiet hamlet, lies on the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram district. It has several tourist attractions that include a beautiful beach, a 2000-year-old Vishnu Temple and the Ashramam - Sivagiri Mutt a little distance from the beach.
The Papanasam Beach (also called as Varkala Beach), which is ten kilometres away from Varkala, is renowned for a natural spring. The spring is considered to have medicinal and curative properties. A dip in the holy waters at this beach is believed to purge the body of impurities and the soul of all sins; hence the name 'Papanasam Beach'.
4. Kaup, Karnataka - Kaup is on the Netravati River in Southern Karnataka.
The colors that confront you are beautiful – the gold of the sand, blue of the water and green of the casuarina trees.
Sunset is a great time here and there are few better places from which to enjoy it than at the top of the old lighthouse. St. Mary’s Islands are just offshore and worth a visit.
They comprise a four-island archipelago dating back millions of years, with the lava rock columns very impressive.
Vasco da Gama was thought to have visited in the late 15th Century.
5. Minicoy, Lakshadweep - Despite its misnomer, Lakshadweep (meaning "100,000 islands", but only home to 36) promises spectacular tropical scenery and secluded sands.
Most beaches around the archipelago offer private coves and an assortment of water activities, but Minicoy -- in the southernmost atoll -- scores bonus points with those who are seeking absolute isolation.
Most travellers spend their mornings snorkelling or diving amidst the brilliant coral reefs.
It's easy to explore the tiny 1.8-square-mile island (with roughly 10,000 people). You can plan a visit to a local village or climb the namesake white lighthouse, which was built by the British in 1885.
The best part about the list of beaches mentioned above is that they are all accessible by air, land or sea. At Viaje Tours and Travels, we will make sure we fulfil your dream beach destination in the most easiest and hassle-free way, so that you can only focus on the pictures and memories!