Follow US:

Practice English Speaking&Listening with: The WORLD's Most Bizarre BEACHES

(0)
Difficulty: 0

Theres nothing quite like a day at the beach filled with fun in the sun, sand and

surf, but not all beaches are created equal.

Some places have sparkling blue or green waters, while others have sand-filled, cloudy waves.

Some shorelines are dangerous, filled with rocks and riptides, while others are shallow

and lined with soft sand.

For better or worse, these 10 beaches are some of the most notable in the world.

While most earned a place on the list due to their incredible beauty or unique offerings,

a few belong here not because of how they look, but because they are notable for other

reasons.

10.

Papakolea: The Green Sand Beach in Hawaii

One of only four green sand beaches, the famous Papakolea beach is made up of a hollowed out

volcanic cone that erupted over 50,000 year ago.

The cone contained rich veins of a natural mineral called olivine, which when cut into

gem form is a semi-precious stone called peridot.

The eroded pieces of the olivine turn into sand too find to be sold as gemstones, but

still vivid enough in color to shade the whole beach green.

Excited to visit?

Well, thats the one problem with this beachgetting there is a nightmare.

To start with, you have to drive on a long, out of the way road and then you have to park

3 miles away from the beach and hike the remaining distance through rugged pastures that offer

no signs to guide you towards your final destination.

Once you get to the volcanic cone cliffs, you have to climb down the steep hills to

actually access the beach itself and on the shore, only strong swimmers are advised to

enter the sparkling blue water at all due to a strong undercurrent that sweeps people

away with little warning.

It should go without saying with a beach this far off the beaten path, but lifeguards are

not posted here so should you encounter danger, youll be left on your own to handle it.

9.

Kaihalulu: Hawaiis Red Sand Beach

Hawaii seems to have beaches in just about all colors: white, gold, black, green, and

even red.

Like all beaches, the sand color at Hawaiis Kaihalulu Beach is directly related to the

rock and mineral content around the beach.

In this case, like Papakolea, the rocks around the shore are actually remnants of a once-active

volcano that has since been eroded into little more than a rocky cove.

This volcanic cone happened to have a particularly high iron content, which appears a rusty red

color when mixed with salt air and sea mist.

The underwater wall of the volcanic cone creates a partial sea wall that ensures the water

at the beach is fairly calm, making it a great place to snorkel.

Even so, visitors are advised to exercise caution near the cove opening, where strong

currents have been known to pull swimmers into the open ocean.

While the unique look of the beach is absolutely worth visiting, its worth noting that the

sand itself is very coarse, so it is advisable to wear shoes even in the water in order to

protect your feet.

Also worth noting: the cove is one of only a handful of clothing optional beaches in

Maui.

8.

The Most Polluted Beach on Earth

When you hear about an uninhabited, remote island, you probably imagine a pristine paradise.

But unfortunately, with all the plastic pollution in todays oceans, when no one visits an

island, it means no one is there to clean up the trash.

And thats exactly how Henderson Island, a 14 square mile island in the South Pacific

sitting nearly 3,000 miles away from the nearest population center, is both one of the worlds

only raised coral atolls unaffected by human contact and the most polluted island in the

world.

In fact, the small island is home to over 38,000 pounds of plastic and a whopping 3,570

pieces of trash wash up on the shore every day.

Of course, the problem isnt just the lack of cleanup crews, but also the islands

unfortunate location right in the path of one of the biggest currents in the Pacific,

the South Pacific Gyre.

In other words, the perfect place to snag all the trash floating through the Pacific.

7.

The Glass Beach of California

While Henderson Island shows how much damage trash can do to nature, Glass Beach near Fort

Bragg shows that every now and again, nature finds incredible ways to repair itself.

It all started after the famous San Francisco earthquake of 1906.

Residents of nearby Fort Bragg found that almost all of their buildings were reduced

to rubble.

Before they tried to rebuild their city, they had to get rid of all the refuse from the

earthquake.

When burning the trash did no good, they decided to dump it into the ocean, thinking the currents

would take the trash to sea forever.

Only the debris didnt go anywhere, and residents were now left with a seaside dump.

Since the dump was already there, locals just took to tossing all their trash at the beach

up until the mid-1960s, when the practice was illegalized.

Eventually, the currents did wash away much of the refuse and the government took away

many of the larger items.

Meanwhile, glass left at the beach was tumbled and smoothed away into small pieces of sea

glass, which now are mixed in with tiny pebbles, creating thesandfor this beautiful

beach.

If you do visit, please note that as Glass Beach is part of the MacKerricher State Park,

taking pieces of sea glass is illegal.

Also, the water can be a bit rough, especially for young and inexperienced swimmers, so its

probably best to stay on shore here.

6.

Hot Water Beach in New Zealand

Unlike most beaches, the ocean itself isnt a big attraction at New Zealands Hot Water

Beach.

Instead visitors come far and wide to enjoy the warm underground river that happens to

flow right into the Pacific.

Two hours before and after low tide, beachgoers can hit the hot water as it bubbles through

the beach sand.

One of the most common activities here is to dig a nice pool in the sand, essentially

building a hot-spring spa.

By the next tide, the pools will all be washed away, leaving a pristine patch of sand ready

for the next batch of visitors eager to dig their own steamy, sandy bathtubs.

It is worth noting that Hot Water Beach is home to some very strong rip currents, so

as refreshing as it may be to soak in the warm hot springs and then plunge in the cool

ocean, its probably best to avoid that urge unless youre a really strong swimmer

or if theres a lifeguard on duty.

5.

The Swimming Pool Beach in Chile

Like the idea of the beach but dont want to swim in the actual ocean?

Then youll love the swimming pool at San Alfonso del Mar in Chile.

The biggest pool in the world, this monstrosity stretches across nearly 20 acres of beachfront

property, reaches depths of up to 115 feet and holds over 66 million gallons of constantly

circulating, heated, and filtered seawater.

Its so big the resort even allows people to sail and canoe in it.

Best of all, its location allows you to take a stroll along the beach just between the

natural ocean waves and the clean, filtered water of the pool.

And the pool itself even has its own sandy beaches leading into it, ensuring youll

always feel like youre at the beach even when youre within the confines of the worlds

largest swimming pool.

4.

Boulders: The South African Beach Ruled by Penguins

Youd be hard pressed to find another place on the entire globe where you can spend a

nice day at the beach split between refreshing dips in the ocean and delightful walks to

check out penguins in their native habitat.

Boulders Beach is famous for its playful, tuxedoed residents, who are partially responsible

for making this otherwise sleepy shoreline one of the most popular tourist attractions

in the area.

Fortunately for both humans and penguins, the swimming area for both species are kept

completely separate thanks to the natural rock formations that split the beach into

a number of coves.

The best viewing area for the birds is on a wooden boardwalk that keeps humans away

from the protected animal habitat known as Foxy Beach.

This means the penguins can feel safe in their home and that humans can swim and sunbathe

without fear of running into an angry penguin with a razor sharp beak or stepping in the

birds droppings.

3.

The Irish Beach That Disappeared and Reappeared 30 Years Later

When visiting a sandy beach, its easy to take for granted that it wont be around

forever.

Eventually the sea will wash away the sand and youll just be left with a rocky coast.

Even those who know that beach sands can be washed away and carried off to other coasts

probably still wouldnt expect a beach to disappearand then reappear only 33 years

later.

But thats exactly what happened to the small beach beside the tiny Irish town of

Dooagh on Achill Island.

In 1984, severe storms stripped the sand away from the shore, leaving little more than rock

pools along the coast.

But in May of this year, locals were happily surprised to see the beach covered in sand

again after a series of high spring tides.

The town once had a lively tourist industry based around the beach, so locals were pretty

happy to see it return.

2.

Maho in St. Martens

Most of the time, this world famous beach is just like any other beautiful Caribbean

coastline, but Mahos proximity to the airport is what made it famous.

Thats because the Princess Juliana International Airport is right next door to the beach and

it has a particularly short runway, so planes need to get as close as possible to the ground

before hitting the official airport propertymeaning the planes approach their final

descent just above the beach.

Plane watching is such a popular pastime at the beach that almost all of the local bars

and restaurants have airport timetables so tourists can run to the shore in time to feel

the rush of the engines push them towards the water.

Aside from the obvious thrill of standing right below a landing plane, visitors are

also rewarded with some strikingly awesome vacation photos.

Unfortunately for thrill seekers, though, the most exciting landings are now a thing

of the past as jumbo-jets no longer fly into this island airport.

1.

The Florida Beach With the Softest, Coolest Sand on Earth

Consistently ranked as one of the top beaches in the US, what really makes Siesta Key famous

isnt its crystal clear water but its powdery white sand.

While the sand from most beaches is made up of quartz, theres something special about

the quartz-based sand at this beach, most likely because it is both so pure (measuring

it at around 99% crushed quartz) and ground up so fine.

Scientists believe this particular quartz took millions of years to make its way from

the Appalachian Mountains through rivers into the Gulf of Mexico, and eventually onto this

Florida island.

The end result is almost pure white powder that doesnt heat up in hot weather, leaving

the beach comfortable to walk around on while barefoot under even the warmest summer sun.

The Description of The WORLD's Most Bizarre BEACHES