The holiday brochures and websites all show empty expanses of enticing golden sand and gently leaning palm trees. Yet we all fear that some of the charm will be gone. Or the reality will be different from the publicity. Regimented rows of towels and beach umbrellas stretching into the distance are not many people's beach ideal. It doesn't matter how beautiful the bay. Or how turquoise the water, if you can only find a matchbox-sized space to plonk down your towel and sun block.
The happy reality is that this is rarely the case for many of the beach destinations that we recommend. This is the beauty of the beaches of Africa's coasts and islands. It is almost surprising how empty even most of South Africa's beaches can be. (Outside of the peak Christmas season of course!)
But we can do even better than that. There are some beach retreats which are so far from the madding crowds - and so expansive in size - that you'd be surprised to share the beach with anyone else. Apart from a tiny 'pin figure' in the distance.
Mozambique beach retreats
The same goes for the Inner Islands of the Seychelles...
Malawi or Madagascar?
Another location which also has this utter sense of seclusion in spades is Lake Malawi. Indeed some of the Lake Malawi lodges are built on islands in this vast inland sea.
Finally why not consider the northern islands of Madagascar? Here you can have gorgeous unspoilt beaches and combine it with some of the most unique wildlife experiences in the world...
South Africa Beach Retreats
Surprisingly, this glorious isolation can even be found in the more populous South Africa. Here, some of the best beaches are backed by vegetation that's unsuitable for agriculture. So that means no settlements or villages. Yes, accessibility is more of an issue. But, personally, I'd prefer to drive an extra hour or two if that means I have a vast expanse of empty beach to enjoy for several days...
So check out our sample holidays and recommended beach retreats, below. Most of them are small lodges. So that a even short walk along the beach will get you away from other guests.
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- Remote beach destinations to choose from - Quirimbas islands, Benguerra, Lake Malawi, Mozambique, even much of South Africa's coastline
- Outside of the Christmas peak, many beaches are uncrowded, especially if you are happy to walk a short distance.
- Vegetated dunes along much of South Africa's coastline has kept it beautiful and unspoilt.
1st class"We have had Sonja with Cedarberg plan our trips for years and they have all been excellent. The properties she has chosen for us have all been 1st class and exactly what we wanted. Many were a giant puzzle of flights, drivers and lodging reservations and they all fit together perfectly. " Mrs Marianna Willis
Tailor make it all to suit"Peter got it from the start of my gabbled explanation of reason for trip and abnormal itinerary. He pieced it all together and I always felt confident, even before the trip. " Mr & Mrs Leake, UK
As always an excellent itinerary"Choices of lodges was perfect. Everything went extraordinarily smoothly. As always an excellent itinerary, great local agent/guide/driver and good trip notes. Good to hear from Milandi personally when a local problem caused a change in the itinerary during the trip. " Mr Tim Flesher, UK
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