Although there may be nothing more relaxing than spending your vacation at a secluded beach resort, staying at a beach town often gives you a more authentic taste of the culture and traditions of the country that you are visiting. From an artistic Tunisian seaside suburb to an Indian beach town that is also a temple town, OROGOLD brings you some of the top beach towns around the world.
Sidi Bou Said, Tunisia
Located just north of Tunis, Sidi Bou Said is a picturesque bohemian seaside town, lined with whitewashed walls accentuated by blue arched doorways and intricate metal balconies. The white sand beaches and sparkling Mediterranean waters are great for relaxing, but this Medieval Tunisian town offers so much more than that. The cobbled streets winding their way around the incredible architecture are a joy to explore, and you will discover plenty of unique cafes and shops along the way, making it no surprise that Sidi Bou Said has inspired many artists, and is a favorite destination for creative types who want to relax.
Although it is essentially a temple town, with its 2000-year-old Vishnu Temple, the beach town of Varkala has now become one of the most popular hangouts for travellers exploring the south of Kerala in India. The beach is renowned for its natural spring water, which is believed to have many healing properties, and a soak in these so-called ‘holy waters’ claims to cleanse the body and soul of any impurities. Slowly becoming more and more popular with tourists, Varkala has started to become slightly more developed, and OROGOLD recommends a visit to one of the many Ayurvedic massage centers that have since opened up in town.
Paternoster, South Africa
A traditional South African fishing town, Paternoster is one of the oldest towns on the West coast, just a one and a half hour drive from Cape Town, and attracts visitors with its endless white sandy beaches and strong maritime way of life. Since there is a strict architectural code that requires buildings to preserve the town’s heritage and character, most buildings are built as classical fisherman’s cottages, making it quite the unique beach town. From the beach itself, you can watch whales and dolphins playing in the water, while 250 different species of sea birds have made this coastline their breeding ground. Other popular activities in Paternoster include spear fishing excursions, diving, hiking, and both boat and land based cray-fishing. The area is famous for its abundance of crayfish, so, in addition to catching your own, you will also find many local crayfish dishes served up in restaurants throughout the town. OROGOLD recommends trying potjiekos, a deliciously flavourful traditional stew.
Whether you’re after a temple beach town with healing waters, or a traditional South African fishing town, these are some of OROGOLD’s favorite beach towns around the world. Since they are all relatively small, accommodation options may be limited, so OROGOLD recommends you plan your trip well in advance.