Although the birthplace of the Arab Spring, Tunisia is quickly getting back on its feet and doing what it does best – show off some of the world’s most beautiful beaches tailored specifically for independent travellers. Tunisian beaches are among the very best beaches in the Mediterranean, no doubt. The Tunisian coastline makes up 810 km of snowy white sand and pristine waters and it’s no surprise millions of tourists flock the place all year round. Plan your trip and bring all your beach essentials like blankets, sunscreen, beach umbrellas from BeachMall and experience what everyone else already has.
Menzel Tmim & El Hawaria
Ask any local and they will tell you this is the place to go for the cleanest most azure waters. While the majority of tourists flock to Sousse and Hammamet, the locals will go to Manzil Tmim and El Hawaria for some peace, quiet and crystalline waters. Perhaps the only issue with these places is accommodation – there is no amazing quality accommodation. Manzil Tmim is itself a small town well off the beaten tourist track located on Cape Bon, a peninsula in far northeastern Tunisia. There’s not much to do, but if you want to get away from the tourists and swim in beautiful warm water – this is the very place to go.
The Island of Djerba
South from Cape Bon is North Africa’s largest island Djerba. It’s has a small population of 65,000 but thousands of French, German and Italian tourists come here every year to enjoy the beautiful beaches and dramatic sunsets. The north eastern point of the island is where you will find the beach hotels but there are plenty of opportunities to do other-less hotel orientated activities like camel trekking and 4-wheel driving. Don’t miss out on the sightseeing and make sure you enjoy the nightlife.
Not far from the border of Algeria is Tabarka, Tunisia’s best place for diving. Even though it’s not at all like the quiet Manzil Tmim beach, it does offer visitors loads of fun stuff to do like coral fishing and great opportunities for underwater photography. There’s an annual Salsa Festival that takes place in August each year which is always a hoot. There are also heaps of Roman ruins and what the Tunisians call the Needles of Tabarka – pointy rocks in foaming water. Beautiful stuff. Enjoy beautiful food and wine while you snorkel throughout your day.
Algeria is to say the least mystical – it’s got the magic of the Sahara, the long lines of beautiful turquoise beaches and some of the finest weather known to mankind. Eighty per cent of Algeria is made up of sand – you could probably say it’s basically one huge beach. While the beaches of Algiers and Oran offer the most comfortable stays in terms of infrastructure, travel further west and you are guaranteed to see unadulterated beaches where olive and oak trees grow in the wild and where humans (bar surfers) hardly exist.
Annaba – Seraidi Beach
This beach is perfect for surfing. It has the most exposed break on the coast and has consistent surf throughout most of the year with both right and left handers. There’s never a crowd here so grab your fibro and shave some waves you surf gypsy.
El Kala and Jijel
Jijela is where locals will tell you to get away from the tourists but it’s also where you won’t see a woman in a bikini or a man wearing shorts above his knee. Surrounded by forests and caves, it’s one of Algeria’s most beautiful beaches. It also used to once be called a dangerous place but now beach lovers are slowly starting to come back to this magical place, all dressed up…
Ok so it is close to Oran (an hour or so) and the beach can get pretty packed but it’s worth mentioning because of it’s ricked beauty. It’s basically a clean cove of shallow flat warm water surrounded by rocks and small reefs. Great for snorkelling and catching oysters!
Sidi Fredj Peninsula
Many say a visit to Algeria would not be complete without going to Sidi. It’s got some of the most beautiful beaches in the Med and is in easy reach of Algiers. It’s basically a water sport haven – you can go water skiing, cruising, sailing, fishing, kite surfing and even enjoy land based activities like open-air theatres and some of the best and most luxurious resorts in Africa. Think booze.
Morocco is lucky to benefit from both the Med and the Atlantic. It’s got pounding surf on the one side and a quiet lovely still water bit on the other. The country’s massive, full of good people, tea, shisha, amazing food and you can do everything from trekking up in the mountains to swimming and surfing down the coast. The most visited beaches are obviously those close to the cities but there are so many other unspoilt beaches in the middle of nowhere.
Dakhla Bay, Atlantic Ocean
Moroccans swear by Dakhla Bay, it’s where the sea meets the desert and where the water stays a sweet 25 degrees all year round. There are ideal surfing conditions with long right-breaking waves coming in consistently at Foum Labouir. Fishing, diving and animal spotting are a must. You can camp in the dunes or even stay in one of the surf camps if you want more comfortable accommodation. Visit Dakhla in March for the Dakhla Festival; learn about Saharan tribes, nomadic music and celebrate the desert and sea at once.
Legzira, (Sidi Ifni), Atlantic Ocean
If you’re visiting Morocco you HAVE to go to Legzira. It’s a natural arch south of Agadir surrounded by cliffs which can only be visited at low tide. Pack your lunches because there won’t be a single shop in sight. It’s hard to find peace and tranquillity quite like you would here. It’s only 10 km from Sidni on a rough steep road but if you’ve really itchy feet you could even give it a go by walking down the coastal road. The most stunning things about Legzira are the sandstone formations but the sand goes on for miles and the water is crystal clear. Enjoy this piece of paradise.
Oualidia (pronounced wa-li-dee-ah)
Is basically your number one top beach destination in Morocco. This is where all the Spanish pink flamingos come when they travel to the sub-sahara come spring time and autumn. Birdwatchers paradise galore matey! You get to see sandpipers, herons, curlews and all sorts of birds. There is also a superb lagoon at the town centre – what more could you ask for. The town is a bit modern but there are a few old Kasbahs around. There’s also plenty of opportunity to kite and wind surf. Canoeing and kayaking are big in the area and you can even spot whales between August and October. Woo hoo!
Here’s a vid of Bertie Higgins’ Casablanca to get you in the mood