15 Beaches with the Best Seashells in the World
Feast your eyes on these stunning destinations that are brimming with whelks, cockles, Scotch bonnets, and conchs.
Praia dos Aveiros, Portugal
Nestled in the town of Albufeira, Algarve, near the southern tip of Portugal, lies the beach Praia dos Aveiros. Known for its fine golden sand and the cliffs and rock formations flanking it on either side, you’ll also find an impressive array of seashells. “If you come when the waves are rolling, you can see the shells from the water,” says Gareth Edmondson-Jones, of the Portuguese Tourism Office. “It is awash with numerous snails, clams, and all kinds of cool and fancy shells.”
Keewaydin Island, Naples, Florida
Fine Art Photos/Shutterstock
If you’re looking for an abundance of seashell-lined beaches, then the Florida Gulf Coast is the region for you. “Keewaydin Island in Naples, Florida, is mostly uninhabited,” says Charles McCool, a travel happiness advocate. “If you visit on a weekday morning, by a private boat shuttle or eco-tour experience, you will likely have at least a mile of pristine beach to yourself. I found dozens of intact, unbroken, and magnificent sand dollars.” Pssst: here’s a guide to the best Florida beaches that locals want to keep secret.
Low Bay, Barbuda
If pink is your favorite color, then feast your eyes on the pink sand beach of Low Bay in Barbuda (one of the two main islands that make up the Caribbean nation Antigua and Barbuda). What gives it this champagne hue? Tiny pink iridescent shells, which are sometimes so plentiful that they make a “tikka tikka” sound when the waves retreat. Check out these other gorgeous pink sand beaches around the world.
Jeffrey’s Bay, South Africa
A treasure trove of shells awaits at South Africa’s world-famous Jeffrey’s Bay. While you can find them year-round, some claim winter seems to be the best time to find seashells of all shapes, sizes, and colors. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, visit the Jeffrey’s Bay Shell Museum, which houses more than 600 species from around the world. To connect with like-minded shell-lovers, don’t miss the annual Shell Festival held each fall.
Somerset Creek Beach, Bahamas
This one-mile long beach on Andros Island—an archipelago within the Bahamas—boasts millions of tiny pastel-colored shells, sand dollars, conchs, and other species. You’ll find the greatest abundance after a large storm, in the shallow pools. A fun fact about this island? It has the world’s largest collection of blue holes, which are one of the most stunning deep-sea sights in the world.