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Beach Breaks for December Holidays

Soaking up the summer sun, wading knee-deep in cool turquoise waters and having your favourite drink handed to you as you watch the sun descend over the ocean. If this is your idea of the perfect December holiday, then grab your sunscreen and your towel and head to one of these prime seaside locations.


If a warm beach holiday is what you’re looking for, look no further than Durban on the east coast of South Africa. Thanks to the tepid waters of the Indian Ocean, there are a number of beaches to choose from that make up Durban’s Golden Mile, including Umhlanga Rocks and Umdloti Beach. One of your first stops should certainly be North Beach, with its robust waves and long promenade that is always bustling with joggers, prams and locals walking their dogs. Take a stroll along one of the piers before making your way to one of the nearby food stalls. An early morning walk will reward you with an exquisite sunrise over the water. North Beach is also within walking distance of uShaka Marine World, South Africa’s favourite marine theme park. Take the kids along and get up close and personal with the ocean’s most dangerous creatures. With its charming atmosphere, lukewarm water, and its reputation for surfing, it’s no wonder Durban is a popular seaside playground.

Cape Town

South Africa’s Mother City is a seaside paradise with postcard views and some of the most idyllic beaches in the world. Although it isn’t the ideal spot for swimming, Cape Town’s Sea Point beaches offer a cosy spot for picnicking and tanning in the sun below the promenade. If you feel like exploring, there are a number of coves and rock pools for the kids to splash around in and the promenade itself is a popular pathway for joggers and walkers. One of the most famous beaches in Cape Town has to be Camps Bay, which is one of the best spots for beach volleyball, sunset cocktails and family fun. Relax in the shade of the trees or sun bathe on this magnificent stretch of sand before making your way to one of the trendy beachfront bars. It’s worth a visit, just to see the impressive peaks of the Twelve Apostles in all their glory. For a seaside experience that you won’t soon forget, head to Boulders Beach near Simon’s Town, the naval base of this picturesque city. This somewhat secluded cove of beach is home to a large colony of endangered African penguins and the kids can watch these entertaining birds all day as they waddle between the granite boulders.


Retreat to this magical paradise in the Indian Ocean, surrounded by coral reefs, golden beaches and plenty of adventure. Mauritius offers a wealth of luxurious accommodation options and activities for solo travellers, couples, or families looking for a relaxing beach break. There are a number of exquisite public beaches with parking and toilets, but the hotels have certainly claimed the most idyllic spots. Trou aux Biches is one of the best beaches in the north for swimming and snorkelling as it’s protected by a coral reef. It is also ideal for families as the sand is soft, the water is clear and calm and there are various street food stands and cafés. The western part of the island has the most agreeable climate and Flic en Flac is one of the most popular beaches in this region. The Tamarin and Le Morne beaches also have an international reputation for their surfing conditions and turquoise waters.


Its rich past is sprinkled with a history of slavery, sultans and spice trade, which makes Zanzibar as intriguing as it is beautiful. In the north, Nungwi and Kendwa offer the widest and most exquisite beaches scattered with luxurious hotels for tourists. This is where you’ll find the coveted sapphire waters of the idyllic beach holiday that you’ve always dreamed about and if your trip falls during the full moon, you’ll have an opportunity to party on the beach with the locals until the sun rises. Paje and Jambiani in the east are popular kite-surfing destinations and there are unbeatable snorkelling excursions on offshore reefs that depart from both the northern and eastern beaches. Chances are that there’s a deliciously fresh seafood barbecue waiting for you on your return.


Surfing, meditation, forested volcanoes and coral reefs. Explore the tropical and mysterious beauty of Bali during your next December holiday. Bali’s rich assortment of beaches ranges from the ivory sand coasts of Kuta and Nusa Dua in the south to the secluded shores of Uluwatu and Bingin. Kuta Beach, the island’s most famous beach resort destination, is a favourite among surfers and beachcombers from Australia. Seminyak is Bali's most fashionable beach, offering a hub of luxurious resorts, fine restaurants, fashion boutiques and world-class cuisine. For the real tourist, Nusa Dua is lined with temples, museums and other attractions and it is the perfect spot for a romantic honeymoon.


Outstanding tropical beaches are synonymous with Phuket and with more than 30 beaches strewn around the island; there are plenty of sunny sunbathing spots to choose from. Whether you prefer a lively atmosphere or the tranquillity of a secluded beach, Phuket has something for everyone. Kata Beach is just 1.5km in length but this charming coastline has everything that the discerning beachcomber could ask for, including soft sand and clear waters. If you’re the adventurous type, surfing is recommended in the low season and snorkelling in the high season and there are some budget food and drink vendors close by for when you’ve worked up an appetite. Freedom Beach is by far the most relaxing and peaceful stretch of sand as it comes without the expected noise of jet skis, parasailing and busy vendors. However, you’ll need to take a boat or a steep footpath down a hill in order to access it, which makes it feel far more exclusive.

Abu Dhabi

Warm weather, plenty of sunlight and award-winning beaches await you in Abu Dhabi, the capital city of the United Arab Emirates. You’ll have plenty of sunny spots to choose from, whether it’s a public or private beach, island or hotel beach club. The Corniche beach is an 8km stretch of sand that has won Blue Flag status for its pristine and safe conditions. There are also a number of cafés and restaurants nearby for when the hunger pangs hit. Saadiyat Public Beach is overseen by BAKE, a beach management company that provides holiday-goers with loungers, towels, lockers, showers and changing rooms for convenience. A popular spot for locals and expats is Al Bateen Beach, which has a friendly family atmosphere and a calm sea. For the more ambitious holiday-maker, there are kayaks and stand-up paddleboards for hire. Solo female travellers may appreciate the Blue Flag Al Bataan Beach reserved for women. This private beach can accommodate over 1 000 women and children, with female lifeguards to ensure complete safety.

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