15 Pink Sand Beaches in 11 Countries with Map

15 Pink Sand Beaches in 11 Countries with Map

Pink sand beaches offer a unique and picturesque experience for beach lovers. These rare beaches owe their distinctive hue to tiny marine organisms known as foraminifera, which have red and pink shells rich in calcium carbonate. When these creatures die, their shells are crushed by waves and mixed with sand and bits of coral, creating the soft, rosy sands that draw visitors from around the world. These are different from pink lakes which gets it color from algae and bacteria.

Located in 11 countries all over the world, pink sand beaches are natural marvels that offer visual splendor, but also provide ideal conditions for water-based activities such as snorkeling and swimming. Use reef safe sunscreens to help preserving the conditions that gives rise to the pink sands.

Make sure to double-check the photos and read reviews about pink sand beaches. Many photos are enhanced through editing and may not represent how the beaches actually look in real life. They may not be as vibrant as the photos suggest.

Map of Pink Sand Beaches in the World

The Bahamas

Harbour Island

Gentle waves on a pink sandy beach.
Photo credit: ZxVisual via Canva Pro.

The Bahamas is home to some of the most stunning beaches in the world, and its vibrant pink sand beaches are the most popular ones as well. And for good reason. Harbour Island is famed for its Pink Sands Beach, stretching over three miles along the east coast of the island.

How to get there? Fly into Nassau International Airport (NAS) and then take a short domestic flight to North Eleuthera Airport (ELH). From there, take a ferry to Harbour Island. The cost is $250.00 per adult and $180.00 per child (2 – 11 years) for the roundtrip travel, and $135.00 per adult and $100.00 per child (2 – 11 years) for one-way travel taxes included (2024 prices).

WHERE TO STAYFind the most sustainable eco-lodges in the Bahamas.

French Leave Beach, Eleuthera

Intense pink colored beach with small waves up close.
Photo credit: Vladyslav Danilin via Canva Pro.

French Leave Beach, also found in Eleuthera, offers a less frequented yet equally beautiful pink sand experience. The beach is known for its wide expanse of soft, pale pink sand and is a haven for those seeking tranquility. The calm and clear water here makes it excellent for swimming.

How to get there? Fly directly to North Eleuthera Airport (ELH), then rent a car or take a taxi to reach French Leave Beach since the island has no public transport system.

Lighthouse Beach, Eleuthera

At the southern tip of Eleuthera lies Lighthouse Beach. It is another location somewhat remote, and offering an arguably more private beach experience.

How to get there? Fly directly to Rock Sound Airport (RSD). Since there are no public buses, you need to rent a car or take a taxi.

WHERE TO STAYFind the most sustainable eco-lodges in the Bahamas.


Horseshoe Bay Beach

Pink sandy beach with turquoise calm sea
Photo credit: Diane Frebert via Unsplash.

Horseshoe Bay Beach is situated in Southampton in Bermuda. The sand here has a soft pink colour, a vivid contrast to the bright teal seawater. The beach’s crescent shape means usually serene waters, making it an ideal spot for swimming.

How to get there? Fly to L.F. Wade International Airport (BDA). From the airport, Horseshoe Bay is accessible by taxi, rental car, or public bus.


Pink Sands Beach

Pink sandy beach with calm turquoise waves.
Photo credit: Blue Orange Studios via Canva Pro.

Pink Sands Beach stretches along the coast of Barbuda until 17-Mile Beach and is a draw for tourists seeking its photogenic shores. The beach’s sand gets its pink hue from tiny shells and pieces of coral that blend with the white sand. It’s a natural phenomenon that’s particularly prominent from October to January each year. The last of it remains the longest near the Frigate Bird Sanctuary.

How to get there? Barbuda is part of the twin-island nation with Antigua. To get to the beach you need to fly into Antigua (ANU) first, then take the Barbuda Ferry. The adult round trip ferry ticket is USD 100. For children between 3-11 the price is USD 65, and for children from 0-2 it is USD 20. (2024 prices). The northern part of the beach (next to the sanctuary) is only accessible by boat.


Crane Beach

A beach with sand, palm trees and turquoise water.
Photo credit: TommL via Canva Pro.

Crane Beach, located in St. Philip, is celebrated for its distinctive soft pink-hued sand, resulting from finely crushed coral. The sand’s soft texture and the beach’s crystal-clear waters make it a preferred spot for swimming and sunbathing.

How to get there? Fly to Grantley Adams International Airport (BGI) then. Crane Beach is easily reachable by taxi, rental car, or public transport.


Pantai Merah Komodo

Pink sandy beach with light blue calm water and small rocky hills in the background.
Photo credit: Wenika Febrianti via Canva Pro.

Komodo National Park is home to the famous Pink Beach, also known as Pantai Merah. This beach is one of only a handful vibrant pink sand beaches. The coloration comes from red coral fragments mixing with white sand. The area is inhabited by the iconic Komodo Dragons, contributing to the national park’s protection status. Visitors can enjoy the contrast of the light pink sands against the backdrop of blue waters.

How to get there? Situated in east Indonesia, the park is accessible from the fishing town of Labuan Bajo. So, first fly to Bali International Airport (BDS), take a domestic flight to Labuan Bajo, and then join a boat tour to Komodo Island.

Tangsi Beach, Lombok

Pink sandy beach from above with green ocean and rocks.
Photo credit: Christopher Moswitzer via Canva Pro.

On the east coast of Lombok lies the lesser-known Tangsi Beach, commonly referred to as Pink Beach. Its secluded locations contribute to its pristine conditions and enchanting appeal. Reaching this remote area involves a 35-mile journey on the road, making the tranquility all the more rewarding for those who make the trip.

How to get there? Fly to Lombok International Airport (LOP) and then drive or take a guided tour to reach Tangsi Beach.


Elafonissi Beach, Crete

Pink sand with gentle waves and rocks
Photo credit: Alexandra Tran via Unsplash.

Elafonissi Beach is celebrated for its distinctive pink sands, which owe their color to the tiny red organisms that, when mixed with white sand. This beach is not only a visual marvel but also a protected nature reserve.

How to get there? Fly to Chania International Airport (CHQ) and rent a car or take a bus for a scenic drive (50-60 miles) to Elafonissi Beach. Or join a boat tour or private island tour including the beach.

Balos Lagoon, Crete

A lagoon from above surrounded by rock and sandy shores.
Photo credit: Happy Trip via Canva Pro.

Similarly, Balos Lagoon Beach has pink sand, contrasting with the turquoise sea and wild, natural surroundings. This remote and unspoiled location is accessible by trekking or by boat, offering a more secluded experience. Since facilities are limited, bring necessities with you.

How to get there? – Fly to Chania International Airport (CHQ), then drive to Kissamos Port and take a ferry or boat trip to Balos Lagoon, or trek down by car on a challenging dirt road. Here is a detailed guide with all info you need.


Playa De Ses Illetes, Formentera

A beach from afar with turquoise water, sandy beach with small islands in the water.
Photo credit: Jürge Sack via Canva Pro.

On the tranquil island of Formentera, visitors can find Playa de Ses Illetes, renowned for its crystalline waters and subtle pink-hued sand. It is more like a rosé effect that is particularly visible during sunrise and sunset. This beach not only offers a picturesque environment but is also easily accessible, adding to its appeal for those exploring the Spanish coasts.

How to get there? Fly to Ibiza (IBZ), then take a ferry from Ibiza to Formentera. The ride is approx. 30 minutes and costs EUR 49 per passenger (2024 prices). Then the beach is accessible by public transport, rental car, sailing tour, or bike from the port.


Spiaggia Rosa, Budelli, Sardinia

A beach with rocky, sand and calm sea.
Photo credit: Mike Carballo via Canva Pro.

Spiaggia Rosa, situated on the small island of Budelli, stands out with its visibly pink sand. The beach is within the Maddalena archipelago in northern Sardinia, which is known for its crystal-clear waters and captivating natural landscapes. It belongs to the La Maddalena National Park, so you need a tour guide to access it. The national park fee is EUR 3 in addition to the guide’s fee.

How to get there? Fly to Olbia (OLB) in Sardinia, then take a boat tour from Palau. Access is restricted to protect the beach, you need to book a guided tour.


Great Santa Cruz Island

Great Santa Cruz Island in the Philippines is famous for its soft pink sand beach, a rare sight caused by the pulverized red organ-pipe coral mixed with white sand. Located off the coast of Zamboanga City, the island offers pristine waters and a peaceful retreat from the busier mainland.

How to get there? Fly to Zamboanga International Airport (ZAM), head to Paseo del Mar to arrange a boat ride to the island. Travel is regulated to preserve the beach’s natural beauty, so booking a tour in advance, especially during peak season, is advised.

French Polynesia

Les Sables Roses

Mix of pink and white sand with calm light blue waters.
Photo credit: Julien Couanon via Canva Pro.

Les Sables Roses, in French Polynesia, offers a secluded paradise with its blush-tinted beaches set against the backdrop of crystal-clear lagoons. This remote pink sand beach is located on the atoll of Rangiroa, renowned for its untouched natural beauty and vibrant marine life.

How to get there? Fly to Tahiti’s Faa’a International Airport (PPT), then take a domestic flight to Avatoru. From there, access to Les Sables Roses typically involves a boat trip, which can be arranged through local tour operators. Given its remote location, visitors are encouraged to plan their visit carefully and in advance.

USA – Not Pink, But Purple

Pfeiffer Beach, California

Purple hue on brown sandy beach with waves and a giant rock formation with a hole in the middle behind it.
Photo credit: Jeison Jamarillo via Canva Pro.

Pfeiffer Beach, located in Big Sur, California, is known for its unique purple sand, which acquires its color from manganese garnet particles washed down from the surrounding cliffs. This beach is not only famous for its distinctive sand but also for its stunning rock formations and the iconic keyhole arch.

How to get there? Fly into San Francisco International Airport (SFO) or Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), then drive to Big Sur along the scenic Pacific Coast Highway (Highway 1). Pfeiffer Beach is accessed via Sycamore Canyon Road, a narrow, winding road off Highway 1. The beach has a parking lot with a fee (USD 12 per parking – 2024 prices), and from there, it’s a short walk to the beach.

Check for updates here as the beach can be closed due to high waters. If you find it closed, visit the Sykes Hot Springs nearby.

WHERE TO STAYFind the most sustainable eco-lodges in California.
Post Ranch Inn is right around the corner.


What causes the pink coloration in pink sand beaches?

The unique pink hue of these beaches is usually due to Foraminifera, minuscule red organisms with calcium carbonate shells that, upon death, wash ashore and blend with the sand.

Where are the most famous pink sand beaches located?

Bermuda (Horseshoe Bay), the Bahamas (Harbour Island and Eleuthera) and Indonesia (Komodo and Lombok) have sandy beaches with the strongest pink colour.

Can pink sand beaches be found in the United States?

No. Pfeiffer Beach in California is the closest with a slight purple hue mixed with light brown sand. Some of Florida beaches has white quartz sand which turns pink during sunset. But none of them what you would expect from a pink sand beach.

How rare are pink sand beaches compared to regular sand beaches?

Pink sand beaches are relatively uncommon when compared to regular sand beaches due to the specific natural conditions required for the pink hue to develop.

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Emese Maczko is a travel blogger behind Eco Lodges Anywhere. Having explored several destinations around Europe, the US, Indonesia, and Australia, and resided in Germany, the United Kingdom, and Luxembourg, Emese possesses a keen understanding of diverse cultures and an appreciation for the beauty of each destination she visits. She advocates for sustainable travel and ecotourism.