As the summer draws to a close, some of us want to hold on to the warm weather by taking one last vacation to a place that’s free of cold and snow. And there’s nothing more refreshing than taking a dip in a body of water, whether it’s the sea, the lake or a river. Lucky for us, we live in a beautiful planet that offers us amazing, crystal clear waters just waiting to be explored.
These are just some of the world’s clearest waters. There are so many more to gush about, but due to limited space, we had to stick to just fifteen.
15 Linapacan Island, Palawan, Philippines
The province of Palawan is home to some of the most wonderful beaches not just in the Philippines, but in the world. Palawan is comprised of many more little islands, one of which is Linapacan, which has a beach with clear water and white sand. It’s largely unspoilt and the island only has approximately 14,000 inhabitants.
14 The Maldives
There’s a reason the Maldive Islands have become some of the most romantic beach destinations in the world. Sitting in the Indian Ocean, the group of islands has some of the clearest waters and the most colorful, diverse ecosystems on the planet. It’s no surprise that tourism is the island’s main source of livelihood, as the number of resorts have increased over the years to accommodate the flock of tourists wanting to experience a piece of paradise.
13 Peyto Lake, Canada
Though it doesn’t exactly provide the warmth of the beach, Canada’s lakes in the Rockies are some of the most jaw-dropping in the world. Peyto Lake, a glacier-fed body of water, is located in Banff National Park and is best visited in the summer.
During the warm months, glacial rock flour flows into the water and these floating particles give the lake a brilliant, turquoise color. Because of its beauty, the lake is often photographed (sans photoshop!) and published in illustrated books.
12 Crater Lake, Oregon
Almost all crater lakes contain beautiful, clear water and the one in Crater Lake National Park in Oregon is no exception. The lake formed when the volcano, Mount Mazama, collapsed thousands of years ago.
The deepest lake in the United States, Crater Lake is also known as “Old Man of the Lake,” the “old man” pertaining to a full-sized tree (now merely a stump) bobbing vertically in the lake for more than 100 years.
11 Isla Holbox, Mexico
Known as the country for quick holiday getaways of Hollywood stars, Mexico has some of the clearest waters in the world. Isla Holbox is located in the Yucatan Peninsula and is a popular destination for kiteboarding, due to its ideal conditions: shallow waters, a wide, empty expanse of sea, and just the right amount of wind.
10 Cayos Cochinos, Honduras
For tourists who want to escape commercialized tourist attractions, Cayos Cochinos in Honduras is the perfect getaway. The group of islands in the Caribbean Sea is virtually unspoilt and is devoid of roads and instead, contains hiking trails that connect one beach to another. It has some of the healthiest and purest marine life in the area, making it all the more breathtaking.
9 Rio Azul, Argentina
One testament to how pure and clear the water is at Rio Azul, which means “blue river,” is that it’s clean enough to drink. This is because the entire river, located in Argentina, gets its water from the glaciers and snowfields of the Andes, making it of the purest quality. So aside from being safe to drink, the water is also extremely clear and blue.
8 Playa Blanca, Colombia
Playa Blanca or “white beach,” truly lives up to its name. It’s as pure as it’s remote, located 45 minutes away by boat from Cartagena. Walking along the powdery white sand and swimming in its crystal clear waters definitely make the tedious boat ride well-worth the trip. To add to the beach experience, vendors walk along the shores selling fresh ceviche, a definite must try.
7 Bodrum, Turkey
Turkey as a whole is rich in history and the port city of Bodrum boasts of it. Once the site of the Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, Bodrum is also home to some of the most astoundingly clear waters. Many who have taken a dip in the water say that it’s so clear that the boats on it are seemingly suspended in air!
6 Sardinia, Italy
A lovely Mediterranean island off Italy’s western coast, Sardinia is known for its breathtaking beaches and jaw-dropping views of mountains and seas. Visiting Sardinia is hitting two birds with one stone. You can experience history when viewing the ancient structures of some of the cities and towns. And of course, there’s the water to refresh and reinvigorate! The islands have remained untouched by commercial tourism and are considered jewels of the Mediterranean.
5 Valle Verzasca, Switzerland
In Southern Switzerland is located the Verzasca, a 30-kilometer mountain river that flows into well-known Lake Maggiore. Aside from its crystal turquoise waters and exotic-colored rocks, the river also has strong and dangerous currents. But despite this, it’s a renowned scuba diving spot and the valley is often used as a bungee jumping location.
4 Pupu Springs, New Zealand
The beauty of New Zealand cannot be captured even in the most cinematographic movies such as the Lord of the Rings films. Its splendor is best appreciated physically. One of the country’s most beautiful spots is Pupu Springs, located in the country’s South Island. The springs are believed by the Maori people to have spiritually healing powers, most likely due to the water’s absolute clarity and the volume of water discharged by the spring: 14,000 liters per second!
3 Wineglass Bay, Australia
Australia’s gold coast is known the world over for its lovely beaches and surf-ready waters. But many are unaware of Winelgass Bay, located in Tasmania and part of the Freycinet National Park.
The bay features a crescent of white sand and clear blue waters that are further enhanced by the scenic backdrop of pink and grey granite peaks.
2 Belo Sur Mer, Madagascar
Lying on the banks of the Indian Ocean is the coastal town of Belo Sur Mer in Madagascar. But there are waters even clearer than the one on the coast. There are scores of virgin islands 80 kilometers off the coast and accessible by boat, islands containing the most pristine of waters and sands. Snorkeling is a wonderful activity for these islands filled with amazing marine life and a huge amount of amazing, deep ocean fish.
1 Marsa Matrouh, Egypt
Egypt is known for its pyramids and deserts, but not very many know that it has some of the most breathtaking waters in the world. The Marsa Matrouh, which is located west of the ancient city of Alexandria, has beautiful beaches with clear, aqua waters and soft white sand. Its relatively calm waters are a result of the island being protected from the high seas by a series of rock formations, making it all the more calm and serene for beach dwellers.