WHEN we’re on holiday we’re thinking as much about the photos that we’re taking as we are about the sun on our skin.
Luckily, for Instagram fans who want to take photos close to home, the UK is home to three of the most Instagrammable beaches in Europe..
Research by Globehunters analysed Instagram hashtags and looked at the top 60 most Instagrammed beaches in Europe.
While the number one spot was handed to Positano, situated on Italy’s Amalfi Coast, beaches in the UK made up half of the top six.
Three classic British coastal spots that featured in the top ten – Brighton, Durdle Door and Bournemouth.
And UK beaches make up 15 per cent of the overall top 60 beaches in Europe in total.
So you won’t have to go too far for that perfect Instagram photo – some of the most favourable beaches are right on your doorstep.
Here’s the top 15 most Instagrammed beaches – and where to stay if you want to visit.
1. Positano, Amalfi Coast
This stunning Italian pebble beach is next to a cliff side village made up of multi-coloured houses – and you can instantly see why it’s an Instagram winner.
Fishing boats bob about next to beach-side fish restaurants, which look like the perfect spot for a romantic lunch.
The town has featured in films like Only You and Kath and Kimderella, and the Rolling Stones also wrote music while staying in Positano.
The Amalfi coast is also the home of Limoncello – it would be rude not to try a shot of the local lemon liqueur.
Hotels are very expensive in Positano in the summer so your best bet is an Airbnb, like this two bed house at £45 per night in June.
2. Brighton, East Sussex
Brighton is a classic British seaside town – from arcades to fish and chips and the town’s famous pier, you can’t go wrong here.
The beach also looks great on Instagram which is why it’s come out as the top beach in the UK on Instagram, and second in Europe.
If you’re not sunning yourself on the beach with an ice cream, you’ll want to head to the trendy Lanes for vintage shopping and plenty of beers.
Brighton is also brilliant for nightlife – which is why it’s the choice of many stag and hen parties for a wild weekend away.
Stay at Bow Street Runner for £75 per night for a double including breakfast in July.
3. Nissi beach, Ayia Napa
Cyprus party capital Ayia Napa isn’t just about booze and clubbing – as the pictures on Instagram show.
The island also has beautiful white sandy beaches, and Nissi beach is awarded a blue flag due to its clear waters, making it an excellent spot for waterskiing and windsurfing.
But you can’t ignore the fact that Nissi beach is a place to let your hair down, with people flocking to the popular Nissi Bay Beach Bar.
Head into town for freshly caught seafood and the town’s landmark, the Ayia Napa Monastery.
Stay at the Eleni Apartments for £66 per night per apartment in July.
4. Durdle Door, Dorset
Durdle Door’s iconic natural limestone arch has made it an Instagram favourite for those visiting the Jurassic coast in Lulworth, Dorset.
The archway was declared as England’s first natural World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 2001 – up there with the Grand Canyon and the Great Barrier Reef.
The beach next to the arch is made from pebbles and is good spot for rock-pooling, plus you’ll want to take a walk over the cliff at White Noathe which was once a smuggler’s path.
Stay at Leap House in nearby Wareham for £1316 for seven nights in July, which sleeps five.
5. Playa d’en Bossa, Ibiza
Playa d’en Bossa is where many of Ibiza’s big hotels are situated – and we can see why.
The 1.7 mile-long beach is the longest on the island and is very varied – some spots are quiet, while some have much more of a party vibe.
It’s also home to beach clubs like Nassau and Beachouse Ibiza for food, drinks and dancing.
Stay at Club La Noria for £135 per room per night in July.
6. Bournemouth, Dorset
Closer to home, the Dorset town of Bournemouth is a popular family favourite because of its seven miles of sandy beaches.
There are four blue flag beaches at Bournemouth including Alum Chine, Durley Chine, Southbourne and Fisherman’s Walk.
The town also has a pier with arcade games, rides and ice creams.
Bournemouth Gardens are also worth a visit in summer, which follow the Bourne Stream and have a Victorian bandstand – plenty more Instagram opportunities there.
Stay at the Ravensbourne Hotel for £59 per double room per night in July.
7. La Pelosa beach, Stintino
Head to Stintino, a small town in Sardinia for crystal-clear shallow waters and views across to Piana Island.
The beach is known as the most beautiful in Sardinia, and is known for its fishing boats and local seafood – the area is known for its tuna.
Pelosa has turquoise waters and is perfect for families who want to go paddling and snorkeling.
And of course you’ll want to pop in for seafood spaghetti at the Albergo Ristorante Silvestrino in the town centre – it’s been there since 1948.
Stay at B&B La Posada Stintino for £83 per night for a double room with breakfast included in July.
8. Praia da Rocha, Algarve
The bustling resort of Praia da Rocha is a summer favourite for families due to its size.
Even in high summer you’ll be able to get a good spot along the 1.2 mile beach as there is so much space.
You can also go to see the dramatic rock formations at nearby Praia dos Tres Castelos which looks like pyramids.
There’s also a nearby waterpark called Slide and Splash.
Stay at Hotel Luar for £60 for a twin room including breakfast in July.
9. Barceloneta, Barcelona
Barcelona is as good for a beach break as it is for a weekend of culture.
There are over 2.6 miles of golden sandy beaches which are just ten minutes from the city centre – including popular Barceloneta, which is close to the metro and very nice to photograph indeed.
You can also try out paddle-boarding at Playa del Vela, which starts at around €15 (£13) for an hour with an instructor, a life jacket and use of lockers and changing rooms.
Stay at Camino B&B with rooms starting at £96 per night for a double in July and breakfast is an additional £3.
10. Cala Salada, Ibiza
This pretty cove beach in Ibiza is a world away from the long, hotel-lined beaches at Playa d’en Bossa.
Small and chilled, you’ll find turquoise waters surrounded by pine forests.
You can hire pedalos, or just relax on a sun lounger with a cocktail in hand.
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You can also walk to the caves at San Fontanelles to see cave paintings which date back to the Bronze Ages – the walk takes about an hour and a half, so wear sensible footwear and sun cream.
Stay at Apartamentos Formentera for £85 per night per apartment in July.
Prices were correct at the time of writing.
Recently, we revealed the hidden gems of the Mexican west coast Puerto Vallarta and Riviera Nayarit, where visitors can surf, take a stroll or see a local west end show.
We also got the chance to fly on the first 17-hour direct flight from Australia to London on Qantas, and reviewed the journey.
If shorter flights are more your thing, we suggest taking a visit to Marrakech where you can soak up the sun and sites while saving a pretty penny.
The rest of the top 60 most Instagrammed beaches in Europe
11. Kleopatra beach, Alanya, Egypt
12. Reynisfjara, Vik, Iceland
13. Playa de la Concha, San Sebastian, Spain
14. Pampelonne beach, St Tropez, France
15. Playa de Las Canteras, Gran Canaria, Spain
16. Punta Proscuitto, Puglia, Italy
17. Navagio Bay, Zakynthos, Greece
18. Falesia beach, Olhos de Agua, Portugal
19. Zlatni Rat, Brac, Croatia
20. Fig Tree Bay, Protaras, Cyprus
21. Balos beach, Crete, Greece
22. Elafonissi beach, Elafonissi, Greece
23. Butterfly Valley, Fethiye, Turkey
24. Playa de Ses Illetes, Formentara, Spain
25. Porthcurno, Cornwall
26. Playa de las Catedrales, Ribadeo, Spain
27. Ploumanac’h, Brittany, France
28. Myrtos beach, Kefalonia, Greece
29. Cala Goloritze, Sardinia, Italy
30. Porthmeor beach, St Ives
31. Tropea beach, Tropea, Italy
32. Spiaggia Capriccioli, Sardinia, Italy
33. Weymouth beach, Dorset
34. Iztuzu beach, Dalyan, Turkey
35. Oludeniz beach, Oludeniz, Turkey
36. Inch beach, Ireland
37. Jurmala beach, Jurmala, Latvia
38. Blackpool beach, Blackpool
39. Paloma beach, Saint Jean Cap Ferrat, France
40. Konnos beach, Ayia Napa, Cyprus
41. Ramla Gay, Gozo, Malta
42. Cala Macarella, Menora, Spain
43. Spiaggia del Principe, Costa Smeralda, Sardinia
44. Praia Dona Ana, Algarve, Porugal
45. Banje beach, Dubrovnik, Croatia
46. Rhossili Bay, Rhossili
47. Ghajn Tiffieha, Golden May, Malta
48. Larvotto Beach, Monte Carlo, Monaco
49. Tenby beach, Tenby
50. Simos beach, Elafonisos, Greece
51. Spaggia dei Conigli, Rabbit Beach, Sicily
52. Blue Lagoon, Comino, Malta
53. Makronissos, Ayia Napa, Cyprus
54. Jaz beach, Budva, Montenegro
55. Praia de Marinha, Algarve, Portugal
56. Sveti Stefan, Sveti Stefan, Montenegro
57. Brela beach, Brela, Croatia
58. Voutoumi, Antipaxi, Greece
59. Luskentyre beach, Luskentyre
60. Lara Bay, Paphos, Greece
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