Wondering how many beaches in Australia are there?
If so, you’ve come to the right place! Living in Australia, I have a bit of a love affair with the beach – my happy place. Most weekends, you’ll find me by the sea, with the calming waves, the sandy shores, and the sun shining down (or the chill winter wind, which has its perks – hello, easy parking!).
With 35,877 kilometres of coastline, it’s no surprise that Australia is brimming with beaches. But exactly how many are there? And, more importantly, which of these numerous sandy stretches are truly worth visiting?
In this blog post, we’re not only answering the burning question – ‘how many beaches in Australia are there?’ but we’re also sharing the insider’s scoop on the must-visit beaches in each state, the most famous beaches and lesser-known beaches around Australia.
How Many Beaches are there in Australia?
🏝 It’s been estimated by the University of Sydney that Australia is home to approximately 12,000 beaches. To put that in perspective, if you were to visit a different beach every day, it would take you nearly 29 years to set foot on all of them!
So, you might be asking how Australia accommodates so many beaches. Well, the answer lies in its sheer size.
Australia, the sixth-largest country in the world by total area, spans an impressive 7.7 million square kilometres. It’s this expansive size, coupled with the country’s unique geographical positioning, that lays the groundwork for such a vast number of beaches.
But the real secret to the multitude of beaches in Australia lies in its incredibly lengthy coastline. Imagine embarking on a journey along the Australian coast; it would be an impressive 34,000 kilometres – ranked the 7th longest coastline in the world.
To comprehend the sheer length of this coastline, imagine journeying around the Earth’s equator – you’d need to complete one and a half laps to match the size of Australia’s coastal boundary.
This immense coastline not only gifts Australia with a myriad of beaches but also blesses it with the world’s largest barrier reef, the Great Barrier Reef.
This remarkable coastline isn’t just monotonous sand and surf either; it ranges from the sublime, crystal clear waters and pristine white sands of Queensland’s coastline, to the dramatic, rugged, and windswept shores of Tasmania, culminating in a unique and diverse beachscape that’s unparalleled anywhere else in the world.
Exploring the Stunning Diversity of Beaches Across Australia’s States and Territories
The diversity of beaches in Australia reflects the country’s vast geographical spread and climatic variations.
In the tropical north, expect warm, palm-fringed beaches alongside beautiful coral reefs. Progressing south, the beaches blend with bustling cityscapes and dynamic surf cultures.
Further south, Tasmania’s coastline presents rugged and wild beauty, where imposing cliffs and forests meet the ocean.
Over on the expansive Western Australian coastline, the isolation of many beaches brings unparalleled tranquillity.
Lastly, the Northern Territory showcases where Australia’s red desert meets the blue sea, offering a striking contrast that’s distinctly Australian.
Each state and territory offers unique beach experiences, a testament to the remarkable natural diversity that Australia boasts. So whilst the answer to the question ‘how many beaches in Australia are there?’ is thousands, it is important to note that each beach is completely unique and different.
How many beaches in New South Wales are there? – and which are the best?
With Sydney’s harbour and coastline alone being home to over 100 beaches, it’s clear that New South Wales is a beach lover’s paradise, boasting a staggering total of 892 recorded beaches.
And it’s not just human who benefit, Sydney is home to some of the best dog-friendly beachs in Australia.
Yet, there’s a world beyond the well-trodden sands of Bondi. Here are a few standout beaches in New South Wales that truly deserve their moment in the sun:
📍Manly Beach, North Sydney
First up is Manly Beach, located on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. A short ferry ride from Circular Quay, Manly offers a unique blend of coastal charm and cosmopolitan flair.
Its tree-lined promenade, packed with eclectic eateries and boutique stores, is as much a draw as its extensive sandy beach.
Known for its consistent surf, Manly attracts both novice and seasoned surfers.
Nearby attractions include the Manly Art Gallery and Museum and the North Head Sanctuary, where you can enjoy panoramic views of Sydney Harbour.
📍Hyams Beach, Jervis Bay
Next on our list is Jervis Bay’s Hyams Beach, located on the South Coast. Acclaimed for having the whitest sand in the world, according to the Guinness World Records, it’s an absolute must-visit.
This stunning location offers calm, crystal-clear waters ideal for snorkelling, with the chance to spot dolphins frolicking offshore.
Nearby, the Booderee National Park provides bushwalking trails and an array of native wildlife, adding to the area’s natural appeal.
📍Wategos Beach, Byron Bay
Finally, let’s head north to the picturesque coastal town of Byron Bay and its lesser-known beach, Wategos Beach.
This sheltered beach offers a tranquil atmosphere, making it perfect for a relaxing dip or picnic.
Its calm waters make it a popular spot for stand-up paddleboarding, and you might even be lucky enough to spot some turtles!
On the walking trail to the iconic Cape Byron Lighthouse, keep an eye out for the local wildlife, including wallabies and various bird species.
With its blend of natural beauty, wildlife, and laid-back charm, Wategos is quintessential Byron Bay.
How many beaches in Queensland are there? – and which are The best?
Queensland, aptly named the Sunshine State, is home to Australia’s second-longest stretch of coastline (a whopping 13,347km!), and also lays claim to nearly 2,000 enchanting islands and a breathtaking count of 1,711 beaches.
📍Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast
Situated between Surfers Paradise and Coolangatta, Burleigh Heads Beach offers a picturesque coastline with a vibe that’s distinctly more laid-back and local.
This beach isn’t just known for its fantastic surf and clear waters, it’s also a great spot for nature and wildlife enthusiasts.
Adjacent to the beach is the Burleigh Heads National Park, a subtropical paradise with walking tracks that offer sweeping coastal views and a chance to spot native wildlife like echidnas and sea eagles.
Off the beach, Burleigh Heads does not disappoint. The town is home to a thriving food and coffee scene, with an array of cafes, restaurants, and markets to explore.
James Street, in particular, is a hotspot for boutique shopping, where you can find everything from local crafts to high-end fashion.
And when the sun sets, make your way to John Laws Park. It’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike to gather for a beachfront picnic and enjoy live music performances, with a magnificent view of the sun setting over the beach.
📍Nudey Beach, Fitzroy Island
Fitzroy Island, off the coast of Cairns in North Queensland, is home to one of Australia’s most beautifully unique beaches – Nudey Beach.
No, don’t let the name fool you, it’s not a nude beach. However, it certainly strips back the noise of the world and lets you enjoy nature in its raw form.
Nudey Beach is tucked away amidst the lush rainforest and granite boulders of Fitzroy Island. A 15-minute walk along a scenic track from the island’s resort brings you to Nudey Beach, a stunning mosaic of coral and shell fragments washed ashore from the Great Barrier Reef.
The vibrant turquoise waters here offer incredible snorkelling opportunities. As you explore the underwater world, you’ll encounter a kaleidoscope of tropical fish, clams, and even the occasional sea turtle.
Aside from snorkelling, you can hike the nearby trails that offer panoramic views of the Coral Sea or just relax and soak up the sun on the shore. The backdrop of the rainforest and the rhythmic sound of waves hitting the coral shoreline creates a soothing, almost hypnotic, environment.
📍Palm Cove, Cairns
Lastly, we head to Palm Cove in Cairns. This upscale beach location, with its palm-lined shores and calm waters, is a haven for relaxation and rejuvenation. It’s also a hotspot for water sports, including kayaking and jet skiing.
Proximity to attractions like the Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest makes Palm Cove an excellent base for exploring Queensland’s remarkable natural wonders. You’ll find wildlife like wallabies and rainbow lorikeets in the surrounding areas.
How many Beaches in South Australia are there – and which is best?
With an impressive collective coastline length of 4,204km – including a 3,273km mainland stretch, a 458km slice on Kangaroo Island, and an additional 473km dispersed across 106 islands – South Australia showcases raw and untamed beauty in spades.
Amongst its tally of 1,755 beaches, many remain unnamed, underscoring just how pristine and secluded this part of Australia truly is.
📍Vivonne Bay, Kangaroo Island
First up is Vivonne Bay, an enchanting beach that once stole the title of ‘Australia’s Best Beach’.
Tucked away in South Australia, this six-kilometre stretch of pure bliss invites you to experience the simple pleasure of unspoiled nature. With its crystal-clear waters caressing the pristine sugar-white sands, it’s the quintessential private island escape – minus the crowd.
Vivonne Bay is refreshingly minimalistic, boasting only the essentials – the beach, a quaint jetty, and you. This simplicity is precisely its charm. Here, you’ll find no distractions, allowing the untouched natural surroundings to work their magic on your senses.
So, how will you spend your time in this slice of paradise? Take a refreshing plunge into the ocean, or unwind with a laid-back picnic on the sands.
Fishing enthusiasts can enjoy casting a line off the jetty, while wildlife lovers are in for a treat with potential dolphin and seal sightings.
📍Glenelg Beach, Adelaide
Glenelg Beach, right on Adelaide’s doorstep, is a hit with locals and visitors, and for good reason. This isn’t just any beach Glenelg delivers an experience that feels more like a charming neighbourhood gathering than a simple seaside outing.
It’s the kind of beach where families come for the day and end up staying well into the evening. The Glenelg Foreshore Playground, right there on the beach, keeps the little ones entertained for hours. It’s a real crowd-pleaser and gives a wholesome, family-focused vibe to the place.
Just a stone’s throw from the beach, Moseley Square brings the atmosphere of a bustling village square. It’s dotted with charming eateries, shops, and more than a fair share of ice cream parlours, perfect for a post-beach treat.
All in all, Glenelg Beach creates this heartwarming blend of seaside tranquillity and lively community spirit that’s truly unique to South Australia
📍Second Valley Beach, Adelaide
In the Fleurieu Peninsula’s rugged charm, you’ll find the lesser-known but utterly captivating Second Valley Beach. This little pocket of paradise, cocooned by cliffs and rugged terrain, offers a unique blend of land and sea experiences.
Second Valley Beach’s real charm lies in its distinctive landscape. Characterized by its clear turquoise waters bordered by jagged cliffs and historic jetties, it’s a striking picture that’s begging to be photographed.
Whether you’re a keen snorkeler, an avid diver or simply love a good swim, the crystalline waters are filled with colourful marine life.
The dramatic rocky coastline not only makes for stunning views but is also a delight for explorers. Traversing through the area reveals hidden caves and secluded sandy pockets, perfect for those seeking a bit of adventure or solitude.
And if you’re a fan of fishing, the historic Second Valley Jetty is a local favourite spot, where you can cast a line and enjoy the peaceful surroundings.
How many beaches in Tasmania are there?- and which are the best?
Boasting a collection of 1,617 beaches – with 1,269 adorning its mainland and 348 scattered across its five principal islands – Tasmania is an embodiment of wild and untouched charm. Let’s take a look at Tasmania’s best beaches:
📍Wineglass Bay, Freycinet National Park
Wineglass Bay in Tasmania is more than just a beach; it’s an iconic symbol of the island’s natural beauty. If you’re up for a hike, the trails leading to the lookout on the Hazards or the peak of Mount Amos promise breathtaking views.
On the other hand, a leisurely stroll down to the beach rewards you with powdery white sand underfoot and crystalline waters stretching to the horizon.
Interestingly, the name Wineglass Bay harks back to a time when whaling was a common practice. The bay’s southern end once hosted a whaling station, and the waters would run red, likening it to a wine-filled glass.
Today, the pristine conditions offer no hint of its less glamorous past, reminding us of nature’s resilience.
📍Bay of Fires, Binalong Bay
You’d be hard-pressed to find a beach that screams ‘Tasmania’ quite like the Bay of Fires. Picture this: pristine white sand, rich blue waters, and granite cliffs draped in a vivid orange lichen.
Quite the eyeful, isn’t it? It’s easy enough to explore by car, just follow the coast north from Binalong Bay towards The Gardens.
Want to really dig in? Embark on a four-day trek along the shore with the Bay of Fires Lodge Walk or the Wukalina Walk.
Whether you’re strolling from cove to cove or diving headfirst into a multi-day adventure, Bay of Fires promises an experience as vibrant as its headlands.
📍Ocean Beach, Strahan
While you wouldn’t exactly pack your swim gear for Ocean Beach in Tasmania, there’s a completely different kind of allure to it.
Imagine this: Tasmania’s longest beach – a 30km stretch of sand with the Southern Ocean flexing its might at the doorstep. Swimming? Nope. But, for raw, untamed power? Absolutely. You wouldn’t believe the waves out there, with the highest hitting 18 metres once!
You can access this beach by a short car trip from Strahan, or if you’re feeling adventurous, you can walk through the panoramic Henty Dunes.
How many beaches in Victoria are there? – and which are the best?
Victoria might be a bit more compact than some of the other states, but when it comes to beaches, it’s definitely punching above its weight. With 692 beaches dotting its landscape – from 560 surfable ocean-side spots to 132 more relaxed options hugging Port Philip Bay, and even more secret gems tucked away on its 184 islands.
The coastal journey begins at Cape Howe in the east and stretches all the way to the Glenelg River near Nelson in the west
📍Squeaky Beach, Wilsons Promontory
Located in the beautiful Wilsons Promontory National Park, Squeaky Beach is not your average sandy stretch. Its name is inspired by a playful quirk – the peculiar ‘squeak’ that you hear as you walk on its ultra-fine quartz sand.
While the beach is an attraction in itself, the nearby walking trails are a must-explore.
A popular choice is the moderate trek to Pillar Point, heading south from Squeaky Beach. This walk offers panoramic views of the offshore islands and the rugged headlands of the Prom. While it requires some effort, the stunning view at the end makes it worth every step.
Squeaky Beach isn’t just about the sand’s symphony or the scenic walks, though. Its large granite boulders are perfect for climbing, while the clear, shallow waters are a haven for paddling and wave jumping.
And if you’re lucky, you might even spot local kangaroos near the car park, giving you a truly Australian beach experience.
📍St Kilda Beach, Victoria
In the heart of one of Melbourne’s liveliest suburbs, St Kilda Beach is more than just a beach. This bustling hub offers a unique blend of city life and beach culture, enveloping you in its lively ambience.
Known for its soft golden sand and panoramic views of Port Phillip Bay, the beach is a beloved spot for watersports enthusiasts.
From wind and kite surfing to stand-up paddleboarding, there’s always something happening on the water.
A short, scenic walk leads you to the landmark St Kilda Pier, an ideal spot for fishing or simply soaking in a breathtaking sunset.
The excitement continues off the beach as well, with trendy cafes, eateries, and bars lining Acland and Fitzroy Streets nearby.
📍90 Mile Beach, Gippsland
One of the world’s longest uninterrupted beaches, Ninety Mile Beach in Victoria, is a remarkable spectacle that stretches an impressive 90 miles from Port Albert to Lakes Entrance.
This relatively untouched gem, with its soft golden sand and rhythmic waves, offers an unrivalled sense of tranquillity and vastness.
Whether you’re walking along the shoreline, collecting seashells, or simply basking in the vastness of the landscape, Ninety Mile Beach’s magnificence never fails to leave a lasting impression.
Nearby, the Gippsland Lakes are a haven for bird species and marine life, making it a delightful detour for wildlife enthusiasts.
And for those who enjoy fishing, this beach boasts some of the best surf fishing spots in Victoria.
How many beaches in Western Australia are there? – and which are the best?
Now let’s turn our gaze to the expanses of Western Australia, where the coastline isn’t just long, it’s practically endless.
Clocking in at more than 2050 recorded beaches, the sun-soaked shores of WA span from the border town of Eucla in the east, all the way up to the picturesque Roebuck Bay in the north.
📍Turquoise Bay, Cape Range National Park
Tucked away in the Cape Range National Park on the Coral Coast, Turquoise Bay is a real slice of paradise.
You know the kind where the corals kiss the shoreline, and the water is so clear, you can spot the vibrant tropical fish just a few steps from the beach? That’s Turquoise Bay for you.
The real treat here, though, is the unique experience of simply drifting with the current along the bay’s southern end, moving at the same leisurely pace as the aquatic locals in this part of the Ningaloo Marine Park.
Not surprisingly, Turquoise Bay topped TripAdvisor’s South Pacific’s Best Beaches list in 2022, a status it earned every bit of. You’ll get the hype once you dip your toes in its waters.
📍Lucky Bay, Esperance
Lucky Bay: just the name itself already sounds like a winner, doesn’t it?
And it’s not an empty boast – this beach has been crowned the world’s best by travel connoisseurs. Kangaroos lazing on the beach may seem like a postcard fantasy, but here it’s just another sunny day.
But don’t think these friendly marsupials are the sole stars of the show. Lucky Bay is a real-life utopia with its powder-white sands and ethereal turquoise waters.
Spread across 5 kilometres, there’s always an unspoiled spot waiting just for you. Kayaking, diving, or wandering the bush trails, whatever your beach day recipe is, Lucky Bay is set to exceed your expectations.
📍Hellfire Bay, Cape Le Grand National Park
Do you know that magical teal and turquoise blend you see in paint brochures? That’s exactly what the waters of Hellfire Bay look like.
Located between two rocky headlands in the Cape Le Grand National Park, this picturesque arc of sand is as eye-catching as its fiery name.
Despite its fame and frequent feature on ‘best beaches’ lists, Hellfire Bay still offers moments of blissful solitude. It’s not just the beach-goers it attracts; cyclists too find joy in pedalling along the 1.9-kilometre-long Hellfire Bay Trail that follows the mesmerizing coastline.
This spot east of Esperance is a true testament to nature’s colour palette.
How many beaches in northern territory are there? – and which are the best?
The Northern Territory boasts Australia’s third-largest coastline, with a staggering length of 10,953 kilometres. This includes a remarkable count of 887 islands and houses an impressive 5029 recorded beaches
📍Mindil Beach, Darwin
Heading to Australia’s top end, the Northern Territory might not be your typical beach destination, but wait till you experience the unique charm it holds.
Let’s escape to Mindil Beach, right near the centre of Darwin. This beach isn’t just about balmy waters and beautiful sunsets, although those are definitely worth mentioning. It’s also about the vibrant culture that surrounds it.
Known for its iconic Mindil Beach Sunset Market, you can spend your day swimming and sunbathing, and your evening exploring a bustling maze of stalls offering international cuisines, handmade crafts, and live entertainment.
Another remarkable feature of Mindil Beach is the spectacular display of colours that paint the sky as the sun dips into the Arafura Sea – a sunset that truly is a feast for the eyes. Look out for local wildlife too, from birds to the occasional harmless wallaby, but remember, like most Northern Territory beaches, this isn’t a spot for swimming due to marine stingers and crocodiles.
Most Famous Beaches in Australia
Bondi Beach, NSW
No Australian beach round-up would be complete without the iconic Bondi Beach. Located just a short drive from the heart of Sydney, Bondi is more than just a beach; it’s a lifestyle.
Its unique charm lies in its golden sands, vibrant community, and the iconic Bondi Icebergs Pool at the southern end.
There’s never a dull moment here – from catching waves, strolling the bustling Bondi Markets, exploring the scenic Bondi to Coogee coastal walk, to witnessing humpback whales during their annual migration.
Whitehaven Beach is celebrated worldwide for its seven kilometres of pure white silica sand and mesmerising turquoise waters.
The beauty of the swirling sands, best viewed from the Hill Inlet lookout or a scenic helicopter ride, makes it a photographer’s dream and a bucket list must.
And it’s not all about sunbathing here – go for a dip, sail around, or snorkel with the local turtles and tropical fish. As one of the world’s most beautiful beaches, Whitehaven Beach is the Aussie beach experience you won’t want to miss.
Whitehaven Beach, QLD
Cable Beach, WA
Cable Beach in Broome, Western Australia, is where the rugged charm of the red outback meets the serene blue waters of the Indian Ocean. With a whopping 22 kilometres of sun-kissed white sand, it’s the perfect spot to kick back, soak up the sun, or go for a refreshing dip.
But what makes Cable Beach a must-visit is its unforgettable sunset camel rides, a truly unique way to experience the picturesque views of this beach. Fancy a glimpse into the past? Visit the nearby Pearl Luggers Museum, which tells the intriguing tale of Broome’s rich pearling history.
And keep an eye out – you might just spot dinosaur footprints on a hovercraft tour at low tide!
What sets Noosa Main Beach apart is its seamless blend of natural beauty and urban sophistication.
The beach is right next to the bustling Hastings Street, a haven for foodies and shoppers. Once you’ve had your fill of the sun, sand, and surf, you can indulge in some retail therapy or relax at some of Noosa’s finest accommodations.
Plus, the Noosa National Park is just a stone’s throw away, offering picturesque coastal trails and a chance to spot koalas in the wild.
Noosa Main Beach, QLD
Bells Beach, VIC
Last but certainly not least on our list is Bells Beach, a true Aussie icon located along Victoria’s Great Ocean Road.
Famed for its powerful swells, Bells Beach is a surfer’s paradise and home to the longest-running surf competition in the world, the Rip Curl Pro.
Getting to Bells Beach is an adventure in itself. The drive along the Great Ocean Road is an epic road trip, with stunning coastal views and charming seaside towns along the way.
How Many Beaches in Australia: FAQs
Can you swim on all the beaches in Australia?
No, you cannot swim on all of Australia’s beaches. Some pose risks due to sharks, jellyfish, rips, crocodiles amongst other dangers. Always check local advisories, and when available, swim between the red and yellow flags indicating lifeguard-patrolled areas.
Does Australia have more than 10000 beaches?
Yes, Australia is often said to have over 10,000 beaches. In fact, if you were to visit a new beach every day in Australia, it would take you over 27 years to see them all!
Which city has the most beaches in Australia?
Sydney, in New South Wales, boasts the highest number of beaches within its metropolitan area compared to other Australian cities. With its extensive coastline along the Pacific Ocean, Sydney is home to famous beaches like Bondi and Manly, as well as numerous lesser-known sandy spots around the harbour and along the coast.
What is the cleanest beach in Australia?
The title of the “cleanest beach” can vary from year to year based on environmental assessments, local conservation efforts, and other factors. Australia has an awards program called “Keep Australia Beautiful” which annually awards beaches for cleanliness, environmental management, and community involvement. Beaches such as Currumbin Beach in Queensland and Tidal River in Victoria have previously been recognized for their cleanliness. However, it’s worth checking the latest results from the “Keep Australia Beautiful” awards or local environmental agencies to determine the current titleholder.
What is the most photographed beach in Australia?
Bondi Beach in Sydney is arguably the most photographed beach in Australia, with its iconic crescent shape, golden sands, and city backdrop. However, Whitehaven Beach on Whitsunday Island is another strong contender, known globally for its pristine white silica sand and crystal-clear waters, making it a favorite backdrop for many photographers and travel publications. Both beaches are iconic in their own right and represent the diverse beauty of Australia’s coastline.
What beach in Australia glows?
ervis Bay in New South Wales is famed for its white sands and clear waters. However, on certain nights, its beaches, particularly around Vincentia and Huskisson, can glow. This mesmerizing effect is due to bioluminescent plankton, which emits a blueish light when disturbed. The resulting glowing waves and footprints create a surreal experience, though it’s not a nightly guarantee.
Before you go…
Don’t let the adventure end here! Australia brims with stunning beaches (10,685 actually!) and unique experiences.
Wondering what else Australia has to offer? Our What is Australia Famous For? post dives into the iconic landmarks, unique wildlife, and cultural delights that make Australia such a distinctive destination.
And if our beach tour has left you dreaming about making Australia your home, you’ll want to read the best Reasons to Move to Australia.
From the laid-back lifestyle to the stunning landscapes and yes, the spectacular beaches, there’s a lot to love about life Down Under.