Bikinis. Mojitos. Cool tunes.
If you are looking for fun, sun and sand, the Mediterranean is for you. This region has more top-notch party beaches than any other place in the world.
It’s not just a matter of quantity, either. One can convincingly argue that the very best party beaches in the WORLD are here.
What about Koh Phangan, you might ask, and its full-moon party?
What about South Beach? Or Rio’s famed Copacabana?
While it´s true that these other beaches boast warm weather year-round, they just don´t measure up to those in the Mediterranean. Yes, South Beach sometimes attracts a glamorous crowd, but it also suffers from a surfeit of posers, rappers and silicone drama queens. Koh Phangan´s full moon party sounds awesome until you learn that it consists of 30,000 drunk backpackers who, when they are not wading out into the sea to urinate, spend the night sipping cheap liquor from multi-colored plastic buckets. No, thank you.
Brazil is an improvement, but instead of Copacabana you´d be better off going to Ipanema or Leblon or — better yet — spending January near the beaches of Florianopolis. Copacabana is fine if you want to run into prostitutes or have your wallet stolen. Oh – did we mention that the surf off the coast of Rio is too rough for swimming?
Make no mistake, if you want great music, white sand, crystalline water, a cosmopolitan mix of attractive fellow partiers who know how to dance, have a little bit of pocket money, and whose idea of fun encompasses more than chugging Miller Lite until they pass out – head to the Mediterranean.
Here are the 6 best beach party destinations to try when you get there.
1. Ibiza and Formentera
If you count these two as one destination, no other place comes close. And smart visitors do count them as one destination. Located only 30 minutes apart by ferry, Ibiza is the glamorous, 24-hour thumping big brother to the smaller, gorgeous, more tranquil Formentera. Party all day and all night in Ibiza, then take the ferry over to Formentera and head to Playa de Ses Illetes for a nap. The water here is clearer than any you have ever seen. If you decide to rally and are up for an afternoon cocktail at a lounge bar with a great DJ, Bigsurlife will do the trick. Back on Ibiza, the beach to hit is Playa d’en Bossa. Famed for attracting European soccer stars and other celebrities, the common denominator here seems to be a hard body and beautiful face (and thick wallet). The Ushuaia Club is the posh venue for those who want to see and be seen. When Leo DeCaprio wasn’t on a luxury yacht and anchored off the coast of Ibiza or Formentera during his visit in summer 2014, he spent time at Ushuaia. Enough said.
Another classic that is not unlike what you’ll find at Ibiza, albeit on a smaller scale. Mykonos attracts a hip, affluent, multinational crowd. Movie stars and other celebrities have discovered that the Greek islands are as beautiful and glamorous as advertised, and the party will literally go on all night here. Expect to pay a lot at swank hangouts like Psarou Beach, where you can eat lunch at Nammos and lounge in a day bed while sipping on a bottle of Moet. The drinking and partying continues at famous Super Paradise Beach, where designer sunglasses, hard bikini bodies and thumping beats are the rule. When you need to detox, rent a scooter and escape to a quieter part of the island or simply meander among the upscale boutiques scattered among the whitewashed buildings in Mykonos City.
3. Tel Aviv
A lot of people don’t know about this one, probably because Israel is a bit off the beaten path. It is not what comes to mind when one thinks of a party destination. This is a grave oversight, because Tel Aviv will rock your world. The center of the action is Gordon Beach, a stretch of sand that is jam-packed with sexy twenty and thirty-somethings who like to party. During the day, La-la Land is a place to get started with chill-out music and comfy seating. Later, the popular mega-club Clara boasts a large dance floor where you can shake out to your favorite electronica before escaping to the perimeter for a bottle of Grey Goose. Like Barcelona on this list, Tel Aviv is much more than just a party on the beach, of course. This destination is for those who want to soak up some rays and then have a large, stylish city at their disposal. In Tel Aviv, the party goes all night long.
4. Pag, Croatia
Croatia is emerging as the trendy new place to visit in the Mediterranean, no doubt because prices at other destinations have exceeded all rational limits. Simply put, your dollars and euros will go farther here. Zrce Beach is the closest you will get to an Ibiza-style atmosphere in Croatia, without the sticker shock. Another difference is that a lot of people visit Ibiza just to be seen; at Zrce, they just want to party. The masses congregate at Papaya and Aquarius, two large outdoor clubs that are packed during the day with inebriated young tourists in search of decadent fun. This is hard, loud, house music on a grand scale. Imagine hordes of horny tourists dancing while they spray each other with water and raise their arms to the beat. Ahhh, to be young.
5. Skiathos, Greece
Dubbed the “new Mykonos” by youthful Greeks in the know, Skiathos is emerging as a rival destination for those seeking a cosmopolitan island experience without the exorbitant prices of its more famous neighbor to the south. This island has it all: cobblestone streets, trendy coffee houses, nice beaches, amazing sunsets, and thousands of young people in search of a good time. To this last point, Skiathos is a great place to party! Banana Beach is ground zero. Although not a large area, here you will find crystal clear sea, fine sand, water sports, and lots of scantily clad bodies. The crowd is predominantly Greek, which is what you should expect from a place that hasn’t yet been discovered by the rest of the world. Get here before it’s too late!
At Wegozo, we have a soft spot in our hearts for Barcelona. Who doesn’t? After all, Barcelona is the one of the most touristed cities in the world. There are many reasons for this esteemed position, and one of them is surely the beach. There is always a party going on down here. From May to October, the place is jammed. During the day, crowds canvas the beach from Hotel W in Barceloneta all the way to Marbella Beach, more than three miles away. Several small beach bars called chiringuitos offer simple food, cocktails and music. This is a good way to get your buzz started. Another afternoon option is to pass the time on comfortable cushions while eating or drinking at the fashionable seafront terraces of Mamarosa, Opium Mar, or CDLC. After dark, these clubs turn into party central until 6 am. At that time of the morning, and with the benefit of several drinks, many partygoers are already stripping off their clothes and running out into the sea.
What do you think? Have you been to any of these destinations? What else should we add to the list?