A beach bucket list…but not as you know it
We’re spoilt in Australia when it comes to beaches.
And when someone says “let’s hit the beach” you probably think of white sand, rolling waves, bright sunlight and…well, maybe a surfboard.
But as usual at Hammamas we like to share something a little different from the norm. As part of our promise, we’ve been in search of the world’s most interesting beaches and have been discovering that they come in far more different shapes… and colours, than you might first think.
Here’s our wrap up of some unique beach experiences for you to savour before the summer sun sets here in Aus.
See the best wildlife
You don’t need to stay at home in Victoria to see Penguins. Nor do you need to brave the frozen Antarctica to see them in their natural habitat. Near Cape Town in South Africa, over 2,000 endangered African penguins call Boulders Beach home. The boulders create a safe haven from the wind, making for a calm sandy shore. As you can imagine this is a marine protected area so there’s a small fee to enter.
If a dolphin-watching adventure is more up your alley then the world is your oyster (excuse the pun!) Dolphins can be spotted just about anywhere with a coastline. So how about seeing them in the UK?! Head to Cardigan Bay in Cornwall or Scotland’s Moray Firth for your best chances.
Turtles? Easy. At “Turtle Beach”, otherwise known as Laniakea Beach, in Oahu, you’ll get to see them while snorkeling and on the beach itself.
Yes, yes. The Great Barrier Reef. We know and love it. But, we’ve discovered the largest barrier reef outside of Australia. At 185 miles, Ambergris Caye, Belize has tons of opportunities to get up close and personal with eels, rays, and all sorts of brightly colored fish. The Hol Chan Marine Reserve and the shark-ray alley should be on your bucket list
If you’re planning on making the most of the Australian Autumn sunshine then head to Byron Bay, New South Wales to spot some humpback whales.
Catch the best breaks
Easy Peasey. It’s got to be Bells Beach, in Victoria. It’s the spiritual home of Australian surfing. It also has the creds to back this up. It’s been hosting the country’s oldest and most prestigious event in the surfing world since 1962: Rip Curl Pro. Now a bit of an icon, the powerful swells offer outstanding surf rising up to, and over, five metres against the red clay cliffs.
Colourful sand for your Instagram
Want to surprise your friends with something that will make them do a double take on your feed? You got it! Pink, green, red or black sand beaches might make them think you’ve gone a bit crazy with the filters. Legitimately these these places exist and we’ll tell you why.
Papakōlea Green Sand Beach in Hawaii gets its colour from the mineral olivine, which is formed by lava as it cools in the sea. Want the real thing perhaps? Then head to Grass Beach in French Guiana. There’s a sea shore consisting of grassland in Kourou. Perfect for a lazy sunset stroll and a picnic.
Further along the colour spectrum, the surreal aura of the Pink Sand Beach in the Bahamas is created by washed-up coral remnants, which are ground into tiny pieces by the surf. Then there’s the Red Sand Beach, at Rabida, in the Galapagos was formed due to the oxidization of iron-rich lava deposits. Or head to Pfeiffer Purple Sand Beach in California after it’s rained. The purple sand at this beach is formed when manganese garnet deposits in the surrounding hills erode into the sea and the rain makes the purple colour of the sand even more mesmerizing.
And finally, there’s black sand to see at Vik Beach. Iceland is a land with a lot of volcanic activity, which makes black volcanic beaches common there.
Fake it at an urban beach
Cities don’t come more beach-centric than Rio de Janeiro. With the backdrop of a high-rise skyline the iconic Copacabana and upmarket Ipanema are great places to enjoy a game of footvolley (Google it) or soak in the view over a caipirinha.
If luxury is what you seek then head for the world’s largest artificial, man-made island in Dubai – the Palm Jumeirah. Like it’s name suggests – it’s the shape of a palm tree. Each of the fronds of the Palm Island has its own beach and just a few (well over 1,700) villas to choose from.
No longer seedy, South Beach in Miami is now a popular stomping ground with its palm-studded street. Hire a bike, enjoy rooftop yoga at your hotel or enjoy a swim.
Invisible from outside, this beach is hidden in front of Puerto Vallarta where the Pacific ocean meets the coast of Mexico.
‘Hidden beach’ on the Marieta Islands in Puerto Vallarta is said to be the result of the Mexican government using the uninhabited islands for bombing target practice during World War I.
The beach is completely engulfed by a cave with a massive hole in the roof to let in sunlight. It has long water tunnels which you have to swim through to get to the beach.
It’s also known as “Playa del Amor” in spanish, or “Love Beach”. This is perhaps the world’s most romantic bomb site and probably not too late to surprise your ‘someone special’ for Valentine’s Day!
With love and romantic vibes from the Hammamas team x
Best festivals? You got it!
Our love of festivals isn’t confined to summer, but these warmer months do make things a little more lush. And now that Christmas is over, we’re all looking to fill our diaries with fun for the rest of the summer.
If like us, you’re looking for something fresh, different or boutique then read on to find our our faves, and hear where our nearest and dearest are going to be soaking up some of the world’s best music and entertainment this festival season.
The newbie – Let Go Fest
When: 2nd February
Where: Mornington, Victoria
Why we love it: We love supporting people who are trying new things. This festival is one lovely day of great dance music, food, and entertainment. It’s also got added extras for free including a silent disco, Ferris wheel and amusement rides. The line-up this year is looking amazing too with favourites including Sticky Fingers, Thundamentals and the inspirational Maribelle.
What we’d pack: Fedora, denim shorts, sunnies and thongs
2018 saw the return of hats. A wide brim fedora is one of our personal favourites and looks good with…well…anything! A maxi dress and leather jacket for the cooler evenings or your treasured old denim cut downs. Yes yes, It’s probably the most commonly worn piece at festivals, but it’s popular because as we all know, it just works. Add some sunnies for style and comfort in the sun plus your best thongs and ‘ta da!’
Two final things will make your trip complete: a netted bag for all your swag and of course, your trusty Hammamas turkish cotton towel. We suggest the Essence Lite and have a MASSIVE crush on the emerald colour right now. As the name suggests it’s a lighter version of our popular diamond weave Essence home range.
Like it? Find out more https://www.facebook.com/letgofest/
The all-rounder – Rainbow Serpent
When: 25th – 28th January
Where: Lexton, Victoria
Why we love it: We’re told that this is one of Australia’s most popular, and independent, festivals. Even though it has a line up from over 100+ artists; it’s really no longer just a music festival anymore. Rainbow Serpent has a whole village, solar powered cinema, bazaar, temples, performances, spiritual discussions, relaxation and healing! You get the idea.
Taking its name from an important aboriginal creation figure, Rainbow Serpent festival has a mission for sustainability; so you can truly celebrate nature, community and harmony.
It’s really well set up for kids too with a family-friendly camping area set up away from the night noise (the music goes 24/7).
What we’d pack: Something in marigold
Lemon yellow took the poll position last year so we’re already prepped to stand out with a burst of marigold or a deep mango yellow. This bold colour is the perfect statement piece amongst the Rainbow Serpent vibe. And what could be the more perfect accompaniment than the Hammamas Original in Sunshine! Everyone should own one of these pure cotton beach towels. Our original range are lightly striped; and can transform from a sarong or dress to a blanket or shawl for the evening.
Like it? Find out more https://www.rainbowserpent.net/
Going on tour – Electric Gardens Festival
Where & when: 26th January, Sydney; 18th January, Melbourne; 19th January Perth; 27th January, Adelaide
Why we love it: the love story
Go back 20 years into 90s London. This is where Electric Gardens’ founders Damian Gelle and Anton Marmot met. Then in 2004 they launched what is now a world-famous festival: South West Four. Set on the city’s Clapham Common, it attracted the biggest DJs in the world year after year. Now back home, they’re working their musical magic in cities across Australia. Nawwww, thanks guys 💕
What we’d pack: A gypsy dress
Sway away to the electronic beats of Underworld, Erick Morillo, Eats Everything and Fatboy Slim in a gypsy maxi dress. You’ll be super comfortable all day and night. Pair it with some funky boots and a hat. Bring along your Hammamas Hip in charcoal/dove. Our square Turkish towel gives you and all your friends the room to stretch out and relax.
Like it? Find out more https://www.facebook.com/electricgardensfestival
Island hop – Mona Foma Festival
When: 13th – 20th January
Where: Hobart, Tasmania
Why we love it: It’s won the Best Contemporary Music Festival in Australia THREE TIMES!
This year, the show goes on the road as it’s moved from its usual spot in Hobart to Launceston. It’s one of Tasmania’s biggest shindigs with tonnes of different events spread over three days. And apparently this year’s festival is going to be it;s most diverse yet!
You should definitely take the kids to experience it too. They can go along to events at the festival hub for free if they are under 12.
Headliners this year include Neneh Cherry, Underworld (they’re working the circuit this year!), Oneohtrix Point Never.
What we’d pack: Everything! Go all in and mix up your prints and patterns
Like this year’s festival, anything goes. So pack your best and most varied prints and patterns…and wear them together. Something from our turkish cotton towel Groove range will help top off the look. These beach towels ooooze individuality. Each piece is handmade and no one piece is exactly the same.
Like it? Find out more Visit the very psychedelic website: mofo.net.au or check out Facebook
Take the whole gang – Byron Bay Bluesfest
When: Easter weekend 18th – 22nd April
Where: Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, just north of Byron Bay.
Why we love it: Blues and Roots? This is where it is at. Everyone, of every age, will be entertained and catered for. Big names, 200 performances, and 100 food and market stalls, it’s the epitome of Byron Bay & its culture.
This five day event has a great reputation for being safe, family friendly and fun. We hope you’ve got a ticket already!
What we’d pack: Something in animal print
Leopard, snake skin, zebra….the animal print revival is real. Although honestly, we think it will last forever. We’re reliably told that the best way to wear them is all at the same time and clash them.
Choose one of five options from our new Fiesta range to bring out the little creature in you and bring a pop of colour too.
Like it? Find out more https://www.bluesfest.com.au/
Go Urban – St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival
Where & when: 9th February, Melbourne; 3rd February, Sydney; 2nd February, Brisbane; 8th February, Adelaide; 10th February, Fremantle
Why we love it:
Ahhh this little humble festival started tucked away, deep down in a little Melbourne laneway. And even though it’s now an international touring festival, it continues to support local talent and up and coming gems, involve the local community and provide some of the best music in really unique settings.
Of course, it now also attracts some of Australia’s finest contemporary acts and this year Courtney Barnett, Gang Of Youths, Methyl Ethel, Camp Cope, and Middle Kids will be part of the line up.
What we’d pack: The boho outfit
The go-to festival staple, a Boho outfit is most people’s favourite. Make it as unique as the festival by adding your own touches: a woven cotton shoulder bag to safely store your wallet, ID, phone and other stuff; anything that’s crochet, your flower crown and of course we can help with the final crucial item… your Hammamas turkish cotton Boho towel
Like it? Find out more https://lanewayfestival.com/
Golden Oldie – You thought we’d forgotten didn’t you?! Well last but not least: Golden Plains Festival
When: 9th – 11th March
Where: Meredith Supernatural Amphitheatre, Victoria
Why we like it: Why don’t we like it?! Enter the wonderland that is Meredith. Now in it’s 13th year we’re pretty confident it’s not unlucky for this immense event. There’s only one stage so no traipsing from one to the other trying to find your best friend. It’s also probably the only festival where you can bring your own couch and there is no (that’s zero, none, nadda) commercial sponsors.
What we’d pack: all our favourite Hammamas Turkish cotton towels
Golden Plains is meant to be a haven. Camp wherever you like, bring almost everything and anything if you want. So the perfect accompaniment is blankets, rugs to make your space homely; and definitely at least one item from our Luxe range as it gets really cold at night time.
Like it? Find out more: http://2019.goldenplains.com.au/
We hope you love our Bestivals run down! We’d love to see your summer adventures on Instagram @hammamas.aus
With love and summer vibes from the Hammamas team x