by Allen J. Sheinman | June 30, 2010

The list 

The folks who produce the travel guides at Lonely Planet say the following 10 destinations take top honors for sun, surf and relaxation.

Dahab, Egypt: golden sands, budget accommodations right by the water and world-class diving nearby.
Curonian Spit, Lithuania: a bewitching mix of sand dunes and pine forests.
Jambiani, Tanzania: a "beach that time forgot," with nothing to do "except loll about and crack open a few coconuts."
Kerala Coast, India: the "bluest of blue waters," spectacular sunsets.
Pulau Perhentian, Malaysia: palm-fringed beaches, covered in tropical rainforest, "virtually no sign of commercialization."
Kai Islands, Indonesia: some of the world's best, most pristine white-sand beaches; "wondrous" coral reefs.
Isla Mujeres, Mexico: off-shore from Cancun, with heavenly tropical beaches and calm turquoise waters.
North Stradbroke Island, Australia: secluded nooks, whale watching, dunes and "some unique Aussie animals."
Ko Pha-Ngan, Thailand: surrounded by coconut trees and mountains, the twin beaches of Thong Nai Pan are a favorite of Thai royalty.
Punalu'u, Hawaii: sparkling blue waters, a jet-black beach and the lovable but endangered hawksbill turtle.

Source: Lonely Planet's 1,000 Ultimate Experiences;

More Lists »