Dramatic coastlines and tropical islands prove there's more to Africa than safaris and overtones of adventure.
From humble fishing hamlets to ultimate luxury retreats, the beaches in Asia are as diverse as the country itself.
Beautiful sandy shores and unspoiled islands trace the expansive coast of Australia, offering world-class beach holidays in your own backyard.
With the Mediterranean Sea taking pride of place, it's hard to resist an island-hopping holiday or beachside break in Europe.

Sunset backdrops, sandcastles and the sound of the surf

Whether you are seeking a romantic trip for two, a family break during school holidays or a fun-filled weekend with good friends, a holiday at the beach is one size fits all. People have an inherent connection to the beach, using it as a port of transport and trade, a source of leisure and a place of health and wellbeing. Sometimes you just need to slow down, take it easy and enjoy your surrounds and the beach is the perfect place to do just that.

Within the Indian Ocean are the Seychelles, Maldives and Mauritius which are world reknowned for their white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters. Spending time on a small island will do wonders for your stress levels. These spots are also some of the best dive sights in the region. Many resorts offer free snorkelling to guests so you can explore the underwater gardens.

Asian beaches draw people from all over the world. Thailand's beaches were immortalised in the movie "The Beach" and with good reason. Thailand still lures intrepid travellers with promises of finding remote untouched beaches on one of its many islands.

Langkawi in Malaysia is perfect for a little bit of luxury. Its neighbour Bali can offer the perfect holiday for both luxury and budget travellers.

Closer to home Sri Lanka's beach towns of Bentota and Negombo are a great way to enjoy a budget beach holiday without having to worry about a long haul flight.

Beach Holidays: WhitsundaysThe Whitsundays are the shining jewel in the crown of Australia's coastline

Australia is lucky enough to be home to some of the best islands and beaches in the world. Off the coast of sunny Queensland, the Whitsundays, Hamilton Island and Hayman Island are among the most popular island getaways with endless pristine beaches to get your dose of Vitamin D, secluded swimming spots and plentiful chances to spot marine life.

Long walks with sunset backdrops, monumental sandcastles and opportunities to get lost in a good book are yours with Flight Centre's island and beach holidays.