8 idyllic places like Hawaii where you can work on that tan
Or just bum on the beach. We don't judge.
Tropical island getaway on your mind? While you toss over Hawaii, here are a couple of alternate destinations that offer travellers all the beauty that is synonymous with the US state, from the pristine beaches, technicolor coral reefs and geological wonders, well worth visiting. Some may even get you there and back for the fraction of the price of that Hawaii trip.
So whether you are looking for an underwater encounter with marine life or want to chill by the beach while enjoying perfect sunsets, these travel deals and discount codes will get you there ASAP.
Image source: Tourism Whitsundays
For somewhere super close to home but housing more stunning beaches than you can shake a stick at, there's the Whitsundays. Its located in the heart of the Great Barrier Reef and comes surrounded by emerald green forests. Hawaiian holiday? Pffft. Choose the Whitsundays instead.
- Top 5 beaches: Whitehaven Beach, Daydream Island, Turtle Bay, Catseye Beach, Airlie Beach Lagoon
- Must do/see: The Great Barrier Reef, Aboriginal rock paintings, scenic drives, rainforest walks
- Stay: at the Daydream Island Resort and Spa. Located within minutes of Daydream reef and featuring its own private beachfront, this resort is just what the doctor ordered to help you destress, relax and rewind. Prices start from $230 per night.
Search flights to the Whitsundays
It’s no secret that Australians have a love affair with Indonesia. What’s not to love? With its enviable beaches and its relaxed vibe you wouldn't have to stretch your imagination too far to think you're lying on a Hawaiian beach with a cocktail in hand.
- Top 5 beaches: Nihiwatu, Canggu, Derawan, Peucang, Dreamland
- Must do/see: Temples, mosques and national parks
- Stay: At the Padma Resort Legian. 5-star luxury for a fraction of the price? Yes, please. Prices start at $401 per room per night here.
Browse flights to Indonesia (Bali)
Private villas in Bali from $33 per night
Book a private villa in Ubud, Seminyak, Kuta, Legian, Canggu and more from just $33 per night with Roomorama.
America’s Sunshine State is known for its beaches, theme parks and parties on the upscale South Beach, but don’t miss out on its rich arts and culture or dining scene while in a resort.
- Top 5 beaches: Palm Beach, South Beach, Clearwater, Miami Beach, Siesta Key
- Must do/see: Amusement parks, night life, Everglades National Park, art museums
- Stay at: The Riviere South Beach Hotel. Located in Miami's trendy Art-Deco district, The Riviere is just a short stroll from the beach. Rooms start at $420 per night.
Search flights to Florida
Miami dining, attractions and tours from $38
See South Beach's art deco architecture, cruise Biscayne Bay and explore the Florida Keys with attractions and tours in Miami from just $38 per person.
Sitting roughly half-way between Hawaii and New Zealand, Samoa boasts lush mountains, waterfalls you can swim under and is impossibly blue waters.
- Top 5 beaches: Aganoa Beach, Lalomanu, Manase, Tanu, Aggie Grey's
- Must do/see: Afu Aau Waterfall, To Sua Ocean Trench, Samoa Cultural Village, diving and snorkelling
- Stay at: Coconuts Beach Club. Offering the ultimate South Pacific island experience of over-water bungalows, this resort also has a restaurant, spa and a fun, gecko-shaped swimming pool. It also hosts a Samoan culture day every Saturday that's free for guests. Over-water bungalows start at US$599 per night including breakfast or minibar, kayaks and snorkel gear, bus to the city.
Search flights to Samoa
Famed as the birthplace of reggae, Jamaica is a Caribbean jewel that draws in tourists with its lush rainforests and reef-lined beaches.
- Top 5 beaches: Seven Mile Beach, Boston Bay Beach, Doctor’s Cave Beach, Reggae Beach and Cornwall Beach
- Must do/see: Nightlife, beaches, Bob Marley Museum, Negril, Caribbean food
- Stay at: Whispering Seas Enjoy self contained luxury apartments with a beach and stunning views of the Caribbean Sea that's close to Dunns River Falls with apartments starting at $450 per night.
Search flights to Jamaica
6. Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic is rich in history and natural beauty. This lush tropical paradise offers magnificent rainforests, savannahs and some of the world’s best beaches.
- Top 5 beaches: Playa Dorada, Playa Boca Chica, Playa Punta Cana, Playa Juanillo and Playa Dorada
- Must do/see: Watersports, Pico Duarte, Santiago, smoke a cigar, Colonial City and golfing
- Stay at: Renaissance Jaragua Hotel & Casino. Located on Santo Domingo waterfront boulevard, this luxury hotel has lavish amenities and world-class service. Rooms start at $276 per night.
Search flights to Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic tours and attractions from $47
Tours and attractions, including Ocean World Puerto Plata, sailing cruises, rum factories and wildlife parks form $47 per person.
Stunning coral reefs and warm waters may make Barbados a divers’ paradise but this tropical island also tempts travellers with its art museums, dining scene and friendly people.
- Top 5 beaches: Crane Beach, Silver Sands, Bathsheba, Dover, Bath Beach
- Must do/see: Beaches, Bridgetown, nightlife, Flower Forest, snorkelling and scuba diving
- Stay at: Bougainvillea Beach Resort: Sitting right on the beach, this 4-star resort has private terraces and features a golf course. It's an easy walk to Oistins Bay and St Lawrence Gap. Rooms start at $220 per night.
Search flights to Barbados
8. St Martin
Whether you’re into watersports or relaxing on the beach, you’ll be spoiled for choice by St Martin’s 37 beaches.
- Top 5 beaches: Red Bay, Nettle Bay, Friars’ Bay Beach, Pinel island, Orient Bay
- Must do/see: Visit the French town of Marigot, Forts at Philipsburg and laze on beaches galore
- Stay at: Green Cay Villas. This luxury villa is perfect for big groups or families looking for privacy and exclusive services. It might not be cheap, but it is beautiful. Villas start at $711 per night.
Search flights to St Martin
Ready to fly? Book using these travel coupons and deals:
Up to 50% off Bali tours and activities
Sample discounts include 50% off white water rafting, 35% off Nusa Dua Theater, 25% off a snorkelling tour to Nusa Lembongan.
4-night Hamilton Island stays with breakfast from $1480
Valid on stays within 72 hours of booking. Sample stays include Garden View Rooms for $135 per person, per night including return transfers from Airlie Beach, use of equipment at the hotel, Wi-Fi access and island shuttle service.