Horseback riding on the beach in Nicaragua. Photo © Boy Driessen/123rf.

Things to Do on Nicaragua’s Northwest Coast

Although a trip to the scenic crater that makes up the highest point of Reserva Natural Volcán Cosigüina is the center point of a trip to this area, you can also relax in the Padre Ramos Wetlands Reserve, take a horseback ride, explore, fish, or lounge on the beach.

Avenue of the Giants. Photo © Suppavut Varutbangkul/123rf.

Explore Humboldt Redwoods State Park

Surprisingly, the largest stand of unlogged redwood trees isn’t on the coast, and it isn’t in the Sierras; it’s here in Humboldt, bisected by U.S. 101. Come to this park to hike and camp beneath the 300-foot-plus old-growth trees of the Avenue of the Giants, and cool off with a swim or boat trip down the Eel River.

Picture-perfect beach in Piñones. Photo © Angel Xavier Viera-Vargas, licensed Creative Commons usage.

Fun in Bosque Estatal de Piñones, Puerto Rico

There’s no other place in Puerto Rico like the spectacular Bosque Estatal de Piñones. Stretching from the eastern tip of Isla Verde, San Juan, to the town of Loíza, this pristine reserve is a natural wonderland of deserted beaches; mangrove, pine, and palm forests; sand dunes; coral reefs; bays; salt flats; and lagoons.

A boulder at the Baths National Park. Photo © Todd VanSickle.

Experience Baths National Park, BVI

Virgin Gorda’s Baths National Park is one of the most famous sights in the British Virgin Islands. The Baths are a landscape of building-size boulders, clear saltwater grottoes, and powder-white beaches. There are endless pools for exploring, swimming, and snorkeling. The park is a playground, where even grown-ups are tempted to climb over and around, looking for a quiet pool or hidden room.

Kayaking in Providencia. Photo © Andrew Dier.

Providencia’s Parque Nacional Natural Old Providence McBean Lagoon

Providencia’s Parque Nacional Natural Old Providence McBean Lagoon holds a plethora of outdoor activities, from swimming and snorkeling at Crab Cay to kayaking through mangroves at Oyster’s Creek Lagoon, to guided boat tours and hiking. Here’s an overview of the area, activities, amenities, and how to get there.

Waves crash on the rocky, volcanic shorline of Wawaloli Beach.

Kona’s Beaches: South of the Airport

Kona’s beaches south of the airport are a motley crew. Worth a visit if you’re in the area looking for sand, you’ll find plenty of picnic areas and one or two spots to get in the water for snorkeling, swimming, or boarding. Here are directions, the best activities for each beach, and amenities.

Coronado Beach starts at historic Hotel del Coronado and runs north to a dog-friendly beach.

San Diego’s Best Beaches

A roundup of San Diego’s best beaches. Whether you have children to entertain or are on your own ready for sun, sand, & surf, there’s a beach here for you.

Shallow turquoise water of Hierve El Agua.

Hierve el Agua: Mexico’s Mineral Springs

Although the name of this place translates as boiling water, the springs that seep from the side of a limestone mountain less than an hour’s drive east of Mitla aren’t hot. Loaded with minerals, over time rock-hard deposits formed great algae-painted slabs in level spots and, on steep slopes, accumulated into what appear to be grand frozen waterfalls.

Snorkeling in clear shallow water in Bermuda's Blue Hole Park.

Bermuda’s Blue Hole Park and Walsingham Nature Reserve

In Hamilton Parish, this property incorporates coast and forested land from Blue Hole Park to Tom Moore’s Jungle (as Walsingham Nature Reserve is commonly called). Learn about Tom Moore’s local legend and his calabash tree, the honeycomb of forest caves, and the amazing swimming grottoes and underwater caves.