Beaches with sand, beaches suspended on cliffs, beaches in bustling cities… these are all pretty commonplace commodities. But what about reversible beaches, shape-shifting beaches or beaches made of glass? Today we’re going to show you five fantastically bizarre beaches.
1. Glass Beach, Fort Bragg, California
Glass Beach, if you can’t tell by the name, is composed of the most colorful shoreline; it’s literally littered with millions of tiny, smooth shards of glass. The bizarre and beautiful shoreline happened as a result of years of garbage-dumping into the ocean slightly north of Fort Bragg. Of course, the dumping has since been stopped, and the motion of the ocean has worn down the leftover glass into the smooth pebbles. Don’t worry, you can go barefoot! The Glass Festival is held annually at Glass beach on Memorial Day weekend.
2. Papakolea Green Sand Beach, Kau, Hawaii
Once again, you can figure out this beach’s quirk by its name. Papakolea is one of two green-sand beaches in the world (the other is in the Galapagos). The greenness is a result of ancient lava flows in the area and constant erosion. The water on the rock extracts olivine crystals, giving the beach its unique coloring. Eventually, the mineral supply will run out, and the beach will be regular old brown, so be sure to hit it up in the next hundred years.
3. Bowling Ball Beach, Point Arena, California
We’ve got another beach named for its strange features. Bowling Ball Beach boasts prehistoric boulders washed down over millions of years into smooth spheres. These bizarre formations are called concretions, and they’re composed of mudstone from the Cenozoic period. Cliffs of the same substance still line the beach.
4. Anjuna Beach, Goa, India
In the United States, we have Assateague Island off the coast of Maryland, where horses roam the sands. India has something a little more fascinating, if strange. Anjuna Beach, also called Cow Beach, is home to a hundred-something cows, who roam the beach as freely and leisurely as the tourists.
5. Zlatni Rat, Brac, Croatia
All beaches shape-shift slightly with the tides, but Zlatni Rat gets pretty weird. The usual shape of Zlatni Rat (translated to “Golden Horn”) is very narrow and long, extending into the blue sea at around 2,080 feet. The beach is composed of small white pebbles instead of sand, which are easily displaced by changes in tides, currents and winds.