Cape Town - South Africa is renowned for its famous Cape Town beaches such as Camps Bay and Clifton - but according to a global Beach Price Index, featuring more than 300 seaside locations from 70 countries around the globe – that's not where you should be heading to - at least not in winter anyway.
Online travel specialists TravelBird's index, which takes into account factors such as currency fluctuation and inflation, has found South Africa's Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal beaches to be quite pocket-friendly. And we have to mention - quite delightful during the winter months too.
Port Elizabeth's Hobie Beach and Port St John in the Eastern Cape, along with Balito in KwaDukuza and Uvongo Beach along the Hibiscus Coast all made the cut locally - with Uvongo being the cheapest to spend a day at around $31.93 or (R415 at R13.03/$).
To calculate their affordability, the price of five essentials were then researched for each destination: the cost of a bottle of sun cream (200 ml), a bottle of water (500 ml), a beer (33 cl bottle), lunch (including drink and dessert for one person), and an ice cream. All prices were calculated by standardising the sizes of products, and with monetary transactions true to exchange rates on 1 June 2017.
For one we agree with the index in checking out more of South Africa's lesser-known beaches when given the opportunity. SEE: 7 Best Secret Beaches of SA
But if you're after a more exotic, albeit exotic beach escapes, steer clear of the likes of Norway which could set you back about R832 for the day based on the index, which lists the country as the most expensive for a beach escape.
West Palm Beach in Florida has the world’s most expensive seaside lunch, while the least expensive lunch can be bought on a beach in Egypt.
Norway’s Huk Beach sells the world’s most expensive ice creams, beer and bottle of water, while various beaches in Egypt have the least expensive of the same items.
You should however head to the likes of Vietnam though, where a day at the beach is even cheaper than at home on Hobie Beach in the Eastern Cape, with costs estimated at R171 for the day. Doesn't hurt that it's one of the most affordable destinations for South Africans, with a visa on arrival for holders of a green mamba passport.
"It is very interesting for travellers who are planning their trip to see how much the price of spending a day at the beach varies across the world. There are many useful tips in here. Currency fluctuations can make a big difference in the actual cost of your holiday, so keep those in mind. For example, beaches in the UK have become almost 10% more affordable for continental European visitors due to the decline of the pound after the Brexit referendum,” says TravelBird CEO Steven Klooster.
“Also, if you are keen on enjoying local food on the beach, pick Vietnam for instance, where you can enjoy delicious local food on the beach that is very affordable,” Klooster says.
“In some places you pay a lot for sunscreen, up to three times more than you would pay in the Netherlands, so make sure you take some with you,” he adds.
Sun cream is most expensive when bought from beaches in The Seychelles, while Cua Dai Beach in Vietnam has the world’s least expensive sun cream.