As whimsical as it might sound, do you dream of dancing with the stars? Well, dreams do come true. At certain places on the earth, with nightfall the magic happens – just like you saw in ‘Life of Pi’. There are beaches where you can witness glowing waves; they look like small tiny blue neon lights in water. The phenomenon is called bioluminescence, and is caused by light emitting microorganisms living in the sea.
Bioluminescence occurs in many places around the world. If you haven’t witnessed this awe-inspiring phenomena, yet, here is the list of 11 glowing beaches and bioluminescent bays in the world.
11 Glowing Beaches And Bioluminescent Bays In The World
- Puerto Mosquito, Vieques, Puerto Rico
- Manasquan Beach, NJ
- Springbrook Park, Australia
- San Juan Island, Washington, U.S.
- Halong Bay, Vietnam
- Big South Fork, TN/KY
- Torrey Pines Beach, San Diego, CA
- Ton Sai, Krabi, Thailand
- Toyama Bay, Japan
- Reethi Beach, Maldives
- Waitomo, New Zealand
1. Puerto Mosquito, Vieques, Puerto Rico
Have the most amazing experience at the brightest and best-known bioluminescent bay in the world. It’s like rowing on a tapestry of stars. It’s also called as the Bio Bay, and got its name after the bright plankton that illuminates the water body.
Tip: The kayak cruise is perfect to experience this up close.
2. Manasquan Beach, NJ
Located in New Jersey, Manasquan is a small yet charming coastal community. But it has all! You can enjoy surfing as well as rafting at its this spectacular bioluminescent beach. During nightfall, you can witness red tide which occurs due to the reddish algae in the sea.
Tip: Bioluminescence is best to witness during the summer months, mid-July to September.
3. Springbrook Park, Australia
Nothing like a flash of neon! Springbrook Park is also a great location to witness bioluminescence. When you go for a night hike through the National Park forest, the little glowworms illuminate. Torches are too mainstream, aren’t they?
Tip: You can experience it best during the rains, as the glowworms prefer moisture. The average rainfall is 3000 mm a year, mostly from December to March. If you prefer drier months then you can visit anytime between May and October.
4. San Juan Island, Washington, U.S.
Set off from the Jackson beach and follow the North Bay shoreline east to treat yourself to some brilliant stargazing. The best way to explore this gorgeous bioluminescent beach is to go kayaking. As you paddle across, you’ll witness electrifying silver and blueish glow.
Tip: You can opt for a guided tour with Discovery Sea Kayaking or maybe get your own Kayak!
5. Halong Bay, Vietnam
Known for its emerald water and stunning natural beauty, Halong Bay is among the most breathtaking bioluminescent bays. Also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Halong Bay has plenty to explore, ranging from the caves to the wilderness to the limestones islands. It is truly, a traveler’s dream come true.
Tip: Best time to witness bioluminescence at Halong Bay is late night, after the boats turn off their lights.
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6. Big South Fork, TN/KY
Don’t be surprised if you find yourself humming Owl City’s Fireflies at Big South Fork’s bioluminescence beach! That’s because the beautiful bioluminescence sights here will leave you speechless. If you plan an overnight stay here, be ready to be swamped with numerous fireflies adorning the dark skies. And the best part is the unique patterns and sequences they create to indicate gender, territory and mating. Fascinating, isn’t it?
Tip: Summer is the best time to hit the trail, which is between July and August.
7. Torrey Pines Beach, San Diego, CA
Torrey Pines State Beach is a coastal bioluminescent beach located in the San Diego, California. The waves here give a vivid blue glow as they crash ashore. And it is visible only after nightfall.
Tip: Pick a dark spot at nightfall to witness the spectacular neon light.
8. Ton Sai, Krabi, Thailand
If you ever go to Thailand, don’t miss out this extraordinary fete of nature at the bioluminescence beach at Ton Sai. The planktons that dwell in the deep water, light up and glitter! It’s super trippy. Try walking into them, and your footsteps will glow. It’s like witnessing fairy dust.
Tip: Ton Sai is perfect for the beach bums! Away from the humdrum, it is peaceful and really pretty. Though it isn’t easily accessible, most visitors arrive by boat. You can also hike, which takes about 1.5 hours.
9. Toyama Bay, Japan
A species called Firefly Squid emits light along the Toyama Bay, one of the gorgeous bioluminescent bays in the world. They are only 3 inches long and live at depth of 1,200 feet. Also, the Firefly Squids are considered as a delicacy in Japan. When a millions of squids come together to fertilize and to drop their eggs in the Toyama Bay, it causes one big light show!
Tip: The sightseeing boats depart from the Namerikawa fishing port at 3 in the morning. If you want to see this delightful glow, make sure you make your itinerary in a proper way. Also, Namerikawa is home to the world’s only museum dedicated to the firefly squid.
10. Reethi Beach, Maldives
Bioluminescent beaches are in the Indian Ocean too! In Maldives, Conrad Maldives Rangali Island offers night dives in which divers can swim through this glowing blue beam of light. It is incredibly beautiful and enchanting.
Tip: Bioluminescence is noticeable when the moon is not bright; no moon nights are the best time.
11. Waitomo, New Zealand
This one makes to our list purely because of its uniqueness. It may sound surprising, but bioluminescence doesn’t just exist in the sea. Don’t believe us? Head to the caves in Waitomo, and you’ll be awestruck. The walls of the cave are covered with tiny glowworms that lights up the cave. Dreamy, isn’t it?
Tip: The cave tour might be slightly expensive, but the experience will leave you enthralled. Explore various packages to get the best deal.
Loved what you read? Imagine the excitement and thrill when you are actually experiencing this bizarre yet beautiful work of nature. Who said you need to be up above the clouds to dance with the stars? Just head to any of these bioluminescent beaches and bays have an experience of a lifetime.
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