Adventure Beaches

8 Unknown Black Sandy Beaches in Africa

black sand beaches in Africa
Avatar of Teresa Mwangi
Written by Teresa Mwangi

Did you ever imagine even in your wildest dreams that there exists black sand beaches in Africa?

While it is an uncommon phenomenon in Africa, black sandy beaches stem from past geological factors. The continent has/had active volcanoes which eventually turned into black sand. Subsequent disintegration and weathering of volcanic minerals, such as iron- and magnesium-rich basalt, give the black sand. Fine particles form as volcanic debris erodes over time, adding to the black sand’s distinctive appearance.

Along its extensive coastline, Africa has many nations with black sand beaches, each with a unique combination of natural beauty and cultural diversity. This article digs into depth about this phenomenon.

What Country is the Black Sand Beach in?

Black sand beaches in Africa are not uncommon as many people think. Madagascar, Mauritius, Eritrea, Ghana, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Seychelles and Tanzania have black sandy beaches. As stated above, these countries have experienced some extent of volcanic activity that produced the black sand on its shores. In view of this, the following are the beaches in Africa with black sand.

black sandy beach

A black sandy beach. Photo/Love Big Island

Nungwi Beach (Zanzibar, Tanzania)

Zanzibar archipelago, off Tanzania’s coast is home to Nungwi and Pongwe beaches which all have black sand. Visitors enjoy the attraction of ebony coastlines meeting the Indian Ocean’s turquoise waves.

Eastern Shores (Madagascar)

The Eastern shores of Madagascar near Soanierana Ivongo are among black sand beaches in Africa. This region constitutes the Island of Madagascar popular for its astounding biodiversity made up of black sand beaches.

La Roche Noire [Black Rock] Beach (Mauritius)

La Roche Noire beach (Black Rock beach) in Mauritius has Ebony-colored beaches adorn this picturesque shoreline. The rich flora and towering volcanic rocks frame this island that is serene and pure.

Cape Verde Island Beaches (Cape Verde)

The Cape Verde islands, off Africa’s northwest coast, have a rich volcanic history. Santo Antão and Santiago Islands have black sand beaches, where visitors enjoy themselves the natural beauty of these geological wonders.

Western Ghana Beaches

In addition to having a rich history, Ghana’s coastline also has black sand beaches, which contribute to its attraction. These diverse shorelines are in the Western Region and invite travellers to explore the meeting point of natural beauty and cultural legacy.

Limbe Beach (Cameroon)

Cameroon has a special place as far as black sand beaches in Africa go. Limbe town in particular, along Cameroon’s west coast has beautiful black, shiny beaches.

Dahlak Archipelago (Eritrea)

The Dahlak Archipelago sits off the coast of Eritrea. A defining characteristic of this region is the alluring sights of black sand that is ever inviting to visitors.

Mfangano Island Beach

Nyanza’s Mfangano Island has beaches that have acres of black sand. Volcanic activity struck this region decades ago leading to these mineral deposits.

black sand beaches in Africa

Homa Bay in Nyanza. Photo/friendsunitedmeeting

Which Country Has The Most Black Sand?

Egypt and Morocco in North Africa have the greatest black sand deposits. Surprisingly, they do not feature prominently in countries with black sand beaches in Africa although there are small and unknown beaches with black sand. However, these sand deposits are from the River Nile which is Egypt’s largest water source.

For Morocco; its black sand deposits are from Mediterranean Sea which forms some of its sand dunes.  According to the Information and Decision Support Center (IDSC) of the Cabinet, Egypt has one of the greatest black sand resources in all of the Arab world. Its geological reserves are estimated to be worth 1.3 billion cubic meters.

IDSC survey cites that Egypt has 11 locations with black sand and heavy metals along a 400-kilometer stretch from Rashid on the Mediterranean to Rafah. With a length of 400 kilometers, it extends along the eastern coast from the city of Rashid to Rafah.

The resource is 1.3 billion cubic meters in size and has an average heavy metal concentration of 3%, making it the biggest black sand reserve in the world.

Which Countries Have The Best Beaches In Africa?

The best beaches in Africa exhibit a harmonic fusion of unspoiled landscapes, stunning surroundings, and natural beauty. They have fine white sand or unusually black sand with pristine waters, and breathtaking coastal vistas. These beaches provide a variety of activities, from leisure to water sports, in addition to first-rate facilities and eco-friendly tourism methods.

An abundant marine life enhances their attractiveness and vibrant ecosystems. In a nutshell, the best beaches in Africa offer the perfect combination of peace and excitement, making them the perfect getaways for both tourists and travellers interested in seeing the wonders of the African coasts.  Below are African countries with the most reputable in Africa.

  1. South Africa
  2. Kenya
  3. Seychelles
  4. Mauritius
  5. Zanzibar
  6. The Gambia
  7. Mozambique
  8. Sao Tome and Principe
  9. Cape Verde
  10. Madagascar
  11. Namibia


Black sand beaches in Africa offer the same thrill as white sandy beaches across the world. Some of these beaches are less visited while others barely keep up with the huge beachgoers that flock to them.

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About the author

Avatar of Teresa Mwangi

Teresa Mwangi

Teresa is a journalist with years of experience in creating web content. She is a wanderlust at heart, loves travelling and telling stories about tour and travel in Africa by every angle.

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