From providing recreation to reducing stress hormones, water is a mood booster: research shows that people need just as much blue space as they do green for peak psychological health. Lakes, rivers, bays, and oceans can all offer respite and a place to cut loose for anyone needing a bit of a breather. Whether your pastime is water sports or beach lounging, these are just a few of the perks that make the coastal lifestyle worth pursuing.
Along with the water come some of the world’s most breathtaking views. Appreciate the scenery poolside at this Camp de Mar villa overlooking the soaring mountains of Mallorca. Known for its pristine beaches, this popular resort destination is seeing an upswing in its cultural offerings, from festivals to a flourishing food scene.
Or settle in to the spectacle at this well-situated home in the Algarve on Portugal’s southern coast. Rich in alcoves and direct beach access, this five-bedroom coastal property ensures you can watch the vista go by, whatever the time of day.
Relaxation in the City
You don’t have to trade the conveniences of metropolitan living for proximity to waterfront. Get away from it all while staying in the thick of things at this 10 Emerald Bay estate in California’s Laguna Beach neighborhood. Built on the second level of a private, crescent-shaped half-mile beach on the California Rivera, this property offers easy access to the restaurants and shops of Orange County while also keeping the rippling blue waters in sight at all times.
For those looking to pair the privacy of an island dwelling with the conveniences of an urban center, there’s this modernist Auckland abode. Four spacious bedrooms and a large formal lounge flow directly to the outdoor grounds overlooking the harbor, complete with lush subtropical gardens, wood-burning fireplace, and heated outdoor pool. And if you feel the urge to take a boat out for a spin, this home is just a short 10 minutes from the downtown of the City of Sails.
Elaine Darling, Rego Sotheby’s International Realty
While water comes in all shapes and temperatures, there’s something to be said for the tropical waterfront. Find tranquility on a tiny island in the Atlantic, where this one-of-a-kind manor house rests right on the cusp of Tucker’s Town, Bermuda. Epitomizing elevated island living, elegant English colonial-style interiors offer plenty of space for entertaining, while the spacious southerly patio gives guests prime real estate for lounging in view of the turquoise waters.
If the Indian Ocean is more your speed, take your ease at this five-bedroom colonial villa in Mauritius. Catch glimpses of the island’s astonishing wildlife at the 67-acre Île aux Aigrettes nature reserve, or stay closer to home to enjoy dips in your heated infinity pool next to infinite waves of blue.
Whether a sturdy fishing cottage along the North Atlantic or a thatch-roofed abode in the South Pacific, homes on the shore have been adapted to suit their environs. Enjoy the slower pace of island time at this La Romana estate inspired by the surrounding natural environment. This home features Brazilian walnut detailing, a central palapa roofed in dried palm leaves, and seamless transitions from indoors to out. Artisanally crafted, this is a home that could only exist on the Caribbean coast of the Dominican Republic.
Centuries of tradition are on display at this sprawling Huahine estate. Some 32 bungalows scattered across the grounds are built on one of the oldest archaeological sites in the French Polynesian islands. The history of the grounds are preserved in the property’s traditional Polynesian decor and architecture, guaranteeing that a sense of place runs richly through this waterfront retreat.
Opportunities to Set Sail
It would be a remiss list that didn’t include boating as one of the supreme pleasures of being near water. Sailing enthusiasts looking to stretch their sea legs can do so at this New Providence Island home located in the Bahamian capital of Nassau. Dock at the property’s private slip capable of accommodating crafts of up to 40ʹ. Enjoy sunset strolls on the beach, or duck into town to try Nassau’s myriad restaurants and eateries.
Those who like their water unsalted can retreat to this New England berth, a sprawling Wolfeboro hideaway located on the largest lake in New Hampshire. Not your average lake house, this majestic home comes complete with a four-slip boat dock, three-bay mahogany boathouse with boat lifts, 600 feet of waterfront with views of soaring mountain resort ski slopes, and a private helipad for welcoming all weekenders.
Whatever your interests, there is always something to appreciate on the water. No matter how long you spend away, you’ll likely hear a serpentine coastline or sandy shore calling you back.
Find a property that suits your waterfront profile, and take up residence beside the sea, lake, or river of your choice.