If you’re at the beach and done with swimming what can you do? Most will build sand castles and sculptures, but some decide to go ahead and create art.
Sand art, or sand sculptures, in particular, have been quite popular and competitions and exhibitions are regularly held across the world. Of course, sand castles are the most known form of sand sculptures as kids just love building them.
It turns out to create more professional looking and detailed sand sculptures, just sand, and water will suffice – but it’s important that special sculpture sand is being used in order to maintain a stable structure.
Below is a list of 55 most amazing sand sculptures across the world that will probably give you a whole new perspective on using sand to build art.
With a beautiful sand castle like this, people would immediately want to jump in and accompany Alice on her journey to Wonderland.
2) Rebel, rebel
Sometimes, statues are just a little bit too mainstream. Sand statues are just so much cooler! Someone made this amazing sculpture in David Bowie’s honor. The king of pop rock would definitely be proud.
3) Sand Dragon
Just look at the details of this wonderfully crafted dragon! Everything has been meticulously created, from his teeth up to his eyes and even the woman standing before the dragon’s very eyes. A true work of art.
4) Arabian Nights
This beautiful sculpture of Sheherazade was built in the Netherlands. The story of 1001 Nights or Arabian Nights has been told over many centuries, and this is an amazing representation of that story, created with sand.
5) Hey Mickey
Every year, the coastal city of Ostend in Belgium organizes a summer sand sculpture festival. One year, the main theme was Disney, so this welcoming Mickey Mouse was standing near the entry to say hello to all visitors!
6) Welcoming hands
There is only one word to describe this sand sculpture: beautiful. The details are incredible, as you can see the ridges of the fingerprints, for example. And who wouldn’t want to welcome a cute baby like this with both hands?
7) Ready to ride
This picture was taken at an Oktoberfest event in Germany. Aside from drinking lots of beer during the festivities, you can apparently also spot great sand sculptures such as this one!
These balls of sand are known as ‘sandglobes’, and putting them in formations such as these makes for a really appealing structure. This particular work of art was created by sand artist Naija Fatima.
9) For the GoT fans
If you’ve ever watched Game of Thrones, you’ll immediately recognize these two. The sand sculpture version of Daenerys Targaryen and her dragon looks amazing!
10) Miniature city
Not every sand sculpture needs to be humongous and imposing, smaller pieces such as this one manage to capture the finesse of sand art perfectly too. This small and charming sand city in Australia looks like a real-life painting!
11) Looking majestic
If you ever find yourself in Florida when the Sanding Ovations festival is being held, you’ll spot incredible sand sculptures such as this majestic and calm, yet fierce-looking princess.
12) Da Vinci’s sculpture
Leonardo Da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man is probably one of the most recognizable images in the world, so it had to be made into a sand sculpture. The Dutch quote in the image translates to ‘Creativity is no different than a liberated mind.’ Even Da Vinci himself wouldn’t argue with that!
13) An iconic scene
This was also taken at one of Belgium’s many sand sculpture festivals and is a tribute to one of the most influential movie franchises of all time, Back to The Future.
14) A tale from the Bible
Religious sand sculptures are created quite often, and this is just one of many. According to the artist, this represents a tale from the Bible, which is shown in the miniature form next to the sculpture.
15) A super large sand castle
Sand castles come in all sorts of forms, shapes, and sizes – but this one would definitely be among the tallest and largest ones. It looks great, is well-built and majestic, just like a real castle would be.
16) Sand on the streets
Sand sculptures are usually only shown in exhibitions or special outside locations, but this artist wanted to demonstrate his skills for everyone to see. This beautiful sculpture of two dogs was made in a random street in Ferrara, Italy.
17) What a proposal!
Wedding proposals can definitely be creative and fun, just like this one! What better way to pop that important question than with this beautiful sand structure?
According to artist Petkus Andrius, these two meticulously crafted hands represent someone who’s feeling thankful. This was definitely one of the most impressive pieces at the Sanding Ovations festival in Florida back in 2016.
19) Elephant under the sand
It’s absolutely astonishing how a simple material such as sand can create such beautiful pieces. This Indian-inspired artwork includes a magnificent elephant that will steal the show at any sand art festival.
20) Contemporary art
This piece of contemporary art is definitely different from most other works on this list. It was built in a museum in Warsaw, Poland, and the work is accompanied by the description “highly unlikely, but not impossible.”
21) Beautiful Africa
This is just a stunning work of art that beautifully manages to capture the essence of Africa’s wildlife. On top of the sculpture, you’ll find the Queen of Africa who is looking more majestic than any other human being on the planet.
22) The thinker
We’re not sure if this sculpture is too busy thinking, or is just having a headache! In any case, this amazing sculpture at the Sanding Ovations festival was one of the most popular ones of the entire event.
23) Youth is everywhere
If there is one thing that the artist of this sculpture wants to show, it’s that everybody has a child hidden inside of them, no matter the age. This sculpture actually won the Siesta Key Crystal Classic competition in 2016, and rightfully so!
24) Playing in the sand
There’s just something about this particular piece that just clicks – everything seems to fit so well together, from the sculptured armadillos to the use of real rocks and the background.
25) Spread your wings
A large eagle is covering up this woman with its wings, and it truly makes for a spectacular sight. This large and great-looking sand sculpture is ready to fly!
26) Hello there, octopus
The creator of this masterpiece wanted to build a not-so-ordinary sandcastle, so the artist decided to put a huge octopus on top of it. If you zoom in, you can spot the amazing details of this sculpture!
Admittedly, most of these sand castles and other sculptures only have one color, but the builder of this amazing village decided to take a different approach with colored sand. Talk about taking your sand sculpture to the next level!
28) Nativity scene
This outside sculpture was a recreation of the nativity scene, but as you can see, some of the heads have gone missing due to the weather conditions. Because it was so popular, the organization decided to let it stay on-site anyway.
Avatar is probably one of the most impressive and influential movies from the past few years, and we’re pretty sure that James Cameron would be proud of this amazing artwork.
30) Perspective is everything
Admittedly, this sand sculpture isn’t as impressive or as big as most of the others in this list, but it does have a very high coolness factor. The reason why? Stand behind it, and with the correct perspective, you’ll be on top of the castle!
31) Take a pic, drop a tip
An actual sand sculpture that you can sit on? That certainly was a challenge for the artist known as Mr. Drewp, who built a sofa sculpture with Donald Trump sitting in it. Amazingly, the sand sculpture has no problem at all with real people putting their weight on it.
32) This one deserves a ‘sanding ovation’
This beautiful piece of sand art has a very special meaning, as it illustrates the love and affection a parent shares with their child. A heartfelt message and a phenomenal sculpture!
33) These are not the droids you’re looking for
If there are two robots that are universally known across the world, it has got to be R2-D2 and C-3PO. Their sand versions look just as good as the real droids in a galaxy far, far away…
34) Miniature sculptures
This sand sculpture is a fantastic example of the ‘picture in a picture in a picture’ phenomenon, where the same thing gets repeated every time, only smaller. It’s amazing how the artist even managed to create the beautiful large sculpture, let alone the miniature versions!
35) Art of a world champion
This work was actually made by the World Champion in Sandsculpting, Mr. Maxim Gazendam from The Netherlands. This sculpture is the first thing you see when you enter a local light and sand festival in the artist’s home country.
36) Hello, Vienna
This beautiful and amazingly crafted sand castle in Barcelona has been a huge tourist attraction since it was built, and it’s not hard to understand why. Just look at the impeccable details!
It turns out that superheroes and sand sculptures are a combination made in heaven. This sand art exhibition in Singapore is the dream of every comic fan!
38) The power of a hug
There is nothing greater than the love of a parent for their child, and that doesn’t only apply to us, humans. What a beautiful sculpture of these two chimpanzees showing their affection for each other.
39) One happy bear
Even though the town of Weston-Super-Mare in the UK may not be that well-known, the yearly Weston Sandsculpture Festival always manages to attract quite the crowd. This happy bear is just one of the many cool sand sculptures displayed during the festival.
40) Thinking about magic potions
Astérix and Obelix are without a doubt one of the coolest duos in the world of comic books, so they definitely deserve to have a sand sculpture made in their honor. You can see both of them thinking and daydreaming, probably about their favorite magic potions…
41) Waiting for its prey
Pictures can be deceiving, but this sand crocodile is actually huge! This sand sculpture can be found on a beach near one of Holland’s numerous camping spots. And as you can see, watching the sunset with this crocodile by your side is just immensely cool.
42) A beautiful veil
When this sand sculpture was unveiled (we’re truly sorry for the word pun), bystanders couldn’t help but be impressed by the details. Veils are always incredibly hard to represent in an art form, but this artist definitely aced it.
43) Size matters
Even though the larger sand sculptures tend to receive the most attention and praise, sometimes the smaller structures are equally as impressive. This great castle was even built in the palm of a hand!
44) Looking fierce
Well, not every sand sculpture can be welcoming and warm, but that doesn’t make it any less beautiful or impressive. Just look at how well this mean-looking sand sculpture monster has been built! From a distance, you probably can’t even tell it’s made out of sand.
45) Goddess of sand
This sand sculpture can definitely be called impressive! Just look at how it manages to blend in with the natural sand without a sweat. The sculpture represents the sand goddess, and there’s definitely no reason to doubt that.
46) White castle
Even though the yellowish and brown tint of regular sand has its charms, there’s no denying that pearlwhite sand can take a sand sculpture to the next level – such as this castle that seems fitting for a Disney princess.
47) Stars in the sky
This is a beautiful “good night” piece with the classic picture of a girl sitting on the moon. The artist has also cleverly used sunlight to create the illusion of stars in the sky, which makes the whole artwork even more impressive.
48) The truth shall set you free
This sculpture was built on the Las Canteras beach in Gran Canaria, and it’s accompanied by the phrase “The truth will set you free.” Just look at how well it manages to create a perspective of depth, it’s truly stunning.
49) The castle from Frozen
Even though this impressive sand castle just might look like a regular medieval castle, when you take a closer look you’ll recognize it from none other than the massively popular movie ‘Frozen’. This sculpture was also built at the Sand Sculpture Festival in Ostend, Belgium, along with dozens of other Disney-themed works.
50) Love is powerful
There is no greater power in the world than love, and that’s a sentiment that’s on display in this magnificent sculpture of two lovers. It’s unknown where this sculpture was built or who the artist is, but what we do know is that it’s absolutely stunning.
51) The flower girl
This sand sculpture is an absolute gem was created by the Japanese artist Toshihiko Hosaka, who has been using sand as his canvas for over twenty years, and you can definitely tell that he has mastered the craft of sand sculpting.
52) Extinct, but not forgotten
It’s a huge contrast with the warm and calm flower girl from the previous slide, but this Tyrannosaurus Rex is another beautiful piece of art from the sand sculpting legend Hosaka. He’s posing here with his most impressive creation to date, a true-to-scale T-rex.
53) One with the waves
Being one with the waves and going with the flow is every surfer’s dream. When people spot this fantastic sculpture in Revere, Massachusetts, most of them have to resist the urge to grab a surfboard and hit the waves as well!
54) A whole new world
The castles from Disney movies are absolutely perfect to recreate with sand, and Aladdin’s palace just had to be on this list. This creator of this castle clearly wants you to jump into a whole new world!
55) Staring in the eye of the…
Well, it’s not exactly a tiger, but a huge and beautiful turtle like this one will do as well. The artist even built a castle on top of the giant turtle’s shell and definitely has an eye for detail. Every single grain of this sand sculpture is picture perfect!