1. Formentor, Mallorca. We've been here several times. It has exactly the qualities I look for, plus the pine trees shading the beach make it so attractive.
2. Cala Macarella, Menorca. The nicest walk to any beach I think ever, over the rocks and through a pine wood. The turquoise sea is just ridiculously intense in its clarity. Gets busy though, as it's not the biggest of beaches.
3. Cala Mondrago, Mallorca. Another busy beach, but when the last bus goes you can have it all to yourself almost, as there's only one hotel. There's also another beach beyond the headland which is slightly larger.
4. Es Pujols, Formentera. I could have chosen any beach on this beautiful little island, but this is where we stayed and I loved swimming to the island just out to shore.
5. Benirrás Beach, Ibiza. Hippies come and drum here when the sun is setting but don't let that put you off! The unique rocks out to sea make it especially memorable.
6. Conil Town Beach. We love the Costa de La Luz and could have chosen any one on this wild and windswept coast (Zahara de los Atunes, Barbate, Tarifa) but this place has it all; a great none touristy Spanish town and mile upon mile of golden sand.
7. Playa de la Concha, San Sebastian. I wanted to choose one city beach, and this is perfectly formed sandy arc is backed by beautiful old buildings. We were very lucky, apparently it rains a lot, but it was nice and sunny when we went.
8. Aigua Blava, Catalonia. Small but perfectly formed. Stay at the Parador (Spanish Government owned hotel chain,) at the top of the hill if you can afford to!
Playa de los Genoveses, Cabo de Gata, Almeria. Rural, wild and beautiful. Many films have been shot here including Raiders of the Lost Ark and Lawrence of Arabia.