On the Andros Island beach the weather was actually calm, the wind had died down after a week of very stormy weather.
The sandstorm before your eyes is fake. It was a very quiet morning and there was hardly any wave action.
In this time of fake news we can’t blindly trust what we read, nor can we blindly trust the images we see. But you’ve suspected this for a long while.
Sand storms are very hard on camera equipment so it’s safer to create sandstorms digitally. The good news folks - believe me - naturephotos.com will tell you what’s fake and what’s real.
This effect was achieved by applying a fractalius digital filter. These filters can be ‘dialed in’ from 100% down to 1%. The best effect varies from image to image. Here this filter applied at about 10%.