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Top 10 Best Beaches in the USA
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#1 Hawaii – The Big Island

Why go: Big Island is called “Big Island" for a reason: Its offerings are abundant, and so are its beaches. Here you’ll find some geographical oddities (ever been to a beach with green sand?) and awe-inspiring natural wonders. The beaches at Hapuna, Kaunaoa, or Kua Bay also offer picture-perfect beaches for your perfect island getaway.

#2 Maui

Why go: Travelers flock to Maui for its diversity of attractions and unforgettable geography; it’s also got a ton of beaches. Be sure to check out the burgundy-hued sands at Kaihalulu, which is often free of the heavy crowds found along the island’s less isolated shorelines. And if you want to try your hand at surfing, check out Ho’okipa Beach.

#3 U.S. Virgin Islands

Why go: This Caribbean getaway features everything you’d want in an American beach destination: bright blue waters, beautiful strips of sand, and excellent shopping nearby. The island of St. Thomas contains the perfect shore for every beach-goer, as well as access to an abundance of watersports, including parasailing, snorkeling and jet-skiing. St. John’s beaches are harder to reach, but you’ll be rewarded with fewer crowds.

#4 Honolulu – Oahu

Why go: Oahu is the most popular tourist destination in Hawaii, and its beaches are a big reason. Scattered throughout the island’s coastline, you’ll find several highly ranked state beach parks, including the famous Kailua Beach Park and the resort-heavy Waikiki Beach, where the creamy sands and safe swimming conditions cater to families.

#5 Outer Banks

Why go: The Outer Banks remain a classic East Coast beach destination, with miles of expansive sands to please any landlocked traveler. OBX’s landscape remains largely undeveloped, allowing you plenty of photo ops without the intrusion of high-rises. While many beaches lack lifeguards, the surf is usually calm enough for swimmers of all levels. (Just be sure to check swimming conditions before entering the water.)

#6 Hilton Head

Why Go: Touting pristine beaches, this South Carolina retreat attracts East Coasters in droves looking for the golden sands of Myrtle Beach with a stronger hint of luxury. Along with its powdery shores, Coligny Beach boasts numerous amenities, including a shopping area and dining options. But you’ll find fewer crowds and better swimming conditions at calmer Alder Lane.

#7 Miami Beach

Why go: Miami Beach caters to both the glamorous, party-hungry elite and your average, sun-hungry beachgoer. You can spend your days soaking up the rays at Lummus Park in trendy South Beach or lounge on the quieter sands of at Haulover Beach Park (just be aware that Haulover is a clothing-optional beach). Come nightfall, Ocean Drive’s neon signs advertise plenty of seaside entertainment.

#8 Cape Cod

Why Go: Sure, Cape Cod’s breezy seaside has drawn influential politicos and celebrities for decades, but don’t think that the Cape is all about glitz and glamour. The charm lies in the laid-back atmosphere that prevails everywhere from its beautiful Rail Trail to its enchanting National Seashore. Visit Nauset, Marconi or Herring Cove Beach for seclusion and R&R.

#9 Santa Barbara

Why Go: At the crack of dawn, locals head to gorgeous East Beach to stake out prime sandy real estate. Filled with volleyball courts, swaying palm trees and picnic tables, East Beach is perfect for a day spent splashing in the water, playing sports or sunbathing. And when you’ve had enough sun, you’re only a short walk from the plentiful boutiques and dining options on State Street.

#10 Fort Lauderdale

Why go: Some travelers consider Fort Lauderdale to be a gentler, more laidback alternative to Miami Beach. Stretching out over 23 miles, Fort Lauderdale Beach has plenty of real estate to go around. To top it off, you won’t have to contend with the party-hard vibe exuded by the city’s neighbor to the south. But should you crave that raucous atmosphere, South Beach is just a quick drive down Route 1A.



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