Now that warmer weather, longer days and school vacations are upon us, it’s time to get outside and enjoy the outdoors! For American families everywhere, that means packing up the car and hitting the beach.
Whether you’re going for a daytrip, a long weekend, or a several-week vacation with all your family and friends, the beach is an ideal spot to relax, have fun and enjoy some quality time. At the beach, you get the pleasure of spending time outside in the sun, soaking in the vitamin D that your body needs! And, of course, you get to swim in the ocean, play in the sand, enjoy beach games, and maybe even hit up a boardwalk or two! What could be better?
If you’re planning on taking a beach holiday in the US this summer, let us guide you towards the 5 best places to be—they’re scattered across the country, and they each have something unique to offer. Wherever you go, be sure to pack plenty of sunscreen—and snacks!
Said to be “America’s favorite beach,” Myrtle Beach in South Carolina gets approximately 17.9 million visitors each year! This beach is on the mid-Atlantic coastline, and serves as a popular vacation spot for people from all across the east coast.
Myrtle Beach is known for its celebrity-designed golf courses and sand the color of brown sugar. It is a hub of the Grand Strand, which is a 60-mile string of beaches, all with stunning scenery and places to relax. Myrtle Beach boasts one of the country’s tallest Ferris wheels, a beachfront boardwalk with arcades, souvenir stands and restaurants, and the old-fashioned Family Kingdom amusement park that provides endless fun for thrill-seekers.
One of the most popular and most southernmost beaches in the US, Miami Beach is a south Florida island city, connected by bridges to mainland Miami. It’s known for its early-20th-century art-deco architecture, with a whole historic district dedicated to its visual style.
Miami Beach attracts approximately 3.5 million tourists a year, with most visitors coming from the American Northeast (only a short plane ride away). Ocean Drive is an especially great strip to walk and soak in beautiful art, great restaurants and bustling nightlife. White sands and palm trees make any length of time spent in Miami well worth it.
Described by many to resemble a faraway fairytale land, Nantucket is a tiny island community off the coast of Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Its dune-backed beaches and delicious seafood make it a popular summer destination for people from all across the country.
The cobblestoned streets and colonial architecture in the town of Nantucket transport people back to America’s earliest days—and give visitors plenty of opportunity to immerse themselves in island life. Critically-acclaimed restaurants, high-end boutiques and steepled churches dot serve as a picturesque backdrop to those wanting to relax on the beach. For those interested in whaling, the town’s Whaling Museum gives an authentic glimpse into the island’s role as a hub for 19th century whaling.
Santa Monica Beach is best known for its pier—a popular landmark for tourists, and a plethora of fun for those looking for great rides and restaurants. With approximately 8.3 million visitors per year, Santa Monica strikes a balance between rowdy and relaxed. Whether you’re looking for a quiet day on the beach, or a night on the town, there’s something for everyone here!
Located just west of downtown Los Angeles, Santa Monica gives visitors gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean. If you want to see the quintessential California sunset—with the sun setting over the water—grab a blanket and arrive at Santa Monica beach around golden hour. For gym buffs, there’s a special stretch of beach next to the pier called Muscle Beach, an outdoor gym established in the 1930. Get a quick workout in before, during or after your beach day!
An island city on the Gulf Coast of Texas, Galveston is home to Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier on the south shore. It’s where locals and visitors alike gather to enjoy amusement rides, restaurants, and gorgeous beach views.
Boasting an annual visitation rate of approximately 5.8 million people per year, Galveston is especially well-known for Moody Gardens, where giant glass pyramids house sharks, monkeys and other animals. Be sure to indulge in some delicious seafood in Galveston—and if you’re feeling adventurous, head west to Galveston Island State Park, where you’ll find trails, kayak launches and fishing spots. For those hot Texas summers, Galveston is a perfect little oasis!