To actually determine which beach is the absolute best on the planet would require the necessary time and money to travel the world. Besides, it’s a subjective question anyway. Surfers, swimmers and loungers are likely looking for different things during their time at the shore.
Since most people enjoy taking a trip to the shore and walking on the beach with the sea lapping at their unfettered feet, to narrow down that surely lifelong pursuit, this search is confined to the best beaches in the continental U.S.
Yes, Hawaii is not included. Do we really have to go over why? Fine. It’s a tropical paradise. While I’ve never been to Hawaii, I’m sure that even its mediocre ones would surely beat out any on the mainland.
So if you’re looking for the perfect beach, people, here are five for you.
This is probably the best people-watching beach in the U.S. Where else can you see rappers, actors, athletes and other famous people all strutting and sweating with very little clothing on? The locals and the beach itself are pretty hot, too. With its white sand and crystal-clear blue water always at soothing temps — even for those who are somehow cold on hot summer days — outside of Hawaii, the Miami area might have the best beaches in the continental U.S.
For laid-back and relaxed family fun thanks to close-by resorts and golf courses, Myrtle Beach, S.C., can’t be beat. With ocean temps slightly warmer than in the Northeast, though colder than further south in Florida, this is an affordable middle ground below the unattainable spots in the Hamptons and South Florida.
HAMPTONS MAIN BEACH
Want to hobnob with P. Diddy and other millionaire glitterati? Good luck, because they probably won’t be where you are and instead will be attending a white-party or some other mogul-type bash at a private beach on someone’s private property. But if you’re looking to get a taste of how regular old millionaires live, Long Island’s best beaches of the Hamptons area are great. Just arrive early with a parking pass, of course, as you can’t just show up and splash down.
The ultimate California beach experience — with fish tacos included — can be found here. In my stuck-in-the-1980s-brain, surely some surfers there will be saying “dude” to each other, though some slang I’ve never heard of has likely come along since then to replace that ubiquitous word. The beach is directly across the San Diego Bay from the city and personifies So-Cal cool.
If looking for calmer waters in a chill New England setting, Cape Cod simply is sublime. Breakwater Beach, nestled off of Cape Cod Bay by the sleepy seaside village of Brewster, Mass., fits that bill perfectly. It’s also free to enjoy, which is nice on the wallet.
Noah Zuss is a reporter for TheBlot Magazine.