100 best beach towns in the US

100 Best Beach Towns In The US

Photo courtesy of Canva

By Stacker

December 6, 2023

With its warm weather and extensive shore line, Florida dominates the list of the best beach towns.

Beach destinations were popular this year, according to a survey from vacation-rental platform Vacasa, and outdoor recreation remains a top priority. Not only are beaches a great place to unwind and create family bonding moments, but they also boost people’s mental health.

So what makes a good beach town? Access to a beach, of course, but also plenty of indoor and outdoor activities to keep kids entertained, warm weather, and a long beach season. So perhaps it’s not surprising that Hawaii and Florida cities dominate this list. But besides the Aloha and the Sunshine states, beach-goers can enjoy the sand and surf in places off the beaten path in Texas and on the Great Lakes.

Stacker crunched the numbers to find the best beach towns in the U.S. To be considered a beach town, each city needed at least one beach on the Environmental Protection Agency’s National List of Beaches. The EPA list includes only beaches that are used recreationally and open to the public for free or for a fee; it has more than 6,000 beaches on the United States’ Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf coasts and on the Great Lakes identified by states and tribes in response to the Beaches Environmental Assessment and Coastal Health Act of 2000. The act requires states to report water quality monitoring to an EPA database.

Rankings were determined by a number of factors weighted by importance in the following order from most to least important: number of beaches monitored through the BEACH Act, the total shoreline of those beaches, access to beach-related businesses based on Census Bureau County Business Patterns, and Zillow median home prices.

Read on to get some vacation-planning inspiration.

#100. Algoma, Wisconsin

– Number of beaches: 14
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 5.8
– Average swim season length: 91 days
– Average county summer temperature: 78 degrees
– Median home price: $193,899

#99. Apollo Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $478,627

#98. Hana, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 1.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $904,398

#97. Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 13.6
– Average swim season length: 153 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $700,638

#96. Longboat Key, Florida

– Number of beaches: 2
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 9.2
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $1,115,120

#95. Kitty Hawk, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.0
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $597,728

#94. Kapolei, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $858,441

Danita Delimont // Shutterstock

#93. Hauula, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.3
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $826,064

#92. Delray Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 2.6
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $350,525

#91. Clearwater, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 1.6
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $351,643

#90. Portland, Texas

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.4
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 86 degrees
– Median home price: $256,123

#89. Ruskin, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $352,585

#88. Corolla, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 42.5
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 78 degrees
– Median home price: $834,625

#87. Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 20.5
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $558,603

#86. Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 2
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 15.7
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $807,673

#85. Big Pine Key, Florida

– Number of beaches: 3
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 1.8
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $784,190

#84. Paia, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.3
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $1,164,903

#83. Gulf Breeze, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 9.5
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $471,503

#82. Saint Augustine, Florida

– Number of beaches: 2
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.2
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $457,263

#81. Gulfport, Mississippi

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.5
– Average swim season length: 213 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $181,098

#80. Saint Simons Island, Georgia

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.9
– Average swim season length: 213 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $586,806

#79. Beaufort, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 1.7
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $366,193

#78. San Diego, California

– Number of beaches: 23
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 28.2
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 72 degrees
– Median home price: $901,095

#77. Port Arthur, Texas

– Number of beaches: 2
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 19.6
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $84,182

#76. Kure Beach, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 6.2
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $710,732

#75. Fort Pierce, Florida

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.8
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $282,266

#74. Tampa, Florida

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.6
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $385,570

#73. Navarre, Florida

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 15.4
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $407,733

#72. Sarasota, Florida

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 2.4
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $461,941

#71. Sneads Ferry, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 31.5
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $364,587

#70. Saint Petersburg, Florida

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 1.6
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $355,482

#69. Ocracoke, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 32.0
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $406,115

#68. Lihue, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.1
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $805,236

#67. Fernandina Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 5.7
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $589,552

#66. Maunaloa, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 13
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 8.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 67 degrees
– Median home price: $393,439

#65. Kaneohe, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 19.3
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $1,068,360

#64. Norfolk, Virginia

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.4
– Average swim season length: 136 days
– Average county summer temperature: 78 degrees
– Median home price: $275,898

#63. Holly Ridge, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.8
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $322,102

#62. Eastpoint, Florida

– Number of beaches: 3
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 14.4
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $738,216

#61. Venice, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $455,660

#60. Indian Rocks Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 2
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $874,422

#59. Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 12
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 5.9
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $1,322,625

#58. Grand Isle, Louisiana

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 6.5
– Average swim season length: 183 days
– Average county summer temperature: 84 degrees
– Median home price: $125,781

#57. Port Washington, Wisconsin

– Number of beaches: 12
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 6.1
– Average swim season length: 106 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $301,284

#56. Kilauea, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.4
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $1,342,557

#55. Carrabelle, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.8
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $261,205

#54. Salvo, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 26.4
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $579,070

#53. Waveland, Mississippi

– Number of beaches: 3
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.5
– Average swim season length: 213 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $201,755

#52. Destin, Florida

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 25.4
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $632,517

#51. Gulf Shores, Alabama

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 15.0
– Average swim season length: 152 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $432,098

#50. Hilo, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 11
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 5.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 78 degrees
– Median home price: $492,855

#49. Palacios, Texas

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 85 degrees
– Median home price: $160,644

#48. Koloa, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 14
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 3.3
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $1,126,256

#47. Wailuku, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 6.2
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $868,846

#46. Hobe Sound, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $498,629

#45. Kahuku, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 8.3
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $760,832

#44. Tybee Island, Georgia

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 9.7
– Average swim season length: 208 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $603,876

#43. Santa Rosa Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.5
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $928,755

#42. South Padre Island, Texas

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 12.8
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 86 degrees
– Median home price: $406,800

#41. New Smyrna Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 1
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 17.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $473,262

#40. Kailua Kona, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 20
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 8.5
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 78 degrees
– Median home price: $818,564

#39. Miami Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $514,087

#38. Fort Lauderdale, Florida

– Number of beaches: 3
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 19.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $514,421

#37. Texas City, Texas

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 8.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 85 degrees
– Median home price: $204,314

#36. Gilchrist, Texas

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 8.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 85 degrees
– Median home price: $395,470

#35. Galveston, Texas

– Number of beaches: 22
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 56.1
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 75 degrees
– Median home price: $349,270

#34. Englewood, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $393,761

#33. Pensacola, Florida

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 9.3
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $250,153

#32. Haleiwa, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 18
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 16.6
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $1,573,151

#31. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 19.6
– Average swim season length: 153 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $302,188

#30. Pompano Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 3
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.3
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $351,510

#29. Port Saint Joe, Florida

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 37.1
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $470,271

#28. Panacea, Florida

– Number of beaches: 2
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 13.9
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $365,863

#27. Vero Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 6.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $369,768

#26. Emerald Isle, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 17.0
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $660,718

#25. Cameron, Louisiana

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 8.4
– Average swim season length: 183 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $167,056

#24. Kaunakakai, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.4
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $430,908

#23. Port Bolivar, Texas

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 14.2
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $438,859

#22. Hanalei, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 12
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.5
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $3,444,139

#21. Hollywood, Florida

– Number of beaches: 4
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 15.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $432,034

#20. Nags Head, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 15
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 20.7
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $646,313

#19. Panama City Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 14.0
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $491,863

#18. Lanai City, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 13.0
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $735,939

#17. Jensen Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 3
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 11.1
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $400,028

#16. Atlantic Beach, North Carolina

– Number of beaches: 14
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 13.0
– Average swim season length: 214 days
– Average county summer temperature: 79 degrees
– Median home price: $476,892

#15. Daytona Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $264,681

#14. Naples, Florida

– Number of beaches: 7
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 9.5
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $581,150

#13. Rockport, Texas

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $320,495

#12. Freeport, Texas

– Number of beaches: 8
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 20.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 85 degrees
– Median home price: $125,879

#11. Port Aransas, Texas

– Number of beaches: 10
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 20.1
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 86 degrees
– Median home price: $576,533

#10. Virginia Beach, Virginia

– Number of beaches: 22
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 24.0
– Average swim season length: 141 days
– Average county summer temperature: 78 degrees
– Median home price: $370,003

Michael Gordon // Shutterstock

#9. Lahaina, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 25
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 13.2
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $1,050,749

#8. Fort Walton Beach, Florida

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 9.3
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $335,295

#7. Kihei, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 24
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 16.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 80 degrees
– Median home price: $1,080,076

#6. Honolulu, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 42
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 24.4
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $795,722

#5. Waianae, Hawaii

– Number of beaches: 21
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 19.9
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 81 degrees
– Median home price: $575,904

#4. Stuart, Florida

– Number of beaches: 5
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 7.7
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 83 degrees
– Median home price: $385,022

#3. Port Lavaca, Texas

– Number of beaches: 9
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 4.5
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 86 degrees
– Median home price: $171,082

#2. Panama City, Florida

– Number of beaches: 6
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 22.7
– Average swim season length: 244 days
– Average county summer temperature: 82 degrees
– Median home price: $268,370

#1. Corpus Christi, Texas

– Number of beaches: 31
– Miles of monitored shoreline: 34.2
– Average swim season length: 364 days
– Average county summer temperature: 86 degrees
– Median home price: $212,542

Story editing by Jeff Inglis. Copy editing by Kristen Wegrzyn. Photo selection by Clarese Moller.

 

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