With its fine, white sand and clear waters, Florida’s Siesta Beach in the Gulf of Mexico attracts beach-lovers from around the world
Hundreds of yards in length, this year-round beach topped Dr. Beach’s 27th annual top 10 list of US beaches, released in May 29.
Dr. Beach, aka Florida International University professor Stephen P. Leatherman, issues his annual review of 650 US coastal beaches on the basis of 50 criteria, including water and sand quality, beach safety, environmental management and no-smoking policies.
Including the first-place Siesta Beach, Florida had the most beaches listed with three.
Hawaii had two beaches on the top 10 list, with North Carolina, South Carolina, Massachusetts, New York and beach-heavy California each listing just one beach each.
Hawaii’s Hapuna Beach entered the list this year, displacing 2016 winner Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve, also in Hawaii.
Leatherman used to retire his winners but has decided to stop doing it. Case in point — Siesta Beach previously held the top prize in 2011.
1. Siesta Beach, Sarasota, Florida
2. Kapalua Bay Beach, Maui, Hawaii
3. Ocracoke Lifeguarded Beach, Outer Banks of North Carolina
4. Grayton Beach State Park, Florida
5. Coopers Beach, Southampton, New York
6. Coast Guard Beach, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
7. Caladesi Island State Park, Dunedin/Clearwater, Florida
8. Hapuna Beach, Big Island, Hawaii
9. Coronado Beach, San Diego, California
10. Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Island, South Carolina.
Photos: Dr. Beach