Surf’s up, sunshine seekers and sea-lovers! With Summer 2023 underway, it’s time to plan those perfect beach getaways. If the rolling waves, sun-kissed sands, and blissful ocean breezes of the Southeast are calling your name, you’re in the right place. This article gives an overview of the best summer beach adventures in this stunning region.
From the white sands of Florida to the charming coastline of the Carolinas, the Southeast US is a beach lover’s paradise, filled with romance for love birds and adventure for free birds. It’s not just about sprawling on the beach and catching rays—although, let’s be honest, that sounds fantastic too! It’s also about the exhilarating beach activities that can fill your days with fun in the sun. From playful beach volleyball games, refreshing swims in the crystal-clear waters, and sandcastle building contests with the kids, to surfing those perfect waves, snorkeling among vibrant marine life, and embarking on peaceful paddleboard excursions as the sun sets—every beach day is a new adventure. This guide will take you on a virtual tour of the top spots to soak up the sun, surf, and sand this summer. So, grab your towel and sunglasses, slather on that sunscreen, and let’s dive into your best beach summer yet!
Top Beaches in the Southeast
Here are 10 of the most popular beaches to put on your list to visit:
- Siesta Key, Florida: If beaches were dessert, then Siesta Key would be a mouthwatering meringue, with powdery white sand that refuses to get hot, no matter how sunny it gets! The crystal-clear waters are just a bonus. Located on the Gulf Coast of sunny Florida, Siesta Key is famous for its cool, quartz-crystal sand that contrasts beautifully with the azure sea. Perfect for building sandcastles with the kids, or indulging in a romantic seaside picnic with your honey while wearing your matching swimsuits for couples.
- Outer Banks, North Carolina: A collection of tranquil islands off North Carolina’s coast, the Outer Banks are the ideal antidote for anyone seeking escape from the hustle and bustle. Pristine, uncrowded beaches await you here. They’re also home to the historic Cape Hatteras Lighthouse— perfect for those Instagram-worthy shots.
- Destin, Florida: Imagine a place where the waters shimmer like emeralds, and the sand is as white as sugar. That’s Destin, located on Florida’s Emerald Coast. This beach paradise doesn’t just offer breathtaking views, it’s also a popular spot for deep-sea fishing. So why not take a charter boat out and try your luck?
- Hilton Head Island, South Carolina: Golf enthusiast or not, you’re going to adore Hilton Head Island. The 12 miles of picture-perfect shoreline invite you to unwind, sunbathe, or engage in a thrilling game of beach volleyball. And if golfing is your passion, don’t forget to check out the world-class golf courses nearby!
- St. Augustine Beach, Florida: History buffs, rejoice! St. Augustine, the oldest city in the U.S, offers clear waters, soft sand, and a delightful peek into the country’s past. Make sure to visit the historic St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum after your beach day!
- Clearwater Beach, Florida: Clearwater Beach, with its beautiful sands and clear waters, is an activity lover’s dream come true. Whether you fancy parasailing, dolphin-watching tours, or simply catching a gorgeous sunset, there’s always something to do here.
- Virginia Beach, Virginia: As a quintessential resort city, Virginia Beach spoils you with sandy shores, a lively boardwalk perfect for biking or a leisurely walk, and waves that make surfers’ hearts skip a beat. Don’t forget to explore the local seafood scene—it’s simply delicious!
- Myrtle Beach, South Carolina: With a warm climate, sprawling beaches, and a smorgasbord of entertainment options, Myrtle Beach is a favorite among tourists. Ride the SkyWheel for a bird’s eye view of the city or enjoy a live show at the Carolina Opry—it’s never a dull moment here.
- Naples, Florida: A haven for shopping aficionados and foodies, Naples brings together high-end shopping, fine dining, and stunning white sand beaches. After a day of retail therapy and gourmet indulgence, take a relaxing stroll or jog along the beach.
- South Beach, Miami, Florida: Welcome to the playground of celebrities and models! South Beach is where you can soak up the sun on pristine sands, swim in clear waters, and maybe even spot a celebrity or two. And when the sun goes down, the vibrant nightlife comes alive, offering you endless entertainment options.
That wraps up our top 2023 beaches in the Southeast for now. Remember, whichever beach you choose to visit, be sure to check the local travel advisories. As always, safety first! Happy beach days, everyone!