Temperatures are (finally) warming up, and that means beach season is upon us. To celebrate the sunshine and approach of summer, 10Best asked our readers to vote for their favorite beaches. According to the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration, our country has over 95,000 miles of shoreline, and while not all of it is sandy, that still leaves loads of beaches to choose from.
For the past four weeks, readers have been voting daily for their favorites in six U.S. states, and the results are in!
Click on each category below to see the full list of winners:
Best California Beach: Huntington City Beach
Huntington Beach is one of the world’s top surfing spots — Photo courtesy of Visit California/Ryan Killackey
Surf City U.S.A. is known for awesome breaks near the famous Huntington Beach Pier as well as great swimming and boogie boarding away from those hanging ten. Flat sand for miles ensures plenty of space to sunbathe even in peak seasons. Amenities include fire rings, lifeguards, concessions selling almost anything you’d need for a beach day as well as a bike path, volleyball courts and restrooms.
Full list of winners: Best California Beaches »
Best Florida Beach: Pensacola Beach
Pensacola is one of the longest barrier islands in the world — Photo courtesy of iStock / lightphoto
The narrow strip of white, powder-soft sand known as Pensacola Beach is backed by a boardwalk filled with shops and restaurants. Beach goers enjoy clear, shallow waters and gentle waves, perfect for swimming, along with a relaxed old Florida feel.
Full list of winners: Best Florida Beaches »
Best Hawaii Beach: Poipu Beach Park
Poipu is the most popular beach on Kauai’s South Shore — Photo courtesy of Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) / Tor Johnson
A series of three crescents on the south coast of Kauai make up Poipu Beach. It offers a little bit for everyone with a variety of water activities to enjoy when not watching palm trees sway from the comfort of your beach towel. Surf closer to the rocky outcroppings and find calmer waters mid-crescent. Shallow water and lifeguards near Poipu State Park make swimming a dream.
Full list of winners: Best Hawaii Beaches »
Best North Carolina Beach: Emerald Isle
Emerald Isle occupies a barrier island on North Carolina’s Crystal Coast — Photo courtesy of iStock / StillFrameStoryteller
Situated on the western end of Bogue Banks, Emerald Isle features 12 miles of largely undeveloped shoreline offering stunning views of both the Atlantic Ocean and Bogue Inlet. While plenty of beach goers come simply to soak up the sun, the beach and Bogue Inlet Pier are popular for fishing as well.
Full list of winners: Best North Carolina Beaches »
Best South Carolina Beach: Cherry Grove Beach
Cherry Grove is one of several beach communities in North Myrtle Beach — Photo courtesy of Rain0975 / Flickr
Situated in North Myrtle Beach, Cherry Grove Beach is home to a 985-foot fishing pier with expansive sandy beach to either side, over 3 miles in total.
Full list of winners: Best South Carolina Beaches »
Best Texas Beach: Rockport Beach
The town of Rockport boasts a beautiful beach and easy access to some of the world’s best birdwatching — Photo courtesy of iStock / jerryhopman
The Lone Star State’s first designated Blue Wave Beach, Rockport Beach prides itself on its clean, crescent-shaped stretch of sand. Popular with families thanks to its calm and shallow water, Rockport Beach offers convenient amenities like numerous shaded picnic areas, grills, volleyball courts, playgrounds and a walking path.
Full list of winners: Best Texas Beaches »
10Best congratulates all these reader-favorite beaches!