When I go to the beach, it’s to relax and get some sun. When some of my friends go to the beach, it’s to grab a kayak and get out on the water. Everyone has their different agendas when they hit the beach, so it’s a good thing the US has plenty of options for providing a whole host of activities.
1.Alabama — Gulf State Park
Alabama’s Gulf State Park includes a long stretch of beautiful white sand on the Gulf of Mexico and provides your usual state park amenities like camping and swimming.
2.Alaska — Black Sand Beach
If you’re seeking a cold-water adventure, try kayaking along Alaska’s Black Sand Beach.
3.Arizona — Lake Powell Beach
Lake Powell bisects Arizona and Utah along the Colorado River and is the second largest man-made reservoir.
4.Arkansas — Shores Lake
Shores Lake is nestled in the Ozark Mountains and is the perfect place to have a picnic.
5.California – Sand Dollar Beach
If you’ve seen Southern California’s serene, white-sand beaches and want something different, go north to Big Sur and check out Sand Dollar Beach, where you can surf — or watch other people surf.
6.Colorado – Grand Lake
Grand Lake is Colorado’s largest natural body of water and is home to the tiny town of the same name
7.Connecticut – Harvey’s Beach
This popular Connecticut beach in Old Saybrook is a great place for fishing and even offers free parking.
8.Delaware – Rehoboth Beach
There’s plenty to do and see at this Atlantic Coast beach, including a bustling boardwalk and concert venue.
9.Florida – Sanibel Island
The beaches of Sanibel on Florida’s Gulf Coast are littered with shells from the waters, which make for fun trinkets to bring home.
10.Georgia – Tybee Island Beach
Tybee Island, 30 minutes from Savannah, has beautiful sandy beaches but is also a great place for kayaking or boating.
11.Hawaii – Oahu’s North Shore
If you’re looking to surf or watch surfers, this is the place. Oahu’s North Shore is known for its excellent surfing waves and even hosts surfing competitions.
12.Idaho – Lake Coeur d’Alene Beaches
Idaho’s natural lake spans over 100 miles of beach, so there’s plenty of room to spread out and enjoy the water.
13.Illinois – Lake Bluff Sunrise Beach
Use of the lake is free to park district residents and lifeguards are on duty during swimming hours, which end at 7 p.m.
14.Indiana – Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
This Indiana shoreline is part of Lake Michigan and is a lovely place for a peaceful walk along the water.
15.Iowa – Five Islands Lake
On the north end of Emmetsburg, Five Island Lake is a great place for camping, boating, fishing, or just sitting on the sand.
16.Kansas – Shawnee Mission Park
While, yes, this is the most visited park in Kansas, the highlight of it is the 53-acre dog off-leash area, so you can be sure to bring your furry friends along.
17.Kentucky – Cravens Bay
Cravens Bay, in the Land Between the Lakes Recreation Area, is a bit off the beaten path but will provide you a peaceful getaway if you’re willing to make the trek.
18.Lousiana – Fontainebleau State Park
On the shore of Lake Pontchartrain, Fontainebleau State Park has campsites and playgrounds in addition to a sprawling beach.
19.Maine – Old Orchard Beach
This beach on the southern part of Maine is highly trafficked by locals and tourists alike during the Summer season, so there’s no shortage of souvenirs to be found and delicious seafood to be eaten.
20.Maryland – Sandy Point State Park
Annapolis’s state park provides not just a beach but a large circuit of hiking trails to check out before taking a dip in the water.
21.Massachusetts – Good Harbor Beach
This tiny little beach in St. Ann has the perfect conditions for swimming.
22.Michigan – Grand Haven State Park
You can fish off the pier at this Lake Michigan beach.
23.Minnesota – Itasca State Park
Itasca is Minnesota’s oldest state park and includes more than 100 lakes.
24.Mississippi – Gulfport Beach
Miles of sandy beaches make up the shores of Gulfport, MS, and the waters are the perfect place for swimming or finding shells.
25.Missouri – Lewis and Clark State Park
This park on the Lewis and Clark Lake is a lovely place to take the family fishing or for a picnic.
26.Montana – Flathead Lake State Park
Flathead Lake provides spectacular views of the Mission Mountains and is an excellent place for fishing.
27.Nebraska – Lake McConaughy Beach
Nebraska’s Lake McConaughy has plenty of activities for the family to enjoy, from outdoorsy things to arts and crafts, all led by local naturalists.
28.Nevada – Zephyr Cove Beach
Zephyr Cove, on Lake Tahoe, is a great place for lake cruising and horseback riding.
29.New Hampshire – Hampton Beach
This small Atlantic coastal town is the perfect spot to rent a beach house to escape the hustle and bustle of your city life.
30.New Jersey – Cape May
Cape May is one of the most popular beaches on the Atlantic Coast, and this place is particularly known for the beautiful Victorian houses that line the water.
31.New Mexico – Santa Rosa Lake
This lake in Santa Rosa Lake State Park is great for fishing, and the state park offers lots of space for hiking.
32.New York – Montauk
This beach town outside New York City has a little bit of everything, from water sports to shopping, and provides a fun weekend getaway for New Yorkers.
33.North Carolina – Wrightsville Beach
Wrightsville Beach has plenty of coast, considering it’s composed of two islands separated by two bodies of water.
34.North Dakota – Lake Metigoshe
Lake Metigoshe is nestled in the Turtle Mountains, just shy of the Canadian border, and is a popular vacation spot for families.
35.Ohio – Maumee Bay State Park Beach
Maumee Bay State Park, on Lake Erie, is a beautiful vacation for anyone looking for adventure or relaxation as there’s a little bit of everything here.
36.Oklahoma – Keystone State Park
This park, on Keystone Lake, offers hiking, biking, boating, and more.
37.Oregon – Cannon Beach
Oregon’s quaint beach town is known for Haystack Rock, a 235-foot rock jutting out of the water that is sometimes accessible during low tide.
38.Pennsylvania – Presque Isle State Park Beach
Presque Isle State Park in Erie, PA, is popular among both locals and tourists alike and offers boating and relaxing beachfront.
39.Rhode Island – South Shore Beach
Little Compton’s South Shore Beach is a quiet stretch of beach along the Atlantic that is not highly trafficked and is a bit of a secret.
40.South Carolina – Hilton Head Island
Hilton Head’s well known for its beautiful beaches and golf courses, but this beach town has a little bit of something for everyone.
41.South Dakota – Custer State Park
In the Black Hills of South Dakota, you can find this state park that has a few small bodies of water to take a dip in to escape the warmth.
42.Tennessee – Cherokee Lake
Cherokee Lake has a few public parks that will give you boating access to the water.
43.Texas – South Padre Island
If you’re looking for a high-energy, fun beach vacation, South Padre Island is the place to be.
44.Utah – Pineview Reservoir Beach
In Utah’s Ogden Valley is the Pineview Reservoir, and these beaches are an excellent place for fishing and water sports.
45.Vermont – Lake Willoughby
Lake Willoughby is known for its clear and chilly waters, which makes it a great place for a swim if you find yourself getting too warm on a Summer day.
46.Virginia – Cape Charles Beach
Cape Charles Beach has free beach access and the water here is very shallow, making it a perfect place to bring the family.
47.Washington – Eagle Cove Beach
If you’re looking for some cliff-jumping fun, look no further than Washington’s Eagle Cove.
48.West Virginia – Cacapon Resort State Park
Cacapon Resort State Park is open year round and has a lot of lake activities and cabins on site you can stay in
49.Wisconsin – Kohler-Andrae State Park
Just south of Sheboygan, you can find Kohler-Andrae State Park, which has over two miles of beaches along Lake Michigan.
50.Wyoming – Colter Bay
With breathtaking views of the Grand Tetons, Colter Bay is any adventure-lover’s perfect getaway, with not only beautiful beaches but trails for hiking and calm waters for boating.