When the topic of conversation is ocean vacations, most of us have stories of our best or most memorable beach getaways. What makes them our favorites? Often it is a combination of factors that includes the people we enjoyed that holiday with, the good weather, the food, the activities, and more.
Experts would also say that the best beach vacations are also about:
- Amenities at the accommodation
- The quality of the beach
- Water quality
- Time of year
- Number of fellow beachgoers
That is a lot to balance into an equation, but if you are eager to book one of the best beach vacations in the US, it will pay to consider as many of these factors as possible.
In the meantime, we’ve done a bit of the legwork and crafted a list of suggestions for some of the very best beach vacations in the US for the coming summer. In our list, we are going to look mostly at the top beach destinations in the USA, some of the best beach vacation rentals in the USA, and lots of reasons each location will make a great choice for a solo traveler, couples, or groups of families and friends.
The East Coast
When we speak about the best beach vacations in the US, we might automatically turn our attention southward towards places like Florida. And while that state does make a prominent showing in our list of the best beach vacations in the US, we’d encourage you to also think about a state just a bit farther north…North Carolina, in fact.
North Carolina is a remarkable spot, and while it rates as offering some of the best beach vacations in the US, it also shares a border with Tennessee and contains some of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. That means a longer holiday might begin in the scenic mountains and yet end up as one of the best beach vacations, ever.
What makes the state such a great choice for a beach break? The Outer Banks area of the state has been, for decades, a preferred destination for many who enjoy gorgeous beaches, great hiking and watersports, amazing scenery, lighthouses, good food, and an array of excellent accommodations right along the sands.
And then, there is always the endless array of beaches, fun, and memories to be had with a vacation in Florida. It does not matter if you are not a big fan of amusement parks, such as those in the incredibly popular Orlando area, because there are excellent options amenities-rich accommodations that are themselves destinations. While you can find a VRBO beach option, there are many affordable villas that include private pool areas, beaches, outdoor and alfresco spaces large enough for groups, and more.
These qualify as some of the best beach vacations in the US because they are all-inclusive without being resorts. You get a home-like and private setting with a full-sized kitchen, bedrooms with private baths, and more. This can help keep costs under control, while also boosting the amount of interaction you have with family and friends.
The West Coast
Naturally, if you head west and think about the best ocean vacations in the US, your thoughts head to one of the best beach states in the USA – California. After all, it is a hugely popular location for things like surfing, sailing, and watersports. It is also home to a long list of urban areas that boast waterfront boardwalks and areas designed for hours of beachfront fun.
While many of us might think immediately of Los Angeles when picturing a holiday destination in California, there is also San Diego. With much finer weather and as many activities as Orlando (if amusement parks ARE a big part of your vacation goals), it is perfect for families and groups. It too is home to a wonderful range of villas and private homes that will make San Diego one of your favorite and best beach vacation destinations in the US.
Many people don’t automatically send their thoughts far west into the Pacific when thinking about beach vacations in the US, but that is where some of the best beach vacations in the USA are found. Where? The shores of Hawaii’s different islands, of course!
If you have yet to pay a visit to the Hawaiian Island chain, it must figure prominently in your travel plans. It has become a very affordable destination and may be even more so as airfares have dipped sharply and will remain lower than normal. That means the flight is no longer an obstacle!
There are several major islands popular with travelers, and they include the Big Island of Hawaii, Maui, Oahu, and Kauai. The Big Island, also called Hawaii, is the youngest and largest. It sits far south and is still being formed through active volcanoes on the island. It has amazing surfing and beachfronts, while Kauai far to the north is home to dramatic coastlines and wonderful beaches.
All of the islands have affordable and luxurious accommodations sized for singles to large groups and can be all about the best beach vacation, ever.
If you want a tropical getaway, but with a bit of a shorter journey, the Caribbean has much to offer in the way of beach vacations. Many islands are dotted with wonderful luxury rentals that sit on the sands or in the lush, verdant hills that cover many of them. Places like St Barts or St Kitts, Turks & Caicos, St Lucia, and gorgeous Barbados are all top-rated beach destinations throughout the world.
What is your idea of the ideal or best beach vacation? No matter what activities, amenities, or surroundings you have in mind, the list above is sure to have the ideal option. Whether you are looking for a cool-weather getaway or a summertime experience with family and friends, you have lots of options. Start with a list of the features that matter most and you’re sure to enjoy an unforgettable beach vacation soon.