There's little doubt that Florida is, at least in part, known for its beaches. You can find beaches up and down the sunshine state. And Florida's beaches welcome over 19 million visitors per year, having a high economic impact.
Of course, some are more popular than others. And the travel website TripAdvisor has recently attempted to name the Top 25 Beaches in the United States. Perhaps not surprisingly, plenty of Florida beaches showed up on the list. They will be listed below.
What Were the Criteria?: The beaches were listed as part of the "Traveler's Choice" program, which identifies top travel destinations based on the quality and quantity of user reviews.
It is important to note that TripAdvisor is a review website. Reviews are not written by professional critics or travelers, but by actual people who have visited the destination and shared their reviews.
How Did Florida Fare?: Florida did well. Out of 25 spots, Florida Beaches scored 8 spots. Although Florida did not earn the top spot (that honor went to Hawaii,) Florida did take the second spot, as follows:
Here are the Florida beaches that made the cut:
Siesta Key, at Number 2: This beach near Sarasota is a frequent winner in beach polls. It's previously been Dr. Beach's top pick and has previously been ranked number one by TripAdvisor. It's best loved for its 99% quartz sand, which is powdery, white, and cool to the touch.
Reviewers mentioned the sand repeatedly, liked the sloping between the beach and the water, and the ability to wade out quite far into the water and still be only knee-high. (Siesta Key is pictured at the top of this article.)
Henderson Beach State Park, at Number 6: This state park in Destin has a lovely beach and 6,000 feet of shoreline. The water in the panhandle beaches tends to have a lovely emerald green tint. Reviewers enjoyed the shelling, the hiking trail, and the fact that the beach was non-crowded at times.
St. Augustine Beach, at Number 13: TripAdvisor praised the fact that visitors can park right on the beach. The beach is home to a park, a fishing pier, and seaside restaurants. Reviewers like the width of the beach and the cleanliness.
St Pete Beach, at Number 14: TripAdvisor called this "the most perfect place to watch the sunset over the ocean." This beach was TripAdvisor's number-one pick in 2021. It offers a beautiful view of the Gulf of Mexico and excellent shelling. Reviewers praised the inexpensive parking, the white sand, and the accessibility to restaurants.
Panama City Beach, at Number 18: Like Henderson Beach, this option is located in Florida's panhandle. This beach is known as "the spring break capital of the world" and for the dolphins in its waters. However, it also caters to families with attractions such as Shipwreck Island Waterpark. Reviewers praised the calm, clear waters, and the white sands.
Pensacola Beach, at Number 20: We're still in the panhandle where TripAdvisor praised the "miles and miles of beaches." Because it goes on for so far, reviewers say that there is plenty of beach for everyone and ample parking. They also rave about the clear, mild waters and the powdery, sloping beach.
Sombrero Beach, at Number 22: This beach, located in the Keys' Marathon, isn't as well known as some of the others. It offers free parking, and the ability to bring your dog. There are volleyball courts and a playground as well. Reviewers note that this beach is clean, and not terribly crowded.
Clearwater Beach, at Number 23: This beach is in central Florida, relatively close to St. Pete Beach. Clearwater Beach is known as a great beach for families because of the playground, the pirate cruise, and the fact that the water is gentle and shallow. Reviewers praised the cleanliness of the beach, the sunset, and the shelling.
The Rest of the List: Having gone over the Florida picks, we can look at the list in its entirety, as follows:
1. Kaanapali Beach, Lahaina, Hawaii
2. Siesta Beach, Siesta Key, Florida
3. Driftwood Beach, Jekyll Island, Georgia
4. Hanalei Beach, Hanalei, Hawaii
5. Ho'okipa Beach Park, Paia, Hawaii
6. Henderson Beach State Park, Destin, Florida
7. Cannon Beach, Cannon Beach, Oregon
8. Coronado Beach, Coronado, California
9. Ogunquit Beach, Ogunquit, Maine
10. La Jolla Cove, La Jolla, California
11. Cape May Beach, Cape May, New Jersey
12. Coligny Beach, Hilton Head, South Carolina
13. St. Augustine Beach, Saint Augustine Beach, Florida
14. St. Pete Beach, St. Pete Beach, Florida
15. Lanikai Beach, Kailua, Hawaii
16. Poipu Beach Park, Poipu, Hawaii
17. Napili Beach, Lahaina, Hawaii
18. Panama City Beach, Panama City Beach, Florida
19. Ocean City Beach, Ocean City, Maryland
20. Pensacola Beach, Pensacola Beach, Florida
21. Kailua Beach Park, Kailua, Hawaii
22. Sombrero Beach, Marathon, Florida
23. Clearwater Beach, Clearwater, Florida
24. Hapuna Beach State Recreation Area, Puako, Hawaii
25. Santa Monica State Beach, Santa Monica, California
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