You can have a great summer beach trip if you take the time to research potential destinations in advance. The coastal location that you choose should have the right attributes to give you fun and relaxation.
• California beaches can give you everything from brightly coloured tide pools to bonfires by the bay. • If you love beautiful scenery, take a trip to Hawaii for enormous ocean waves and cliffs. • The U.S. eastern shores give you fantastic mid-Atlantic warm-water beaches. • The Caribbean is all about white-sand beaches and clear, turquoise ocean water.
When it’s time to unwind and enjoy yourself, nothing lightens your mood like a glistening seascape. Whether you’re on the East Coast of the United States or an exotic island in the Caribbean, you can feel the gentle ocean breezes. Every coastal community has its own distinct characteristics. Whether you want a secluded hideaway or a hot spot, check out these stunning beach towns.
The California Shore
At Muir Beach near San Francisco, California, you can enjoy all the beauty of the Pacific Ocean while warming yourself by a fire pit. Bring along your s’mores ingredients and walking shoes; hiking trails take you past wetlands and ponds where you can catch a glimpse of many bird species.
You can also view the beach from a high point at the Muir Beach Overlook. Plenty of cottages and inns are available for enthusiastic sightseers in the area. Although Muir Beach is near a forest, you can still find plenty of eateries; your choices range from upscale Italian and seafood restaurants to burgers and tacos.
The Wonders of Hawaii
All the shorelines in Hawaii are gorgeous, but few outrank Ka’anapali Beach on Maui. It sits on the west side of the island and has excellent places for surfing, snorkeling and even scuba diving. With 6- to 8-foot waves, this spot draws both new and experienced surfers. If you fly to Maui, you can also go on a whale watching expedition.
If boating is your passion, look no further than Ka’anapali Beach; you can go sailing, rent kayaks or board a catamaran. The north side of the beach has Black Rock, the perfect site for snorkeling. If you’re there at sunset, then you’ll see a cliff diver do a daring swan dive just as King Kahekili did in days gone by.
When you’re ready to retire from the beach for the day, you have plenty of restaurants and bars to visit in nearby Lahaina.
Assateague and Chincoteague
Off the coasts of Virginia and Maryland lie two islands that offer both attractions and an unspoiled setting. Chincoteague is the place to go for go-karts and arcades; Assateague has very pristine beaches and wild ponies. By taking Maddox Boulevard on Chincoteague Island, you can get easy access to Assateague Island and its wildlife refuge.
The hotels and restaurants are on Chincoteague Island. Fly to Ocean City, Maryland if you’d like to spend a day or two in a big resort town. You can have the serenity of a remote location and the excitement of boardwalk activities all in one delightful vacation.
St. Martin-St. Maarten
You can find plenty of islands to visit in the Caribbean, but flying to St. Martin-St. Maarten should be near the top of your list. In addition to turquoise ocean water, white sandy shores and limestone hills, this island has two distinct cultures thriving side-by-side. You can party on the French side beaches and then head to the Dutch side for tranquility.
Spend a day on a mountain at Pic du Paradis. The beach at Friar’s Bay is a favourite for families; it has Happy Bay nearby for snorkeling. Several clothing-optional beaches can be found on the island as well; the most popular one is Orient Bay on the eastern coast.
You’ll have no problem finding accommodations and places to eat on the island. On the French side, try the Grand Case area for exquisite dining.