Hey everyone, we are sure you have heard of the best beaches you can find in the United States, though there are quite a few under the radar beaches that just aren’t that famous, though are awesome!
From the East Coast to the West Coast, beaches across the United States are getting their fair share of visitors this summer. Yet some tend to get overshadowed by others. For those seeking to find their patch of sand, or get away from the crowds, here are a few under the radar – but still accessible – beaches to visit that are very, very nice.
Torrance Beach, California
California has many beaches to see, but this SoCal coastal beach is especially great for cyclists. This 1.5-mile long beach is the starting point for a bike path called “The Strand” leading to and from Will Rogers State Beach in Pacific Palisades. Going one way, it’s a 22-mile ride. If your style of cycling is more of a slow pace, the beach scene offers other enticements: nice views of Palos Verdes, being near Riviera Village, a shopping area and a chance to explore the city of Torrance.
Kure Beach, North Carolina
In North Carolina, Kure Beach is a sandy wonder with a big impact. It has the unique distinction of being the location of what was the largest land-sea battle during the American Civil War. What’s now called Fort Fisher State Historic Site was formerly the site of a Confederate fort that protected the trading routes of the port of Wilmington. At this historical landmark, visitors can go on a quarter-mile walking loop and see a replica of a cannon and underground bunkers. Plus, there’s a summer long, open-air beach market at the beach’s front park and pavilion.
Owen Beach, Washington
Washington State has its small-town beaches – like La Push, Long Beach and Ocean Shores – but it might be good to take a drive to Pierce County. A short drive from downtown Tacoma, Owen Beach has good opportunities for picnicking, scenic photo taking, kayaking and a good bit of walking. The driftwood-covered waterfront is close to a series of trails – some foot traffic only and others also extending to include runners and cyclists – that weave throughout Point Defiance Park.
Goose Rocks Beach, Maine
In Kennebunkport, Maine, this three-mile stretch of white sand beach is so quiet you’ll feel like you need to be on a guest list to visit. Offering gentle surf and plenty of room to spread out, this is an ideal spot to relax along the coast of Maine. Plus, there are great views of the Goose Rocks and Timber Island, and it’s located in a protected bay, between nearby Cape Porpoise and Biddeford’s Fortune’s Rocks. Note: parking is limited; a sticker is required. Or you can get beach access through a trolley service from some nearby resorts.
Shell Island, Florida
Located in Florida’s Panama Beach City, Shell Island is an uninhabited, seven-mile peninsula situated between the Gulf of Mexico and St. Andrews Bay. The sand is white, and the water is a beautiful shade of emerald green, plus there are some woodsy elements like coastal scrub forest nearby. Quite a mix of wildlife can also be spotted here – ranging from shorebirds to turtles – but always remember to keep a respectful distance. Plus take your trash back with you; remember to leave no trace! As for getting to Shell Island, it’s mainly accessible by boat or ferry, or a shuttle service from nearby St. Andrews State Park.
Sandbridge Beach, Virginia
Virginia Beach can be pretty overpopulated during summertime, but this more secluded beach takes visitors away from that scene. Based 15 miles from Virginia Beach’s resort area, this hideaway is including five miles of sand dunes and sea oats. Outdoor recreation aficionados will also be content with the beach’s connection to the both equally scenic Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge and False Cape State Park.
Carova Beach, North Carolina
It doesn’t get much more secluded than North Carolina’s Carova Beach. Tucked away in the Outer Banks, the beach is only accessible by boat or with four-wheel drive, as the area does not have paved roads. Visitors can enjoy 11 miles of tranquil shoreline and hunt for shells on pristine stretches of sand. If you’re lucky, you might catch a glimpse of wild mustangs; the horses roam freely by the ocean and through Carova’s small residential neighborhoods.
Roque Bluffs, Maine
Rustic scenery and sprawling landscapes make Roque Bluffs one of the best little-known beach destinations. Visitors can explore 274 acres of coastal scenery, including a picturesque, half-mile pebbled beach. Take a dip in Simpson Pond, a popular watering hole, or hike along the beach’s rocky cliffs. Nature lovers will enjoy the area’s diverse wildlife, as the beach is home to a variety of birds and plant species.
Enderts Beach, California
For ultimate seclusion, take a trip to Enderts Beach. Hidden away in Redwood National Park, the beach features 37 miles of coastline surrounded by towering, 350-foot evergreen trees. Enderts is not the most photogenic beach; lost driftwood and tidal marshes create a decidedly rustic atmosphere. But dramatic coastlines and peaceful surroundings give the area an appeal all its own. Hike to the 500-foot overlook off Enderts Beach Trail for unparalleled views of the forest and ocean or settle down near the coast with an afternoon picnic.
Folly Beach, South Carolina
Also known as Lowcountry’s summer playground, Folly Beach offers a variety of water sports and attractions. Swimmers and surfers can hang ten at Folly’s Washout, and visitors can take in ocean views from the beach’s popular pier. The town is also home to delicious seafood, and beachgoers can enjoy the day’s catch at restaurants overlooking the water.
Second Beach, Washington
Dramatic bluffs and emerald green headlands are just a few of the things you’ll find at Washington’s Second Beach. Second is one of a triumvirate of Olympic Coast gems, with First and Third Beaches nearby. Visitors can only access the beach via a hiking trail, but the journey is worth the effort. Beachgoers will catch a glimpse of offshore sea stacks through towering spruce trees and hear the waves crashing against the shore.
Wildcat Beach, California
The active set gravitates toward California’s Wildcat Beach. The area is best known for its hiking and biking trails, and visitors can only access the water by trekking 5 miles to the coast. On the way, beachgoers will come across peaceful stretches of cocoa sand and sparkling tide falls nestled among towering cliffs. Travel 1 mile farther south of the trailhead to take in the spectacular beauty of Alamere, one of the beach’s most breathtaking falls.
Awahua Beach, Hawaii
Few beaches top Hawaii’s Awahua in terms of sheer beauty and rich natural history. The isolated stretch of sand was originally a colony for lepers and is still less developed than the state’s other islands. Visitors can reach the picturesque coastline via a hiking trail or take in breathtaking views of the cliffs and water from a public lookout next to the trailhead.
Cumberland Island, Georgia
Georgia’s Cumberland Island has it all. The 18-mile beach features unspoiled marshes, dunes, and forests that are largely untouched by civilization or time. Beachgoers can stroll under dense canopies of live oaks or watch wild horses roam across pristine beaches. The public can only access the island via ferry, making it one of the state’s most secluded getaways.
Grayton Beach State Park, Florida
This SP has a lot of reasons to be the most popular State Park in the state of Florida. There is absolutely no activity that you can’t indulge in here. You can swim, canoe, hike, fish, and camp. Camping facilities range from RVs to cabins roughly accommodating a group of 6. Ample trees between the sites give you all the seclusion you want.
Bowman’s Beach, Florida
Magical sunsets, an abundance of shells, and a plethora of birds are pleasures that await you at Sanibel’s Bowman’s Beach. Maintained in its natural state, this beach has no hotels or houses nearby. It offers a perfect environment for relaxing in the company of calm waters and surreal backdrops. You need to take a walk from the parking area to reach the beach. There may be a crowd during seasons, but compared to other beaches in Sanibel, Bowman is still what you’d call an “isolated” escape.
Topsail Hill Preserve, Florida
Clean sands, majestic dunes, and a peaceful environment is what you’ll get while unpacking at Topsail Hill Preserve State Park. The sands stretch for more than 3 miles, offering tourists ample space to relax and bask in the sun. Furnished bungalows at the park allow you to stay for a couple of days to enjoy this mesmerizing jewel in northwestern Florida. You can fish, swim, hike, bird-watch, and sunbathe.
Beacon’s Beach, Leucadia, San Diego County, California
North County San Diego is where the laidback SoCal lifestyle has been refined to an art. A quintessential beach town, Leucadia features stretches of sand where you can unplug and enjoy the surf and sand a world away from urban San Diego’s more crowded beaches. Access here is via three sets of public stairs that descend steep, seaside cliffs (there are no services or lifeguards here). Drive north along Neptune Avenue and park in the small lot at the end of Leucadia Boulevard to get to Beacon’s Beach or continue north to other beaches like Stone Steps and Grandview.
San Clemente State Beach, San Clemente, Orange County. California
Live the OC dream at San Clemente State Beach where a mile-long beach provides plenty of room for you to find your own little slice of paradise. The beach area near the parking lot at the end of Avenida Calafia can get crowded but walk south toward the famous Trestles surf spot and you’ll be rewarded with acres of empty sand where you can stretch out between the tawny sandstone cliffs and blue-green swells.
Westward Beach, Malibu, Los Angeles County, California
Los Angeles isn’t all glitz and glam. It has its wet and wild side, too, as in the chance to spot dolphins and whales cruising right offshore in front of north Malibu’s Point Dume State Beach. Adjacent Westward Beach is the place to for come sand, sea and solitude (especially on weekdays), or hike up Point Dume for jaw-dropping views of Santa Monica Bay, Catalina Island, and if you’re lucky, a few spouting whales.
Baker Beach, San Francisco, California
Maybe lolling on a beach isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you think of San Francisco. So, let us introduce you to Baker Beach, a mile-long stretch of sand that offers amenities like picnic tables, grills and access to hiking. Besides the chance to hang out on the beach in SF, your next favorite thing about Baker Beach will no doubt be the epic #OMG view of the bay and Golden Gate Bridge that is going to make you a social-media star.
Tennessee Cove, Marin County, California
Just over the San Francisco Bay Bridge you’ll find the perfect beach to spoil your inner escape artist. Located in lovely Tennessee Valley, the cove is an easy 3.7-mile round-trip hike through the Marin Headlands, so expect spectacular views along the trail. You’ll descend through a coastal chaparral valley (especially awesome during spring wildflower season) to a wide, welcoming beach that features a natural lagoon and rock formations. As with most beaches near urban areas, weekdays are best. But whenever you visit, Tennessee Beach is a beautiful spot for a picnic or just curling up on a sandy beach and losing yourself in that summer read.
Secret Beach, Kauai, Hawaii
Though its real name is Kauapea, this isolated, half-mile stretch of sand is better known among locals as Secret Beach. The name fits: Nestled between Kalihiwai Bay and Kilauea Point, it’s located far off the tourist track and accessible only by a rocky, unmarked trail. Lava rocks border the beach on both sides and jutting red cliffs cloaked by lush vegetation and cascading waterfalls form a dramatic backdrop. Be warned: Though public nudity is illegal in Hawaii; the far east side of the beach is unofficially clothing-optional.
Waipio Valley Beach, Big Island
Of all the beaches on the Big Island, the unspoiled crescent of black sand at the base of Waipio Valley is easily the most secluded: It’s sheltered by 2,000-foot cliffs, and it’s a grueling three-mile hike down. But don’t be dissuaded, as you’ll be rewarded handsomely for your efforts with superfine, inky sand, and calm, clear turquoise water. Look to the east, and you’ll spot the spectacular Kaluahine Waterfall (pictured) and the larger Waiulili Falls, which are accessible via a rocky trail along the surf. Due to its remote location, you’ll likely have this secret paradise all to yourself.
Mākua Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
Tucked away on Oahu’s windswept Waianae coast—far from the crowds of Waikiki—you’ll find Mākua Beach, a scenic, half-mile stretch of golden sand backed by the Waianae Mountains and the lush, uninhabited Mākua Valley. Thanks to its seclusion, the beach is almost always empty, especially outside of weekends, so you can sunbathe and swim in total peace. But be warned: Unlike other beaches in Oahu, Mākua is not protected by an offshore reef and there’s no lifeguard onsite, so stay close to the shore (or better yet, stick to the relaxing tide pools at either end of the beach).
Kawakiu Beach, Molokai, Hawaii
You could argue that the island of Molokai itself is hidden in plain sight—sandwiched between Hawaii’s two most popular islands—and that all its beaches are blissfully tranquil. But what if its total seclusion you’re after? Drive north to Paniolo Hale, park off Kaluakoi Road, and then hike for 45 minutes down to Kawakiu, Molokai’s northernmost beach. Sheltered by leafy kiawe trees, this perfect crescent of white sand and blindingly blue water is paradise at its very finest.
Makalawena Beach, Big Island
On the Big Island’s sleepy North Kona coast, Makalawena Beach—or “Maks,” as the locals call it—is a string of white-sand coves lapped by brilliant, turquoise-blue water. You’ll have to hike for half an hour over lava rock to get there, but it’s worth the trek: It’s always deserted, there are lots of shady trees to laze beneath, and there’s a beautiful coral reef just a few feet offshore that’s perfect for snorkeling. Added bonus: Hawaiian green sea turtles love to visit Makalawena, so keep your eyes peeled.
Polihua Beach, Lanai, Hawaii
Largely overlooked by tourists in favor of Oahu, Maui, and Kauai, the island of Lanai feels like a secret paradise filled with undeveloped beaches and desert-like landscapes. Polihua Beach feels especially remote, located on Lanai’s wild, northwestern coast and accessible only via four-wheel drive. (Because of its wildness, it’s also not somewhere you should try swimming.) The two-mile sandbar used to be the nesting ground of Hawaiian green sea turtles; they’ve since moved to islands further north, but you’ll likely spot migrating humpback whales between December and April.
Polihale Beach, Kauai
Located at the end of a long, unpaved dirt road off Kaumuali’i Highway, Polihale Beach is often overlooked in favor of the more accessible beaches at Poipu and Kalapaki. It’s a shame; sprawled over 17 miles, it’s the longest stretch of beach in Hawaii, and arguably one of the most beautiful, backed by 100-foot sand dunes and framed by the Na Pali cliffs. From its silvery sands, you can even spot the “forbidden” Hawaiian island of Niihau.
As you can see, there are plenty of under the radar beaches that are awesome! Give them a try