I grew up just steps away from a black sand beach on the Big Island of Hawaii. Needless to say, there are very few Memorial Day holidays that I have not spent soaking up the sun on a stretch of sand somewhere in the world.
Old habits die hard.
Whereas I hold the beaches of Hawaii near to my heart, I have spent many summers sprawled out on other sandy spots that you too might consider exploring in the coming months:
The Hamptons: If you can’t escape the East Coast this summer, then at least get your tan on somewhere besides Central Park. New York’s ritzy Hamptons is known for its beautiful beaches and lively nightlife. The area also boasts top-rated restaurants and charming boutiques that will suck your wallet dry.
Panama City: You can’t write a blog about beaches without mentioning at least one Florida hot spot. Panama City is among the most popular beaches in the entire country thanks to its sugar soft white sand and emerald green waters. Another plus for this 27-mile stretch of summer fun are the daily visits from loggerhead turtles that come ashore to lay eggs from May to October.
Michigan: I currently reside in Wisconsin, so I would be remiss not to include at least one beach in the region. Among my favorites is the shoreline of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The family-friendly vacation destination boasts 1700 miles of shoreline along three of the Great Lakes. While the sand and surf are a far cry from Hawaii’s, the U.P.’s beaches are great spots for canoeing, fishing and camping.
Coronado Beach: In 2002 I took my first trip to Coronado Island near San Diego and I haven’t forgotten it since. The West Coast beach offers incredible views of the southern California city, but its secluded location is what I found most appealing. You need to drive across the San Diego Bay Bridge or hop on a ferry to get there. Once you hit the sand, you are left to enjoy the peace and tranquility of this pristine beach.