The Best Beaches in the United States

Put down your passport and forget traveling to far-flung tropical destinations in search of beautiful beaches. Some of the most stunning white sand paradise settings can be found right in the United States — meaning you don’t need to waste money and energy on international travel. (Have you seen those customs lines lately?)

Every year, U.S. News ranks United States beaches based on important criteria, such as smooth white sands, peaceful water that’s made for wading, and fun attractions the whole family can enjoy. So pack up the cooler and a beach chair, sit back, and enjoy the top 15 beach destinations in the country for 2017.

15. Key West, Florida

Pier at the beach in Key West

Key West is all about water activities. | iStock.com/ventdusud

The Florida Keys attract year-round visitors seeking reliably gorgeous weather and white sand beaches that rival the Caribbean. Key West is the southernmost point in the continental U.S. (and marked by a famous buoy). Warm waters, a relaxed atmosphere, and friendly locals known as “Conchs” will make your vacation the exact kind of unplugged, laid-back time you’ve been seeking.

While you’re there, check out a host of typical water-based activities, such as sailing, snorkeling, kayaking, beach-combing, and more. Key West is also home to a few museums. And tourists can enjoy their fill of shopping and dining on the popular Duval Street.

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