Dr. Beach Reveals Top 10 Best Beaches in the US for 2018

Hawaii's the tops of Dr. Beach's Top 10 Beaches list in 2018, taking the number one spot and appearing twice on the list. Florida and North Carolina also had two entries on the annual list that ranks major public recreational beaches in the coastal U.S. states. But the "beautiful crescent-shaped, white sand beach" in Kapalua Bay on the Hawaiian island of Maui sits atop the list this year.

11 photos
Kiawah Island Golf Resort via AP
This undated photo provided by the Kiawah Island Golf Resort shows sunrise as seen from Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Island, South Carolina. Beachwalker is No. 10 on the list of best beaches for the summer of 2018 compiled by Stephen Leatherman, also known as Dr. Beach, a professor at Florida International University.
Sophie Boss/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images, File
Coronado Beach is the toast of Southern California; it is a veritable oasis by the sea that is hundreds of yards wide. With its subtropical vegetation, unique Mediterranean climate, and fine sparkling sand, beach-goers flock to this beach for great ship-watching and the summer’s warm and mild surf. The local landmark, Hotel del Coronado, was built over a hundred years ago, offering spectacular architecture and Old World elegance. Kings, sheiks, actors, and actresses have stayed at Hotel del Coronado, where food and drinks are served on the beach to all beachgoers.
Kirk Lee Aeder/www.kirkaederphoto.com via AP
This undated photo provided by Kirk Lee Aeder shows Hapuna Beach in Hawaii. This white coral sand beach resides in a landscape dominated by black lava flows. During the summer months, Hapuna is a perfect place to swim, snorkel or scuba dive in the crystal clean waters, but big waves during the winter can generate powerful rip currents. Fortunately, there are well-trained lifeguards at this state park.
Ryan K. Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images, File
This Sept. 13, 2008, file photo shows visitors relax along the shore at Caladesi Island State Park, Florida. Caladesi is reached by pedestrian ferry boat, private boats or a long walk north from Clearwater Beach – the inlet is closed so Caladesi is no longer a true island, but still a great getaway. The white beach is composed of crystalline quartz sand which is soft and cushy at the water’s edge, inviting one to take a dip in the sparkling clear waters.
Joshua Corsa/AP, File
This 2003, file photo, shows the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and the village of Buxton, N.C. Lighthouse Beach boasts of the best surfing on the U.S. East Coast because of the large shoals offshore that focus wave energy on this beach where the Cape Hatteras Light once stood. The beach is also good for swimming because lifeguards are on duty, albeit families with small children might prefer at more gentle surf. The Outer Banks are steeped in history with the Wright Brothers making history more than a century ago with the first flight of an airplane. This coast is very dynamic and oftentimes there is a long spit just south of Lighthouse beach which is above water during low tide.
Bill Greene/The Boston Globe via Getty Images, File
This 2011 file photo shows Coast Guard Beach at the Cape Cod National Seashore in Massachusetts. Coast Guard Beach, accessible by bicycle or shuttle bus from the Salt Pond Visitor’s Center, was formed where a sand spit attached to the glacial cliffs. The sand is fairly coarse so the beach slopes steeply into the water. The picturesque old Coast Guard station still sits atop the glacial bluffs, allowing for a spectacular view down upon the Nauset Spit barrier system and bay. During the summer, beach-goers take quick, refreshing dips in the ocean as water temperatures only reach 60-70 degrees.
Kathy Willens/AP, File
This May 13, 2010, file photo, shows Coopers Beach in Southampton, N.Y. Coopers Beach is located on the south shore of Long Island, New York, shielded from the cold Labrador currents in the beautiful village of Southampton. As the first “Gold Coast” in the country, Coopers Beach is hundreds of yards wide, made of grainy white quartz sand. The beach is backed by large sand dunes covered by American beach grass interspersed with large and extravagant mansions. Some of the best beach access in the Hamptons exists on Coopers Beach, and a snack bar serving lunch and drinks can be found here as well.
David Neff/Corbis via Getty Images
This undated photo provided by Visit South Walton shows Grayton Beach on Florida's Panhandle on the Gulf Coast. This beach boasts of its sugar-white sand and emerald green water where development has been restrained so big sand dunes still dominate the landscape. At the same time, all the amenities of great restaurants and accommodations are close by in the old town of Grayton Beach or Seaside. Many people choose to camp in this wonderful state park that also features tidal lakes and freshwater ponds.
Bill Russ/NC Department of Commerce via AP
This undated photo provided by VisitNC.com shows a boy on the beach at Ocracoke on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Ocracoke, once the home of Blackbeard the pirate, is still a special place—it is my favorite getaway beach. Here you will find some of the wildest beaches in the country. Big surf dominates in late summer so families with children may want to come earlier in the year. Don’t expect to play golf or stay at the Ritz; the main pursuits are swimming and beachcombing.
Tor Johnson/Hawaii Tourism Authority via AP
This undated photo provided by the Hawaii Tourism Authority shows a view of the Kapalua coastline in Maui, Hawaii. Kapalua is a perfect beach for swimming and snorkeling in the clear, azure waters that are protected by two headlands formed long ago by lava flows into the sea. This beautiful crescent-shaped, white sand beach is bounded by these rocky anchors where good restaurants can be found. The fine coral sand beach slopes gradually into the deeper water where the rocky bottom is punctuated with corals that attract vividly-colored tropical fish.
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