Dr. Beach selects 2017’s 10 best beaches in the U.S. One is in California

Siesta Beach on Siesta Key in Sarasota, Fla.
Siesta Beach on Siesta Key in Sarasota, Fla.
(Chris O’Meara / Associated Press)

Beach expert Dr. Beach selected Siesta Beach in Sarasota, Fla., as America’s best beach in 2017. Only one California site made it into the top 10: Coronado Beach in San Diego.

Every year, Dr. Beach, a.k.a. Stephen P. Leatherman, professor and director of the Laboratory for Coastal Research at Florida International University in Miami, seeks out beaches with the softest sand, cleanest shores, clearest water, best environmental records, safest shores and other criteria.

For the record:

3:58 a.m. May 18, 2022An earlier version of this article stated that Hapuna Beach held the No. 1 spot on last year’s list. Hanauma Bay in Oahu was No. 1 in 2016.

Siesta Beach has “the finest, whitest sand in the world,” according to the Dr. Beach website. Actually it’s powdered quartz that has been deposited on the Siesta Key beach on Florida’s gulf side.

It last held the No. 1 spot in 2011 and came in at No. 2 in 2016.

Coronado Beach dropped from No. 7 last year to No. 9 this year. The website describes the beach fronting the Hotel del Coronado as the “toast of Southern California; it is a veritable oasis by the sea …”


Here’s Dr. Beach’s 2017 list of top 10 beaches:

1. Siesta Beach

Location: Sarasota, Fla.

2. Kapalua Bay Beach

Location: Maui, Hawaii

Kapalua Bay Beach
(Tor Johnson / Hawaii Tourism Authority / Associated Press)

3. Ocracoke Lifeguarded Beach

Location: Outer Banks, N.C.

4. Grayton Beach State Park

Location: Florida Panhandle

Grayton Beach
(David Bailey Photography / Associated Press)

5. Coopers Beach

Location: Near Southampton, N.Y.

Coopers Beach in the Hamptons
(Kathy Willens / Associated Press)

6. Coast Guard Beach

Location: Cape Cod National Seashore in Eastham, Mass.

Coast Guard Beach
(Margo Tabb / Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce)

7. Caladesi Island State Park

Location: Dunedin/Clearwater, Fla.

8. Hapuna Beach State Park

Location: On the island of Hawaii

Hapuna Beach
(Kirk Lee Aeder / Associated Press)

9. Coronado Beach

Location: San Diego, California

Coronado Beach in San Diego, with a sand castle and the Hotel del Coronado.
(Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times)

10. Beachwalker State Park

Location: Kiawah Island, S.C.

Sunrise from Beachwalker Park on Kiawah Island.
(Kiawah Island Golf Resort / Associated Press)

Twitter: @latimestravel


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