October 12, 2023 | Sammy Tran

Sun, Sand, And Surf: The 10 Best Hidden Beaches In The United States


The 10 Best Hidden Beaches In The United States

Beach and beach selfie split image

Ah, the beach! There's nothing quite like the symphony of crashing waves, the tang of salty sea air, and the sun-kissed warmth on your skin. 

While many flock to famous seashores each year, the U.S. is home to several lesser-known gems where you can escape the crowds and enjoy some serene seaside solitude. 

The Magic Of Unspoiled Beaches

Lovers Beach, NevisAdobe

The charm of these secluded beaches isn't just about their pristine condition; it's also the promise of discovery. The allure of uncovering a secret spot, of being one of the few to leave footprints on the sand or to capture the perfect sunset without a crowd in sight, is a significant part of their appeal.

Why Hidden Beaches Are Worth The Journey

Man sleeping  on beachwavebreakmedia, Shutterstock

  1. Exclusivity and Tranquility: Hidden beaches are often far from the madding crowd, allowing visitors a sense of privacy and a break from the noise of busier beaches.

  2. Natural Beauty: Less foot traffic means less litter, pollution, and fewer alterations to the landscape, keeping these hidden beaches in their near-natural state.

  3. Unique Experiences: While famous beaches may offer several amenities and attractions, hidden beaches often boast unique experiences, whether it's watching wild horses at Carova Beach or jade hunting at Sand Dollar Beach.

  4. Wildlife Watching: Fewer visitors typically mean more wildlife. Birds, marine life, and other creatures tend to be more active and visible when there's less human activity around.

Planning Your Hidden Beach Trip

Hat and bag on beachboophotography, Adobe Stock

While the allure of these secret shores is undeniable, there are a few things to remember when planning a trip:

  • Limited Amenities: Since these beaches are off the beaten path, don't expect lifeguards, restroom facilities, or snack bars. Come prepared.

  • Access: Some of these beaches might require a bit of effort to get to, whether it's a hike, a boat ride, or a drive down an unpaved road. Do your research and know what to expect.

  • Preservation: One of the reasons these beaches remain hidden gems is due to the respect visitors show. Always adhere to the "leave no trace" principle. Pack out what you pack in, respect the wildlife, and leave the beach as beautiful as you found it.

Now, let's get to it! Below, we dive into the top 10 hidden beaches across the United States.

1. Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas in Key West, Florida, United StatesColon Freld, Pexels

Just 70 miles west of Key West, this cluster of seven islands boasts crystal-clear waters and abundant marine life. Not only is it an ideal spot for snorkeling and diving, but the presence of the historic Fort Jefferson adds a dash of intrigue.

2. Second Beach, Washington

A woman walking on the beachVlada Karpovich, Pexels

Tucked into the Pacific Northwest, Second Beach offers stunning sea stacks, tide pools, and forested trails. It’s a bit of a hike to get there, but the view is more than worth the effort.

3. Carova Beach, North Carolina

Lifeguard tower on beachKristina Gain, Pexels

Accessible only by boat or 4x4, Carova Beach guarantees an escape from the usual beach crowds. Wild horses often roam the shoreline, adding a magical touch to the pristine landscape.

4. Sand Dollar Beach, California

A group of surfers at the beach

A hidden jewel along the Big Sur coastline, this beach is known for its jade hunting opportunities and its sizable namesake: sand dollars. The striking cliffs and rock formations provide a dramatic backdrop.

5. Roque Bluffs, Maine

A boat in the water at Roque Bluffs, MaineRobinLee, Adobe Stock

This quiet New England beach offers both fresh and saltwater shores. The cool ocean on one side and the warmer waters of Simpson Pond on the other make it a unique beachgoing experience.

6. Cowyard Landing, Massachusetts

Beach in Cow Yard Landing, Chatham MACoastal Neighborhoods.com

Hidden on Cape Cod, Cowyard Landing is a serene spot perfect for those looking to enjoy a peaceful day by the sea, away from the typical Cape Cod hustle and bustle.

7. Enderts Beach, California

Scenery at Enderts Beach, CaliforniaJohn Chao, National Park Service

Found in Redwood National Park, Enderts Beach offers rugged coastal views combined with towering redwoods. The Crescent Beach Overlook is a short trek away, where you can spot seals and sea lions.

8. Kapalua Bay, Hawaii

Scenery at Kapalua Bay, Hawaiiarkanto, Adobe Stock

While Hawaii has no shortage of beaches, Kapalua Bay is a less-frequented nook that boasts golden sands and two coral reefs, making it a snorkeler's paradise.

9. Kiawah Island, South Carolina

Boardwalk at Kiawah Island, South Carolinakmm7553, Adobe Stock

With 10 miles of unspoiled beach, Kiawah Island is a haven for both nature enthusiasts and those seeking a peaceful retreat. Its dunes and marshes are home to diverse wildlife.

10. Johnson's Beach, Florida

Johnson's Beach, FloridaCheryl Casey, Adobe Stock

Located in Perdido Key, this Gulf Coast gem offers soft white sands and a laid-back vibe. As part of a national seashore, its natural beauty has remained untouched by commercial developments.


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