Are you tired of frequenting the same beaches every summer? It’s hard to recognize those touristy, over crowded beaches until you’re soaking up the sun shoulder to shoulder with strangers. Get off the beaten path and explore a new beach location this summer. We’ve come up with seven hidden beach destinations so secluded you’ll want to stay hush-hush about them, and you don’t even need your passport!
Lanikai Beach- Kailua, HI
Lanikai translates from Hawaiian to “heavenly sea”, and you should expect nothing less when visiting this hidden gem. We’re all eager to visit America’s own tropical island for the gorgeous palm trees and volcanic beaches. However, you can skip the crowds at Waikiki and try Lanikai beach. Just passed neighboring oasis, Kailua, Lanikai attracts a smaller crowd of people looking to relax in shimmering white sands and soft turquoise waters. Trade out your surfboard for a paddleboard or kayak as the tranquil nature of the water provides the perfect atmosphere for drifting around the shore. Situated on the windward east side of Oahu, this area is perfect for watching the sunrise or seeing the stunning moonrise in full.
Our only complaint? The beach is nestled within a neighborhood and parking can be tight. Make sure you arrive early to get a spot close to the exclusive entrance, and always be respectful of the surrounding residential area. For the best post-beach snack, head into town for some shaved ice at The Local. Indulge in delicious ice drenched with locally grown flavors such as pineapple, tamarind, and green tea.
Indian Beach- Cannon Beach, OR
The panoramic views at Indian Beach along Oregon’s coastline can’t be beaten! Venture into Ecola State Park and join the small population of beachgoers enjoying tide pools, mild waves, and charming views. Typically the surfers occupy one side of the beach, so you can watch them hang ten, or head to the other side of the shore for safe swimming. Up for a hike? The coastline offers scenic trails featuring secluded coves and forested peninsulas. There is even an old abandoned lighthouse all within the short distance of three miles. Indian Beach is an ideal place to take in the sunrise, as cotton candy skies complement the crashing blue waters. Parking only costs five dollars so pick a warm day and head out for an adventure to this hidden beach (or visit in winter/spring for the chance to see grey whales making their migration)!
Thousand Steps Beach- Laguna Beach, CA
You’ve heard the saying “It’s about the journey, not the destination.” But why can’t we have both? The Thousand Steps Beach gets it’s quite a literal name from the lengthy staircase descending to the sandy shore. While the steps are steep, they are lined with beautiful vines and greenery on both sides. When you make it to the bottom of the staircase, the shrubbery opens up to a panoramic view of a hidden beach. Aside from the private beachfront, there is a cave on the southernmost tip of the shore definitely worth exploring. Plus, it’s a perfect backdrop for the inevitable beach photoshoot.
You won’t be able to miss the cliff-top mansions that overlook Thousand Steps Beach in California. Just another reason to visit this secluded treasure, these mansions will have you fantasizing about your own Cali vacation home!
Bound Brook Island Beach- Wellfleet, MA
Though New England vacationers would argue all beaches in Cape Cod are amazing, Bound Brook Island Beach comes in as the top hidden beach on the Cape. Wander through the grass-carpeted sand dunes and marvel at the incredible ocean views from atop a seventy-foot hill. On a clear day, you can see all the way to mainland Massachusetts. Perhaps you’ll catch a glimpse of the Pilgrim Monument in Provincetown! Not a tourist run area, and unknown to even some locals, Bound Brook Island Beach is supremely serene. We recommend packing a good book and a picnic basket for a relaxing afternoon under the sun. Or maybe bring your significant other for an isolated, romantic walk.
Cumberland Island National Seashore- Cumberland Island, GA
If you’re looking for a quiet and unique hidden beach, the untouched shores of Cumberland Island are calling your name. Take a ferry from St. Marys, GA, straight to the Sea Camp dock and discover the natural wonders of Georgia’s unspoiled coastline. Complete with wild sea turtles, horses, and armadillos, Cumberland Island National Seashore offers seventeen miles of undeveloped beaches. The local conservatory has worked hard to keep the Island as unaffected as possible. As a result the beach is only accessible by a short hike from the Sea Camp dock. Are you a collector of seashells and other fascinating ocean debris? The tides on Cumberland Island shore always leave behind the oceans precious artwork and you are free to collect as many as you please.
Whether you want to stargaze under a summer breeze, swim in the crisp Atlantic water, or ride your bike along the coastline, you can do all activities on Cumberland Island without running into a crowd. However, watch out for the everpresent wild-roaming horses!
Second Beach- La Push, WA
Conceivably one of the most scenic beaches up and down the Pacific coastline, ocean stacks, tide pools, and tiny archipelagos amaze the eyes of all who visit. One archipelago, Quillayute Needles, works as National Wildlife Refuge. Sea otters are brought from Alaska to Quillayute Needles to repopulate the western coast of the continental U.S. The ocean stacks stick hundreds of feet out of the water, and are topped with local forestry, contradicting the sea and sand lying below. Snag a camping license to witness this hidden beach in all its glory, day and night. You can tell stories over a beach bonfire and watch the sun rise seemingly out of the water and between two ocean stacks.
Pass-a-Grille Beach- St. Petes, FL
With Florida’s reputation for miles of sandy shores, it’s no surprise the sunshine state is home to some amazing, and unknown beaches. Pass-a-Grille is a small island off the coast of St. Petersburg with a rich history of fishermen and locals who wonder how their haven hasn’t become a huge tourist attraction. The blue-green Gulf water compliments the endearing old Florida vibe of the town, making this hidden beach seem like it belongs in a different era. The northern end of Pass-a-Grille is marked by a large pink villa known as the Don Cesar hotel. The old-time hotel adds to the historic ambiance.
Chasing a beautiful sunset? You’re in the right place because Pass-a-Grille was once named sunset capital of Florida, and there are plenty of seafood shacks and beachside bars to get some grub before settling down to see the sun fall. Check out the Hurricane Seafood Restaurant to dine like a local, and get a spectacular rooftop view of the sunset. If you’d prefer to stay in the sand, head over to the Paradise Grille and enjoy any meal of the day without walking into town or leaving the sunshine. As its the only true on-beach dining option, this dive is a favorite for locals and visitors alike. With events such as local art bazaars and live music by the moonlight, you’ll undoubtedly want to try a local brew and see what Paradise is all about.
Trying to plan your next hidden beach getaway? Make it easy by contacting us at firstname.lastname@example.org for your personalized itinerary!