Travel Tips

Travel Tip: The Best & Worst Beaches in America

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons User Tijuana Brass

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons User Tijuana Brass

Now that we’re officially in beach season, do you know the best—and the worst—beaches to visit this summer?

Every year, a coastal scientist named Stephen Leatherman, a.k.a. Dr. Beach, ranks the best beaches in America based on 50 different factors, like sand and water quality and the presence of rip currents.

This year, the #1 beach in America is Waimanalo Bay Beach Park on the island of Oahu.

The other Hawaii pick was Hamoa Beach on Maui, which ranked fourth.

Four beaches in Florida made the list, along with Cape Hatteras in North Carolina’s Outer Banks, and a beach on Kiawah Island, South Carolina.

That’s the good news.

But what about the beaches to avoid? The National Resource Defense Council ranks the most polluted beaches in America every summer.

That has included Ropes Park in Texas, Cabrillo Beach in California, and Villa Angela State Park in Ohio.

No matter where you go, pay attention to signage and avoid swimming for 72 hours after a rainfall, when coastal waters get polluted with urban runoff and sewage.

For more tips on planning your beach vacation, check out:

Keep reading for more travel tips.