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My Favorite Beaches Across the Globe

It’s getting to be that time of year. You know the time. The time where all I have on my mind is getting out of the snow and onto a beach. I can’t stop thinking about it, dreaming about it, planning my next trips. Over the year’s I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to beautiful beaches across the globe, and have definitely found some favorites for which none other compare. From the Mediterranean to the Gulf of Mexico, below are my top 6:

Pensacola, Florida

White sand beaches, literal turquoise waters, fiery sunsets. To this day, I have never seen prettier water. Pensacola was like second home to me while I was living in Alabama for grad school. I spring breaked here, I solo-tripped here, I brought family and friends here, and the consensus is all the same. Nothing, I repeat nothing, beats a gulf coast beach. Read more on Pensacola, here.

Things to see + do while you’re here:

– Drink Diesel Fuel at Flounder’s. The drink is as its name suggests – potent. You may want to bring a dd or plan a ride home if you’re going to be drinking these.

– Stop by Sunday brunch at Crabs We Got ‘Em for bottomless mimosas. The best part? You’re literally steps from the beach, just stumble down and take a nap in the sun for the rest of the day.

– Explore downtown Pensacola. One of my favorite little cities, Pensacola is cute and quaint with plenty of places to eat and drink right on the water, along with a unique art scene and a bit of history thrown in as well.

Truro, Massachusetts

I think this is one of my favorites because of the memories made here with some of my closest friends. I’m not usually a fan of northeast beaches, but damn. Truro is beautiful. And peaceful. And shark infested.. wait, what?! Yep, the weekend we visited this past summer there was a shark attack one beach over, so may want to keep an eye out if you’re visiting. But aside from that, great place to vacation 😂

I highly recommend making it over to the bay side for sunset if you can. Our Airbnb gave us access to a private beach right down the road, and I’ve never felt more relaxed in my life. Other than the water lapping on the sand, there was virtually no noise. It was amazing and a moment I’ll never forget.

Things to see + do while you’re here:

– Visit Highland Light. If you’re anything like me, you’re always scoping out your next shot, and the lighthouse (especially at sunset) makes for a great backdrop.

– Try a lobster roll. Or lobster pizza. Or lobster bisque. Just make sure you’re incorporating some sort of lobster into your diet while you’re in the northeast.

– Don’t be taken in by all the hype of Provincetown. We took a night out on the town here one evening and it did not live up to its hype. Wildly overpriced and hard to get around, even in the off-season.

Sandy Pond/ Sackets Harbor, Lake Ontario, New York

Now my central and upstate NY readers, you may laugh that I’m recommending our beaches, but the Sandy Pond/Lake Ontario duo has my heart… in the months of June – August that is. I’ve always wanted to live somewhere only accessible by boat, so to have a summer home nestled between these two bodies of water would be a dreaaaam.

Things to see + do while you’re here:

– Jetski! The waterways around this area are perfect for bopping around and finding secret little getaways. So many of the best beaches can only be reached by boat, and a jetski makes the journey even easier

– Grab a bite at Tin Pan Galley. Highly recommended by the locals with beautiful atmosphere and eats

Ocean City, Maryland 

A family favorite. My aunt lives here, so my family has been going to visit for as long as I can remember. I vividly remember boogie boarding, mini golfing, seashell hunting, gokart racing, feasting on ice cream and eating pounds of sand every year from diving face first chasing my brother around the beach. Commercialized as it is, Ocean City is one of my favorite beach towns, and where I have some of my favorite memories.

Things to see + do while you’re here:

– Brace yourself for a night out at Seacrets. You have to at least once. I can tell you it’s an experience you won’t EVER forget. Plan accordingly, though – especially on holiday weekends, you may have to wait in long lines for hours just to get in

– Eat a slice of Smith Island cake. This has been a favorite of mine since I was a kid, and with layers and layers of chocolate deliciousness, this local speciality won’t let you down.

– Take a walk along the boardwalk. While you’re here, you won’t want to miss Wockenfuss Candies, Thrasher’s French Fries or Dumser’s Dairyland

Nice, France

The one’s a beaut due to the water alone. I’m sure anywhere along the Mediterranean echos the same vibe, but staying in Nice as a 17-year-old who had never been out of her small town before, I’ll never forget the way my jaw dropped when we turned the block and ~ la mer mediterranee ~ glistening back at me. Ahhhh, that feeling that comes with uncovering new places, nothing in this world compares. One negative to this beach, however, was the rocks. No white sand here. May want to opt out from the beach towels and pack chairs instead!

Things to see + do while you’re here:

– Parasail over la mer. The beauty of the Mediterranean only becomes more beautiful a couple hundred feet up

– Enjoy the local cuisine, primarily tapas and gelato. There’s a vendor on almost every street for you to indulge in

Laguna Beach, California

I am not a fan of LA. I don’t think this comes as much of a surprise to anyone anymore. Lived it, experienced it, did not like it. But SoCal beaches are a thing of beauty, I will say that much. Plus, there’s something magical that comes from watching a Pacific coast sunset. Maybe the feeling that you’re the last to see the light of day in the continental US? Or maybe California in general just gives off that certain kind of magic. Maybe a little of both. All I know is that if you do find yourself in the greater Orange County area, you must spend a day at Laguna Beach. Bonus points if you can find the Thousand Steps Pool.

Things to see + do while you’re here:

– Grab an incredibly delicious sweet treat after your beach day at MILK.

– Turn your day trip into a weekend trip and hike the Hollywood sign (spoiler alert, it’s not like the movies, if you’re looking to get up close and personal with the sign, look elsewhere)

– Visit the Laguna Beach farmer’s market. Chances are you can find a fresh, locally grown snack to bring with you to the beach.

What are some of your favorite beaches? What makes them unique and a hot travel destination? Drop your votes in the comments below!

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