America's Best Coastal Views
- World's Most Amazing Views
- Vote for America's Most Attractive People
- America's Strangest Roadside Attractions
People often talk about how moving the shore is—a place that relaxes, awakens, and recharges.
What is it about ocean shorelines that has such power? They touch every sense: the redolence of fresh sea breeze, the sand underfoot, the sparkling sunsets, and the white noise of crashing waves. Whether you’re reclining on windswept sands or trekking across dizzying bluffs, the ebb and flow of the water is hypnotic, and its sheer expanse grounding. Something as vast as the ocean just puts all of life’s little worries into perspective.
Treasures can be found along all of the United States’ coasts, 95 thousand miles of eastern, western, northern, and southern shoreline that exemplify the diversity our country has to offer. So whether you crave a bracing hike along blustery seaside cliffs or a relaxed afternoon under the fiery sun, the U.S. has a shore to match your every mood—and views that will blow you away.
Newport Beach, RI
America’s wealthiest families started building their “summer cottages” (read: stately mansions) here in the mid 19th century, attracted by Newport Beach’s gorgeous views. Not much has changed since then, except that many of the historic homes—which overlook sweeps of ocean so immense it’s easy to forget that Rhode Island is our smallest state—are now open to the public, thanks largely to the efforts of Doris Duke in the 1950s. Her sprawling, 1887 English manor–style estate, Rough Point, is among the island’s most spectacular buildings—and it has the vistas to match.
Insider Tip: Don’t skip the mostly gentle 3.5-mile cliff walk, atop the beaches’ craggy rocks.
Brewster, Cape Cod, MA
On the beckoning hook of Massachusetts lies the town of Brewster, with mirage-like tidal flats so vast that a coast in Brazil is said to be their only rival in size. During low tide, you can walk a mile into the ocean on freshly exposed sand, alongside minnow-filled tidal pools, skittering hermit crabs, and bubbles from quahogs breathing underfoot.
Insider Tip: Stock up on penny candy like Boston Baked Beans and nonpareils at The Brewster Store before setting out to the beach. Eating it on the shore while looking up at the wind-beaten, colonial clapboard houses atop the bluff is pure Americana.