These rankings of America’s best beaches always seem to come out when the weather’s still pretty cold — in Maine, anyway.
And despite its signature rocky coast and relatively short swimming seasons, Maine is increasingly getting attention for its beaches.
Coastal Living magazine named Sand Beach on Mount Desert Island one of its 21 best beaches in the country just more than a year ago, and now TripAdvisor, which uses thousands of customer reviews to zero in on its list of the top 25, is trumpeting the virtues of Ogunquit Beach.
Like the Coastal Living list before it, the 2016 TripAdvisor ranking is chock full of locations in California, Hawaii and Florida, all places with warmer temperatures year-round and more widely known for their beaches.
In fact, of TripAdvisor’s top 10, six are in Florida — including top-ranked Clearwater Beach — while three are in Hawaii and one is in California.
The Maine entry is one of only three beaches in the entire top 25 not in one of those three states.
That Maine manages to get a word in edgewise in this conversation, considering our geographic placement, is pretty impressive. Places like North and South Carolina, Virginia, Texas and Alabama — all of which have some very recognizable beaches — were totally shut out of the ranking.
Ogunquit Beach is slotted at No. 15, just behind Manini’owali Beach in — you guessed it — Hawaii, and just ahead of Newport Beach in — drumroll, please — California.
The other non-Florida/Hawaii/California beaches to make the cut were Race Point Beach in Provincetown, Massachusetts, at No. 19 and Ocean City Bean in Maryland at No. 25.
Beach goers needn’t restrict themselves to just Ogunquit and Mount Desert Island if they’re in Maine, of course. Popham Beach in Phippsburg is among Maine’s most visited state parks, while thousands of tourists flock to Old Orchard Beach every year as well, among many other great beaches here.
Which Maine beach is your favorite? Leave your choice in the comments below or share it on Facebook.