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My TOP 10 Favorite Beaches…from the perspective of a beach snob.

It’s no secret I LOATHE Minnesota winters.  However, I’m here to stay (until I retire) so my compromise with my husband is that we go to a beach EVERY winter or I will become Jack Nicholson from the “Shining.”  He prefers I don’t go mentally insane, so he obliges.  I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to quite a few beaches and my definition of a perfect beach is FEW people crowding me, SUGAR soft sand and CRYSTAL blue waters.  Some of you may prefer beaches with lots of beachgoers, loud music, walking jewelry “vendors” and all the like…however, for those who like a serene setting, this list is for you!

  1. SANDY POINT BEACH, St. Croix U.S. Virgin Island was THE most beautiful beach I’ve EVER been to.  Here’s why it ranks #1 on my list.  The water was as calm as a quiet lake, as warm as a bathtub and as blue as it looks in the picture.  This beach is closed several days of the week because it is a national wildlife refuge.  There were several of us who walked to the beach once the gates were open.  It was quiet and magical.  This isn’t where you “stay” it’s a place you go for a day visit with a packed lunch, towel and a camera!


2. LONG BAY BEACH, Turks and Caicos.  The color and clarity of this water brought tears to my eyes.  Literally.  Granted, I found out I was pregnant when I got home, so my hormones might have had something to do with that…but all the same, I loved it.  It looked fake it was so beautiful.

3. ANNA MARIA ISLAND (the North End), Florida…I’ve traveled to MANY places in Florida, but Anna Maria has become my family’s favorite.  We love the north end of the island where it’s quieter and less congested.  The white sand and blue water is just stunning and you can walk for MILES along it.  The entire stay during our vacations we ride bike everywhere!

Anna Maria Island, Florida

4. CHEN RIO BEACH, Cozumel…we were tired of hearing the jet skis and drunk teens at our resort beach so we trekked out to find a calmer spot on the island.  This is where we landed and we ended up going there every day after.  The trick is to nab a lounger from a nearby restaurant/bar and they’ll let you use it all day as long as you buy a drink or two….NO PROBLEM! It was quieter, calmer and sandier here than most beaches on Cozumel and most of the cruise ship people don’t know about it (that’s a good thing!)

Chen Rio Beach, Cozumel

5. KAANAPALI BEACH, Maui….Now this one doesn’t have the calmest or bluest waters out of the bunch.  But!  When you sit on this beach during the months of December-May you can watch humpback whales jumping and splashing out in front of you ALL day long.  The sunset from this beach is also EPIC!

Kaanapali Beach, Maui

6. RODNEY BAY, St. Lucia British Virgin Islands…this water at the Sandals Resort was ABSOLUTELY still and calm.  Wow!  I didn’t know water could be this “soft” in the ocean!  Sugar sand is under your feet for 100’s of feet into the water.  Gorgeous!

St. Lucia, Sandals Grand Lucian Resort

7. 7 MILE BEACH, Grand Cayman…this beach IS busier which is why it ranks a little lower on my list, however, the sand and the beautiful water is really hard to beat anywhere in the world.  It’s no wonder it’s such a popular destination.  We might have walked all 7 miles of it!! lol

8. HALF MOON CAY, Bahamas…while taking the cruise ship tender from the ship to the beach I COULD not believe the clarity of this water.  You could see down SO far into the pristine water.  We spent the day sleeping on the beach and just staring at the water!

9. CAPTIVA ISLAND, Florida…I love the vibe on this tiny little island.  We drive or boated there from nearby home rentals and spend the day on the beautiful white sand beaches.  The kids LOVE to build sand castles there and we like to park out butts near the “Mucky Duck” so the adults can sip on beverages and order apps throughout the day.

Captiva Island, Florida

10. TRADER’S BAY, Walker, MN…yes, I’m from Minnesota, I had to include a lake!  This is arguably one of the nicest beaches in the state of Minnesota.  I’m blessed enough to own a lake home here (you can rent it if you’d like) and feel like we hit the jackpot when it comes to lake home beaches.  The beach on this HUGE lake is  level and sandy 100’s of feet out.  I hate the feeling of seaweed or mucky mud in lakes…this DOES NOT have that.

Trader’s Bay, Walker, MN

That’s all folks!  Where are your favorite beaches?  Have you ever been to any of these?  Do you have any I should visit?!

Take care for now and cheers to sand between your toes, a sunset going down and a cocktail in your hand!


Em (Laney Lu’s Mom)

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