Finally, beach season is here and we’re getting into the groove of summer.
We’ve got our favorite beach bag, sun hat, sunscreen and, of course, our PlaneAire, all ready to go for our next seaside trip. It is hard for the globetrotting PlaneAire team to pick only a handful of best beaches, but here are five favorites in the U.S., Carribbean and even far-flung Europe.
Marco Island, Florida
Located a short ride from the Florida Everglades and close to Naples, Marco Island offers tropical climate and is the largest and only developed land in Florida’s Ten Thousand Islands. This Gulf Coast retreat offers luxury resorts, beautiful beaches and unspoiled parks.
Visit popular public beaches like Marco Island Golf Beach and Tigertail Beach Park, which offer family-friendly activities like shelling, beach fishing, and dolphin watching. For a luxe beach resort, stay at the JW Marriott Marco Island Beach Resort, which has its own private beach and just went through a major renovation.
This “One Happy Island” is below the hurricane belt, which means you can visit it all year and expect beautiful sunny skies and not much rain. Although the high rise area has the most well-known hotel brands on Palm Beach, such as Marriott, Ritz Carlton and Hilton, it is the low-rise area that has the most expansive, sought-after beach in Aruba–Eagle Beach. Sunbathers are spoiled for choice on the powdery white sand and if you aren’t staying at one of the properties on this side of the island (like Manchebo, Bucuti & Tara or Costa Linda), there is ample parking for visitors.
The beach is often named one of the world’s best and it is home to two of the most photographed and renowned fofoti trees on the island, which point in the direction of the Caribbean. Four species of sea turtles nest in Aruba; most turtle nests are found on Eagle Beach and you can view them hatch in August.
Experience old world charm and Hollywood glam on the French Riviera in Cannes, France, home to the famous Cannes Film Festival and beautiful beaches along the Boulevard de la Croisette. The Hotel Martinez is known for hosting celebrities and offering one of the best experiences on its Zplage private beach. A DJ and saxophonist perform in the afternoons starting in June and guests can reserve a lounger on the famous terrace that juts out into the ocean.
Public beaches along the curved coast include La Bocca and Mourre Rouge and they are sheltered from east-west winds because of the long cove.
U.S. Virgin Islands
The waters surrounding the U.S. Virgin Islands are some of the most sought after in the world for swimming, recreation and snorkeling. Accessible via a rental car or taxi, Magens Bay on St. Thomas, known for its calm waters and heart-shaped protected bay, is a popular beach on the island and beckons visitors and locals to experience true relaxation in paradise.
The 1-mile beach is part of a park that consists of 68 acres that include a camping ground, coconut groves and 15 acres of mangroves and wetlands. Relax on the beach or head over to the boat concession stand to rent paddle boats and kayaks by the hour.
As PlaneAire is based in Princeton and manufactured in Edison, we have to add New Jersey to the list! The Garden State has over a dozen beaches along its coastline that offer something for everyone, from couples to families.
Well known beaches include the now very hip Asbury Park, family-friendly Ocean Grove, and romantic Cape May. Two of our favorites include Long Beach Island and Spring Lake.
Spring Lake offers a small-village-like atmosphere with charming B&Bs, boutiques and fine dining, and the family-friendly beach is quiet as there is no commercial boardwalk (so bring a big picnic!). A popular spot for seafood and drinks is Parker House, which is always bustling day and night.
An 18-mile barrier island, Long Beach Island (LBI) has a new luxury hotel, Hotel LBI, which offers suite accommodations for couples and families.