- Type: Beaches
- Time to Spend: 1 to 2 hours
|About these ratings|
Sand Beach is filled with sharp shells and its water rarely warms above 55 degrees Fahrenheit. But still, this is the most popular of the park's two beaches. Why? Because the views here are outstanding. Sandwiched between two walls of solid pink granite and surrounded by towering evergreens, the 290-yard-long shoreline is not your average beach. When you're not admiring the views from the shore, consider hiking up the Great Head Trail for an even better vantage point. This trail, which starts at the eastern end of the beach (the opposite end of the parking lot), has ascending granite steps that start at the base of the cliffs. Once you get to the top, you'll enjoy spectacular views of the beach and be able to spot The Beehive, a mountain that attracts experienced hikers.
You'll find this beach off Park Loop Road, just south of the east entrance pay station. If you choose to drive, you'll find a parking lot off Park Loop Road (this is also where the beach's changing rooms are located). The free Island Explorer shuttle also makes frequent stops at the beach. Because of its location off of Park Loop Road, Sand Beach is only open from mid-April to December.