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Best Florida Beaches

U.S. News Best Vacations Badge

With about 1,200 miles of coastline, Florida is a year-round travel destination for many on the East Coast. Plus, the diversity of the shores – from family-friendly to party-focused – helps draw all different types of travelers. U.S. News took into account factors like aesthetics, atmosphere and convenience as well as user votes to rank the best Florida beaches. What's your favorite beach in the Sunshine State? Vote below to contribute to next year's rankings. Click here to see the Best Resorts in Florida » 

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#1 Destin

#1 in Best Florida Beaches

Families flock to Destin for its white sands, gorgeous Gulf waters and frequent sunshine. This Florida mainstay is one of the state's most affordable beach towns, though temperatures, visitor volume and room rates are at their highest in the summer. Read More »

Boating View 17 photos
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#2 St. Petersburg, FL

#2 in Best Florida Beaches

The Sunshine City offers the best of both worlds. Visitors will find miles of relaxing shorelines and an urban cityscape – perfect for those looking to escape to the beach without feeling disconnected. Plus, the city holds the world record for having the most consecutive days of sunshine. Read More »

Sunshine City View 15 photos
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#3 Sanibel Island

#3 in Best Florida Beaches

You'll be hard-pressed to find a place in Florida with quieter and calmer shores than Sanibel Island. Here, the pastime is "shelling" – collecting assorted colorful seashells along the sand – rather than partying, making this beach an excellent choice for families. Read More »

Shelling View 16 photos
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#4 Sarasota

#4 in Best Florida Beaches

This quaint city on Florida's west coast and the larger Sarasota County area feature six barrier islands with a variety of beaches, including family-friendly options like Lido Key Beach and Siesta Beach. Plus, Sarasota's artsy atmosphere and large Amish and Mennonite community make it one of the Sunshine State's more unique destinations. Read More »

Sarasota Skyline View 18 photos
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#5 Naples

#5 in Best Florida Beaches

Overflowing with golf courses, gourmet restaurants and boutique shops, Naples offers travelers an upscale Florida retreat. The luxury resorts and costly activities can make a Naples vacation quite expensive. But luckily, the beaches are completely free to enjoy. Read More »

Naples Pier View 18 photos
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#6 Key West

#6 in Best Florida Beaches

This tiny island might be at the end of the Keys, but it should also garner a spot at the top of your list. This little refuge will knock your socks off with exciting festivals, laid-back bars and fascinating people. However, the shores themselves can also be a bit overcrowded. Read More »

Busker View 39 photos
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#7 Pensacola

#7 in Best Florida Beaches

Overlooking the Gulf of Mexico on the Florida Panhandle, Pensacola is best known for its idyllic beaches and military base. Pensacola Beach and Perdido Key offer ample amenities, calm waters and dolphin sightings, but for more elbow room, check out the less crowded Gulf Islands National Seashore, which is home to the longest stretch of protected coastline in the country. Read More »

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#8 Fort Lauderdale

#8 in Best Florida Beaches

Often overlooked for Miami, Fort Lauderdale's less chaotic, less crowded beaches are its greatest asset. Fort Lauderdale is both family- and budget-friendly, offering significantly lower room rates than other nearby Florida beach spots. If you need a break from the sand, go for a stroll along the beach's palm tree-lined promenade. Read More »

Skyline View 24 photos
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West Palm Beach

West Palm Beach Skyline

West Palm Beach

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Panama City Beach

Panama City Beach

Panama City Beach

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Amelia Island

Amelia Island

Amelia Island

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Cocoa Beach

Cocoa Beach

Cocoa Beach

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