When a man dubbed Dr. Beach tells you these are the best beaches in the nation, you sort of have to listen. And for 2017, the good doctor says Siesta Beach in Sarasota is the beach to beat.
“Siesta Beach boasts that it has the finest, whitest sand in the world, which attracts sand collectors and beach lovers from all over,” Dr. Beach (aka coastal expert Stephen P. Leatherman, a professor at Florida International University, announced May 25. “The clear, clean waters along this gently-sloping beachface make for ideal swimming. The beach is hundreds of yards wide, attracting fitness fans and volleyball players. Siesta is a year-round beach that is very popular with snowbirds during the winter months. There are lifeguards along this crescent-shaped beach along with full amenities. Recent upgrades include expanded parking, while maintaining the beautiful natural environment, and a free trolley to transport beachgoers.”
Dr. Beach has been ranking the top 10 beaches in the United States annually since 1991, and Florida beaches are usually well represented in his lists. Fifty criteria are used in his evaluations, including water and sand quality, environmental management and safety and even factors like “no-smoking” policies.
In addition to Siesta Beach, other Florida beaches in this year’s Top 10 include Grayton Beach State Park in the panhandle (ranked fourth) and Caladesi Island State Park in Dunedin (ranked seventh).
Here are a few of our favorite Instagram pics of Siesta Beach that we found today after the big news was announced: