Do you find yourself dreaming of a faraway sandy isle all to yourself? It's hard to find a beach-towel-length spot to yourself on most U.S. coastline, but we've got your hookup. No passport? No problem! Find your own slice of paradise on these secluded beaches hidden around the continental U.S. All you need are sunglasses, SPF 50, and a surfboard or a date - your call. Either way, we have your perfect, secret beach right here. Try not to spill the beans!
A world away from nearby Gulf Shore, St. Joseph Peninsula is 20 miles of untouched nature reserve reaching into the crystal blue Gulf of Mexico. Camp between the marsh on one side and sandy dunes on the other, and watch the sun meet the horizon on a white sand beach in the arms of your sweetheart.
Everyone knows about Virginia Beach, and even the once-local Sandbridge has become crowded in recent years. For a truly secluded stretch of Virginia coastline, try Croatan Beach on the other side of Owl Creek from the Virginia Beach Boardwalk. With some of the best waves in the Southeast, your only competition will be local surfers.
Guess what? It is possible to find a beach in California that's not cramped. Ten miles south of Laguna Beach lies a mile of beautiful Southern California sand perfect for the surfer or swimmer getting away from the tourists.
Remember the Twilight movies? What they may have lacked in plot, they made up for in scenery - especially when it comes to Second Beach. The rocky crags, dense pine forests, and misty dark waters make the perfect backdrop for your own melodrama - or maybe some killer Instagram photos.
The phrase "wild horses" typically recalls Old West tall tales or the movie Spirit, but this sleepy barrier island has a real-life legend of its own. Home to salt marshes, live oaks, and free-roaming feral horses, Cumberland Island is only accessible by ferry, and is undeveloped besides 31 campsites and the elegant Greyfield Inn, built in 1890.
It's not hard to see why author Jim Harrison found solace in the Manitou Islands off Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. Visit the island's majestic old-growth cedars, and take a dip in the clear waters of Lake Michigan if you're feeling particularly inspired.
Roque Bluffs has it all - a half-mile of crescent-shaped, pebbly beach along Englishman Bay is separated by a strip of road from freshwater Simpson Pond. Pack a picnic and enjoy the park's nature trails between swims in the pond and daring dunks in the much colder bay waters.
Whether you're in the mood for backpacking, mountain biking, or just taking in the views, you can find your rhythm in the vast Montaña de Oro State Park. The rocky coast separates pockets of sandy beach, perfect for claiming an isolated stretch of Pacific coastline for your own.
Visiting the Outer Banks' most secluded island is well worth the considerable effort. Only accessible by ferry from Cape Hatteras, it's no wonder the empty white sand beaches were Blackbeard's favorite hideout.
Brave the trip by boat or kayak, and be rewarded with nine miles of undeveloped Caribbean-style paradise, perfect for swimming, fishing, snorkeling, and wildlife watching. If you're craving that private tropical island feel, Cayo Costa is the spot for you.