America’s Best Coastal Views

Many travelers find coastal views to be stimulating yet peaceful amidst the sandy seashore. The vast ocean is mysterious in nature. The power of these tranquil views excites the mind and energizes the body. Whether you are looking for a weekend to relax or recharge, make way to some of the best shorelines and coastal views in America.

ChaosCollage / iStock /

Cannon Beach, Oregon
Cannon beach is nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Coast Range. Often known for the famous, Haystack Rock, which powers and protrudes out of the ocean. There are plenty of seaside hotels to choose from, but for a panoramic view, head to Escola State Park. Hike the main trail to get the best views in town. Adventure seekers find tranquility through paragliding, surfing, hiking or whale watching.

kongxinzhu / iStock /

Shi Shi Beach | Olympic National Park, Washington
When in the Olympic National Park, head to Shi Shi (pronounced shai shai) Trail for a 3.3. mile walk of spectacular Pacific Northwest views. Walk amidst spruce forests, and step foot adjacent to some of the most magnificent sea stacks. Most popular stack, Point of Arches, is every photographer’s coastal model. Surfers hit the waves and nature lovers look out for eagles, gray whales and otters.

kanonsky / iStock /

Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park | Big Sur, California
Big Sur and the Highway 1 drive is no surprise to spectacular, magnificent coastal views. The park is 37 miles south of Carmel and stretches from coast to 3,000-foot ridges. Take a walk under the shady 400-foot redwoods and observe the coast from Overlook Trail. Here you can also view the 80-foot McWay Falls, which is the only coastal waterfall in the region.

cjm1 / iStock /

Ogunquit, Maine
Small town charm exudes big time views along Maine’s coastline. With a motto, “A beautiful place by the sea,” rings true as visitors and locals are presented with 3.5 miles of white sandy shoreline. Take a stroll near the lighthouse, admire the sunset or walk around the “most walk-able community in Maine.”

Frankonline / iStock /

Napali Coast | Kauai, Hawaii
Any island in Hawaii boasts magnificent, tropical views. However, the famous Napali Coast features dramatic rock cliffs and waterfalls, which skyrocket among the shoreline. Catch a bird’s eye view with a day hike or backpacking trip on the 11-mile-one-way Napali Coast trail. Or book a kayak or boat tour to view the coastline from sea. Either way, it’s beautiful and breathtaking.

shakzu / iStock /

Tongass National Forest, Alaska
Expect dramatic, snowy views in Alaska. Tongass is a temperate rainforest located on the south shores of Alaska. Dramatic landscapes welcome primitive wildlife such as black bears, bald eagles and porcupines. Fly fish along the coast, or kayak the waters to admire a combination of fertile, yet chilled, landscapes.

Alex Gore / iStock /

Anna Maria Island, Florida
With views of Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, you are sure to admire the best of tropical waters. This is pure coastal living, thanks to avoidance of commercial big-chain boxes and greasy golden arches. It’s more likely to walk, bike or kayak instead of driving. View the clear-green-blue water by day and watch for sea turtles nesting by night. This is pure island paradise.

Elizabeth Kovar

Elizabeth is a fitness professional, workshop presenter and freelance writer. She is an active traveler who treks the globe looking for interesting stories to write and places to photograph. Her most significant travel achievements include living and volunteering in Australia twice and studied yoga in India.