Dr. Beach, arguably the authority on all things beachy, has once again confirmed what Floridians and snowbirds already know: The best beaches in America are here in Florida. However, according to this year's list, Siesta Beach is as good as it gets.
Dr. Beach, also known as Stephen Leatherman, released his 2017 annual list of America's "top beaches," and Siesta Beach was named No. 1.
According to Leatherman, Siesta Beach
, which is only about a 2.5-hour drive from Orlando, has the "finest, whitest sand in the world" and a "gently-sloping beach-face" that has put it at No. 1 for the second time, with the first time being in 2011.
Other Florida beaches also took high honors. Caladesi Island State Park in Clearwater was chosen as No. 7, and Grayton Beach State Park in the panhandle came in at No. 4.
Currently a professor at Florida International University, Leatherman has 50 criteria for the top 10 beach list
including metrics like best sand, water quality, amenities, beach safety, and environmental management.
Dr. Beach's complete top 10 list for 2017:
1. Siesta Beach in Sarasota, Florida
2. Kapalua Bay Beach in Maui, Hawaii
3. Ocracoke Lifeguarded Beach at Outerbanks of North Carolina
4. Grayton Beach State Park in the Florida panhandle
5. Coopers Beach in Southampton, New York
6. Coast Guard Beach in Cape Cod, Massachusetts
7. Caladesi Island State Park in Clearwater, Florida
8. Hapuna Beach State Park at Big Island, Hawaii
9. Coronado Beach in San Diego, California
10. Beachwalker Park at Kiawah Island, South Carolina