Lighthouse Beach in Buxton has been designated the #5 spot on Dr. Beach’s meticulously curated list of “2023 Top Ten Beaches.”
Stephen Leatherman, renowned coastal expert at Florida International University known as Dr. Beach, released his annual ratings of the ten best beaches in the United States on May 19.
The Charlotte-native has been releasing his top 10 list since 1991 and uses 50 criteria in the evaluation process of swimable beaches. Factors include beach width at low tide, sand softness and color, wildlife, pests including mosquitoes, available amenities and public safety.
The 2023 list is as follows:
1. St. George Island State Park, Florida Panhandle
2. Duke Kahanamoku Beach, Oahu, Hawaii
3. Coopers Beach, Southampton, New York
4. Caladesi Island State Park, Dunedin/Clearwater, Florida
5. Lighthouse Beach, Buxton, Outer Banks of North Carolina
6. Coronado Beach, San Diego
7. Wailea Beach, Maui, Hawaii
8. Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Island, South Carolina
9. Poipu Beach, Kauai, Hawaii
10. Coast Guard Beach, Cape Cod, Massachusetts
“Lighthouse Beach is where the old spiral-striped Cape Hatteras Lighthouse once stood until it was moved landward in 1999 because of beach erosion. This lifeguarded beach is the number one surfing spot on the U. S. Atlantic Coast as the large offshore sand banks, known as Diamond Shoals, cause wave refraction focusing wave energy on this beach,” explains Leatherman.
“It is fun to stroll down to the Cape Point where a long sand spit often exists, making one feel somewhat like Moses because the waves are coming from both directions as you walk along this narrow string of sand in the ocean.”
Lighthouse Beach is the only beach in North Carolina to be featured in this year’s ranking.
For more details on the ranking, visit Dr. Beach’s website.