Sometimes it’s perfectly OK to come in second.
Just take it from Stephen Leatherman, or as he’s known at Florida International University and the rest of the coastline-loving world, “Dr. Beach.”
The man is so devoted to his craft that every year he releases a list of the most beautiful beaches in the world, analyzing things like sand quality and water temps. He named Siesta Key as his No. 2 pick on his roundup of America’s best beaches.
“With some of the finest, whitest sand in the world, this beach attracts sand collectors from all over,” Leatherman says. “Siesta Beach has clear, warm waters that serve for ideal swimming.”
Beyond that, though, the town is a quiet community, where vacationers settle into Siesta Key rentals, a mix of cottages, homes and condos. Inside the home pictured, you might hear herons frolicking with sandpipers, and–if you’re lucky enough–perhaps a dolphin arching over the warm Gulf waters.
See. Visiting the No. 2 beach in America can’t be so bad.