tbo: Tampa Bay Online.
Friday, Aug 18, 2017
Travel and Beaches

Clearwater Beach ranked No. 1 in the U.S., other local beaches crack top 5

You don’t need to fly 13-plus hours to the middle of the Pacific Ocean to feel the best beach in America under your toes — it’s right here in the Tampa Bay area, according to TripAdvisor.

The travel reviews and booking website announced its best beaches rankings today, and Clearwater Beach edged out Lanikai Beach in Kailua, Hawaii for the top spot on the list.

“The sugar fine white sand is a trademark of this fabulous beach. Perfect for a day in the sun. You might even spot a dolphin or two playing on the horizon,” the site wrote of Clearwater Beach on its list of the 25 best beaches in the U.S.

Another Pinellas County spot, St. Pete Beach, landed at No. 4 on the list, one spot behind Sarasota County’s Siesta Key Beach, about 60 miles south of Tampa.

Florida locales, including Pensacola Beach (No. 7), St. Augustine Beach (No. 9) and Panama City Beach (No. 10), made up 10 of the 25 beaches on the list, more than any other U.S. state, with California and Hawaii following behind.

TripAdvisor also released a list of its top 10 beaches in the world. The top spot on that one went to Grace Bay in the Turks and Caicos. Closer to home, Playa Paraiso in Cayo Largo, Cuba, took the No. 3 spot.

Those in a hurry to visit Clearwater Beach will need to leave early. Clearwater city officials announced today that motorists can expect possible significant traffic delays when headed to the beach the next two weekends due to railroad construction.

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