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June 2024 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect All American Beach Vacation

Why an All American Beach Vacation (and what does that mean anyway?)

The three major holidays of summer, Memorial Day, Fourth of July, and Labor Day, all conjure up images of the quintessential elements of American Summers. From backyard barbeques to running through sprinklers to fireworks that light up the night skies, there are so many traditions that make up, not just the Summer Holidays, but all the days in between, too. Those gloriously long days of stretched-out sunlight that we fill with hours and hours building castles in the sand, reading all those books you’ve been meaning to, roasting marshmallows over the fire, and chasing fireflies when the streetlights go on have become pillars of the All American Summer. 

beach

While “All American” can mean many different things to many different people, add on “Beach Vacation” to that sentiment, and you start narrowing the focus to more common ground. This is where beach boardwalks, lighthouses, mini golf, fishing boats, and lobster bakes come into play. And while Dirty Dancing was famously set by lakes in the mountains, surely there will be someone on your beach vacation who “carried a watermelon!” Plus, the similarities just prove that the “All American Beach Vacation” can also be had at a lake beach, too!

Beach

Which leads us to another point: The Perfect All American Beach Vacation can be had at pretty much any beach town across the country. For this Inspiring Itinerary, I was “inspired” by the East Coast beach destinations that were highlighted in the last blog (if you missed it, find it here), but with a few tweaks, this Itinerary isn’t just for East Coast locations, it’s also suited for beach locations all over the US, from the Southern hospitality of the Gulf Coast, to the Great Lake Regions in the North, and of course, the West Coast towns that stretch from Cannon Beach in Oregon to the picturesque towns of Southern California. 

East Coast Beach Town

Get ready to wave that good ol’ Red, White and Blue this summer, on the Perfect All American Summer Beach Vacation!

Let’s Go!

East Coast Beach

Day 1

There’s nothing like cresting that hill on the last leg of your journey and being met with the most incredible view of the horizon stretched out before you. As you arrive at your beach destination, aka, your home for the next week, take a moment to soak in that perfect line where the sea meets the sky, and revel in the thought that this view is yours whenever you look up for the duration of your stay. 

beach

After settling in to your new digs, take some time to explore your surroundings; check out the pool, stroll along the beachfront, maybe grab a welcome cocktail from the bar while you ask the bartender or concierge about the best local restaurant for your first meal in town. After a day of traveling, a delicious meal and falling asleep to the sound of the ocean out your window is the perfect end to the day, and also the perfect beginning to your holiday week!

beach

Day 2 

As this is the Perfect All American Beach Vacation, you’ll surely want to spend your first full day away on the beach, of course. Head down to the beach early to secure a prime spot. Set up your beach chair and umbrella, then spend the morning basking in the sun, swimming in the ocean, and taking a walk along the shoreline, collecting seashells. 

beach shells

Midday, take a break from the sun to enjoy a light beachside lunch, whether it’s a picnic you packed or something from a nearby beach café. As the afternoon rolls on, continue to enjoy the beach. Try your hand at some fun activities like beach volleyball, paddleboarding, or even building an elaborate sandcastle. Don’t forget to reapply sunscreen and stay hydrated with plenty of water and refreshing beverages.

Beach family

In the late afternoon, head back to the hotel to freshen up and get ready for the evening. Once you’re rejuvenated, you might choose to spend the evening checking out some local breweries or wineries, depending on your preference. Craft beer is definitely having its moment in the sun, and it’s never hard to find a great craft brewery, especially in beach destinations that attract summer crowds. If wine is more your thing, vineyards may be harder to come by, but if you happen to be on your beach vacation in Montauk, New York (one of the recommended locations from the Top Five East Coast Destinations Perfect for a Summer Beach Escape), you’ll find a bunch of great vineyards within about an hour’s drive. 

Beach beer

As you sample the local beer or wine selections, be sure to ask the locals pouring your tastings for their favorite dinner spots! Somehow the bartenders at breweries and wineries always seem to know all the best restaurants in the area, including which dishes to try, too!

After dinner, return to your hotel, perhaps with a bottle of your favorite wine or beer from the afternoon’s tastings, and relax to the sounds of the ocean right outside your window. 

East Coast Beach Town

Day 3

No matter where you’ve chosen to take your Perfect All-American Beach Vacation, not too far from any beach town will be a lighthouse picturesquely perched on the coast, just waiting for you to come explore it. So, today, after your oceanside coffee and breakfast, make your way to the iconic local lighthouse, no doubt an historic landmark offering both adventure and stunning views. Spend the morning exploring the lighthouse museum, learning about its history and significance. Then, climb to the top for a breathtaking panoramic view of the coastline and the surrounding area, taking in the fresh sea air and capturing memorable photos.

East Coast Beach Town

After your lighthouse adventure, if the lighthouse also has a restaurant, maybe stay there for lunch, or head into town, stopping for a bite to eat before a relaxing afternoon of shopping. Wander through the charming streets lined with boutique shops, art galleries, and local markets. Browse for unique souvenirs, artisanal crafts, and locally-made products. Stop by a quaint bookstore or a specialty food shop, picking up some local delicacies or handmade items to take home.

ice cream

In the late afternoon, as you finish your shopping, make your way to a recommended restaurant for dinner, enjoying the lively atmosphere of being in town. Then after, take a leisurely stroll, perhaps stopping for a sweet treat at a local ice cream or fudge shoppe. Enjoy the evening ambiance, with twinkling lights and the gentle hum of the town’s nightlife before returning to your hotel to rest up for tomorrow’s adventures.

whale watching

Day 4

No beach vacation would be complete without a day out on the water. Once you’ve had time to enjoy your morning coffee and breakfast, head to one of the local marinas, where (depending on your preference) you’ll embark on a fishing or whale watching sail (which, of course, your favorite Love of the Magic Vacations Travel Advisor can book for you). If you choose fishing, you’ll spend the morning on a chartered boat, guided by local experts who will help you catch the best fish the area has to offer. Alternatively, if you opt for whale watching, you’ll cruise along the coastline, keeping an eye out for majestic whales, dolphins, and other marine life. The experience of seeing these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat is both thrilling and unforgettable.

New England Beach Town

After a rewarding morning on the water, return to shore and take some time to relax, freshen up, and maybe have some lunch back at your hotel. In the afternoon, take a leisurely walk along the beach or explore a nearby nature trail, soaking in the serenity of the coastal landscape. As the day progresses, make your way to a traditional clam or lobster bake dinner, featuring freshly caught seafood cooked to perfection. Enjoy the convivial atmosphere, with picnic tables set up for communal dining, and the delicious flavors of clams, lobsters, corn on the cob, and other classic sides.

As the sun sets, the bonfire crackles, adding warmth and ambiance to the evening, while you enjoy the camaraderie of fellow diners, sharing stories and toasting to new memories. The combination of the fresh sea air, the sound of the waves, and the delectable food creates an unforgettable dining experience.

smores

After the feast, take a leisurely walk along the beach under the stars, savoring the peaceful night before retiring to your hotel.

beach

Day 5 

By now you’ve surely perfected your morning ritual of coffee with a side of waves crashing nearby, so once you’ve completed that, it’s time to head back to the beach to soak up more of that beautiful seaside ambiance (since this is the perfect Beach Vacation, remember!). Find your perfect spot on the sand, set up your beach chair and umbrella, and settle in for a day of sunbathing, swimming, and unwinding to the sound of the waves. Revisit your favorite beach activities from earlier in the week, whether it’s paddleboarding, building sandcastles, or simply reading a book by the shore.

beach

As the day progresses, take a break for a light beachside lunch, enjoying a sandwich, fresh fruit, or a snack from a nearby vendor. Spend the afternoon relishing in the simplicity and joy of beach life, with perhaps a nap under your umbrella or a refreshing swim in the ocean.

Mini Golf

Later on, pack up and head to a local mini golf course for a fun family game. Enjoy the playful competition and charming course designs, which often feature whimsical themes and obstacles with local landmarks such as mini lighthouses and ships. Mini golf courses have become a quintessential part of the All-American Beach Town experience, and you’re sure to find more than one option in whatever destination you’ve chosen. 

seafood shack

After mini golf, make your way to a recommended favorite local seafood shack for dinner. These casual, often family-owned eateries are known for their fresh, delicious seafood and relaxed atmosphere. Order some classic dishes like fish and chips, fried clams, or a hearty seafood platter. Enjoy your meal at a picnic table with a view of the water, savoring the authentic flavors and laid-back vibe.

East Coast Beach Town

As the evening winds down, take a  stroll along the beach or the nearby boardwalk, enjoying the cool evening air and the sound of the waves, and be sure to stop for some homemade ice cream along the way. Return to your hotel feeling relaxed and satisfied after a perfect day of beach activities, mini golf, and delicious seafood and dessert. 

East Coast Beach

Day 6 

On the final full day of your vacation, opt for a flexible itinerary today, and consider revisiting any activities or places you particularly enjoyed or missed earlier in the week. If you’re in the mood for a change of pace, spend the day lounging by the hotel pool instead of the beach. Relax in a comfortable lounge chair, take refreshing dips in the pool, and enjoy poolside service with snacks and drinks.

beach

If there are shops in town you’ve been thinking about, take some time to stroll back through the charming streets. Pick up those trinkets, souvenirs, or artisanal goods you had your eye on earlier in the week. Perhaps you’ll find a unique piece of jewelry, a local artwork, or some gourmet treats to bring back home. Engage with the friendly shopkeepers, who might share interesting stories or additional recommendations.

East Coast Beach town

In the afternoon, go for one last walk along the boardwalk, soaking in the vibrant atmosphere. Enjoy an ice cream cone or a refreshing beverage from a nearby stand, and take in the sights and sounds of the bustling beachfront scene. If you’re up for it, revisit your favorite mini golf course for another round, or simply find a bench to sit and watch the world go by.

As evening approaches, treat yourself to a special dinner at a seafood restaurant you haven’t tried yet, or return to one you loved earlier in the week. Enjoy the fresh catch of the day, perhaps indulging in a lobster roll, crab cakes, or a seafood boil. The casual, relaxed setting will be the perfect end to your day.

East Coast Beach

After dinner, venture out to the beach just one more time, letting the gentle sound of the waves and the cool night air wash over you. Reflect on the simple pleasures and wondrous experiences of the past week, from beach days and mini golf, to local flavors and stunning views. Return to your hotel, spending your final evening relaxing to the sound of ocean waves, and reliving the memories you’ve made during this perfect all-American beach vacation. Get a good night’s sleep, knowing you’ve made the most of every moment.

East Coast Beach Town

Day 7

As always, the final day of vacation comes too fast, so be sure to relish every moment of your last morning coffee by the sea. Although this All-American Beach Vacation may be coming to a close, it’s a comfort to know that you can have a Perfect All American Beach Vacation in SO many different locations across the country, each one giving that Classic Beach Vacation vibe, but each one also unique in its own way, with local dishes, shops, landmarks, and even beaches to vary things up just enough (of course, returning to the same beach town year after year is perfectly acceptable too, and tons of families create their most memorable moments through their annual beach traditions). Rest assured, the Perfect All American Beach Vacation is never too far away.

beach

Ready to Plan?

If you are ready to experience the Classic Summer Beach Getaway for yourself, and would like to plan your Perfect All American Beach Vacation, contact your Love of the Magic Travel Agent today, or email hello@LOTMV.com.  And of course, whether you want to escape to the beach, or plan your next adventure somewhere totally different, your favorite LOTMV Travel Advisor will work with you to create the unique experience you’re looking for. 

Looking for more of our Inspiring Itinerary series?

You can find links to all of 2023’s Inspiring Itineraries in this Blog: 2023 Inspiring Itineraries Recap and even links to all of 2022’s Inspiring Itineraries here: A Year of Inspired Travel: 2022’s Inspiring Itineraries, Month by Month

So far in 2024, we have:

January 2024 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect Christmas River Market Cruise

February 2024 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect Myriad of Mexico Vacation

March 2024 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect Journey Through Japan

April 2024 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect Caribbean Escape to St. Lucia

May 2024 Inspiring Itinerary: The Perfect Disney Besties Cruise to Alaska

Just like always, a new Inspiring Itinerary will come out each month!

And don’t forget to check out our Friday Blog Series: Jamie’s Destination “Do”s and “Don’t”s, where our favorite Travel Planning Aficionado shares her wealth of knowledge and experiences about traveling the world! You can find links to all of Jamie’s 2023 Travel Tips here: Jamie’s 2023 Destination “Do”s and “Don’t”s, A Recap, and to all of Jamie’s 2022 Travel Tips at this Blog: Jamie’s 2022 Destination “Do”s and “Don’t”s: A Recap

Ready to plan The Perfect All American Beach Vacation? Contact your Love of the Magic Vacations Travel Advisor today or email hello@LOTMV.com 

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