America’s Best Little Beach Towns
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America’s Best Little Beach Towns

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John Elk III / Alamy

These uncrowded and unpretentious beach towns, from Florida to Hawaii, promise fun that's (could it be?) actually affordable.

Pacific Grove, CA

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Tucked between popular Monterey, Pebble Beach, and Carmel, this quiet town is more famous for its butterflies and stray deer than its tourists. You won’t find a true swimming beach—Pacific Grove is more about huge waves crashing into rocks—but it’s great for tide-pooling, kayaking, and serious surfing.

Stay: Despite its tiny size, Pacific Grove has more B&Bs than any other coastal town between San Francisco and L.A. The granddaddy is the decadently Victorian Seven Gables Inn, which overlooks the water and offers daily wine and cheese tastings.

Eat: Passionfish was the first “green” restaurant in Monterey County, and you can enjoy your sustainable seafood and organic vegetables—such as sea scallops with caper-raisin-walnut relish or asparagus fries—while watching downtown life walk by outside.

Katrina Brown Hunt

America’s Best Little Beach Towns

Pacific Grove, CA

Tucked between popular Monterey, Pebble Beach, and Carmel, this quiet town is more famous for its butterflies and stray deer than its tourists. You won’t find a true swimming beach—Pacific Grove is more about huge waves crashing into rocks—but it’s great for tide-pooling, kayaking, and serious surfing.

Stay: Despite its tiny size, Pacific Grove has more B&Bs than any other coastal town between San Francisco and L.A. The granddaddy is the decadently Victorian Seven Gables Inn, which overlooks the water and offers daily wine and cheese tastings.

Eat: Passionfish was the first “green” restaurant in Monterey County, and you can enjoy your sustainable seafood and organic vegetables—such as sea scallops with caper-raisin-walnut relish or asparagus fries—while watching downtown life walk by outside.

Katrina Brown Hunt

John Elk III / Alamy
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