There’s no better way to get to know a new place than with insider tips that give the real local edge. With summer all around, we just had to introduce you to our favorite hidden beaches across the country. We have over 20 hostels near the beach, but we’ve compiled a list of just a few you wouldn’t expect to find near the waves. We’ve also included travel distance from the hostel to the beach to help you plan your stay. So gather up your friends, old and new, and visit these not-so-well known gems.
1. HI Seattle - Madison Park Beach (Distance: 4.3mi)
Known as one of the most popular swimming beaches in Seattle, Madison Beach has a grassy area where sunbathers can relax and enjoy a stunning view.
Local Tip: Don’t forget your inflatables because this water is absolutely perfect for lounging out on the sea.
2. HI Chicago - 12th St Beach (Distance: 1.7mi)
You may be in the Windy City, but with this Chicago beach you’ll feel like you’ve scored the ultimate summer getaway.
Local Tip: With rental bikes available on the corner of every block, you can explore the whole beach with ease.
3. HI Nantucket - Surfside Beach (Distance: 0.2mi)
Now Nantucket may not be the most tucked away of the bunch, but when you have a beach that’s right across the street, it’s hard not to show it off!
Local Tip: Most lodgings are blocks away from the sand and surf so take advantage of your convenient proximity and spend your whole day relaxing by the shore.
4. HI Wellspring - Lion’s Den Gorge Nature Preserve (Distance: 12.7mi)
Lion’s Den may not be your traditional beach but it’s sure to entertain beyond your wildest dreams. This beautiful land spreading along Lake Michigan has hiking trails, boardwalks through the wetlands, a few miles of beachfront, and a salmon spawning streams.
Local Tip: Go during sunrise or sunset hours and you’re sure to score an Instagram-worthy photo.
5. HI Richmond - Texas Beach (Distance: 2.6mi)
Texas Beach is Richmond’s hidden gem known for its singletrack trails, friendly dog walkers, and calm waves. Relaxing on the river rocks is a perfect way to end the day.
Local Tip: The Northbank Trail is an excellent challenge for mountain bikers and even passes below the historic Hollywood Cemetery.
6. HI San Francisco Fisherman’s Wharf - Crissy Field Beach (Distance: 4.5mi)
Like jumping into a postcard, Crissy Field Beach is a must-see for any SF hosteller.
Local Tip: this is a pet friendly beach so once you get there, sit back and get your cuteness overload.
7. HI Monterey - Del Monte Beach (Distance: 3.1mi)
Del Monte Beach is the perfect place for a quiet picnic along the shore. And for all you nature lovers, don’t miss your chance to see the wonderful marine life this location has to offer. From sea otters along the shore to going whale watching in a glass bottom boat, you’re sure to get a completely new outlook on the ocean.
Local Tip: There are bonfire pits all along the beach so pack your chocolate and marshmallows for a delicious treat while watching the sunset.
These beach-hostel locations are pretty epic! And there’s no better way to get to know the culture of a new place than to hang out where the locals spend their time.