Summer is nearly here, and that means it’s time to hit the beach! And New York has some amazing ones, from the sandy coast of Long Island to the serene lakesides of the Adirondacks, and the seemingly endless horizon of Lake Ontario. (Fun fact: New York is the only state with coastlines on an ocean as well as the Great Lakes.) Check out some of some of New York’s most stunningly Instagram-worthy waterfronts below, then grab some sunblock, a beach towel, and your camera. and get yourself (and your whole crew) to a New York beach. Summer will be over before you know it.

Main Beach

Main Beach in the Hamptons consistently makes its way onto lists of the best beaches in the country,  thanks to its beautiful sandy beach, sparkling ocean views, and unparalleled people-watching during peak summer season. 

Fire Island National Seashore


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Although it’s just a couple of hours from New York City, this (mostly) car-free barrier island off the coast of Suffolk County feels worlds away from the city’s bustle. In addition to its expansive beaches, Fire Island is home to a maritime forest and the historic Fire Island Lighthouse.

Million Dollar Beach

The Adirondacks may be best known for their high peaks, but the lakes are just as stunning. Lake George has been popular summer destination for generations, thanks to its variety of family-friendly attractions and bucolic views like this one from one of its most popular beaches.
Read more: Spotlight on the Adirondacks

Coopers Beach


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This Southampton beauty recently appeared on Dr. Beach’s Top Ten beaches in the U.S. – and it’s easy to see why. One glance at the pristine white sand and endless views of the Atlantic, and it’s clear why the Hamptons are one of America’s most beloved summer communities.

Ontario Beach

You’ll find this popular beach in north Rochester on the shores of Lake Ontario. It’s a perfect choice for anyone who thinks a day at the beach is “boring.” It offers swimming, boating, volleyball, and even a historic carousel. 
Read more: Spotlight on Rochester

Glimmerglass State Park


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Writer James Fenimore Cooper called Otsego Lake "Glimmerglass" because of its crystal-like appearance, and it's just as stunning today as it was when he first saw it in the 18th Century. In addition to the beach which allows swimming and boating access to the lake, the state park offers tons of fun, from hiking and fishing, to camping. So make a day--or a weekend--of it.

Jones Beach State Park

If you’re visiting NYC this summer, tack on a trip to this gorgeous sandy beach, just over an hour from Manhattan. In addition to 6.5 miles of sandy waterfront, the park includes the Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater, where you can catch acts like Dave Matthews Band, Jimmy Buffett, and Brad Paisley this season.

Coney Island 


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It doesn’t get much more iconic than Coney Island. In addition to its world-famous amusement parks (featuring the likes of the Cyclone and the Wonder Wheel), the expansive beach offers some of the best people-watching you’ll find during summer in the city.

Long Beach


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Known for its beautiful white sandy beaches and its bustling boardwalk, Long Beach is a charming seaside village just outside of New York City. In addition to beachy activities like volleyball and surfing, Long Beach offers an arts showcase every Saturday, regular free concerts, a farmers market, and more! 

Sandy Island Beach State Park 


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An impressive freshwater dune system can be found in this sandy stretch of Lake Ontario straddling Oswego and Jefferson counties in the Thousand Islands region. In addition to beachside fun, the park offers hiking, canoeing, and bird-watching. 

Sunset Bay Beach


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This five-acre beauty is just 40 minutes south of Buffalo, but the mellow vibe is decidedly tropical. In addition to the beach overlooking the seemingly infinite Lake Erie horizon, visitors here will love the volleyball courts, waterfront restaurant, beach bar, video game arcade, ice cream shop, and more.    

Don't forget to share your summer vacation with us! Share New York State pictures on Instagram and Twitter with #ILoveNY and #iSpyNY and tag us on Facebook!