OCRACOKE, N.C. — A wild expanse on North Carolina’s Outer Banks has earned the top spot on an annual list of America’s best beaches.
Ocracoke Island’s Lifeguarded Beach is the No. 1 stretch of sand for 2022, according to coastal scientist Stephen Leatherman, also known as “Dr. Beach.”
Leatherman, a professor and director of the Laboratory for Coastal Research at Florida International University, has been ranking America’s best beaches since 1991.
He uses 50 criteria to evaluate 650 public beaches in the US. The criteria include beach width, sand softness, water temperature and color, wildlife and more.