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Subject: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: ArcticFox on 04/10/17 at 3:21 am

This is for people who have been to both.

So where do you guys and gals prefer?

California was named after a fictional paradise island inhabited by the Amazons in the novel The Adventures of Esplandián. California is first and foremost known for its Mediterranean climate, which exists on the coast. The northern part of the state is Cold-Summer Mediterranean, while the southern part of the state is Warm-Summer Mediterranean (which you can also find in places like Spain, France, Greece, and Italy).

Southern California/SoCoal is world renown for their long and wide beaches. They are defined by dramatic landscapes, such as rocks, steep cliffs, rolling hills, and distant mountains. As someone who has been to the beaches in California multiple times, I can say with certainty that there are many pros and cons to this region's coasts. Let's start with the pros: Large waves, but lacking in the violent currents of the Atlantic Ocean. Great for surfing. It doesn't get too hot outside, and the arid climate keeps it from raining almost all year, so you'll always be comfortable. The breeze that you get from the waves feels euphoric on a hot summer day. It really does!

Northern California/NorCal/NoCal or whatever you want to call it doesn't really have any notable beaches with the exception of Santa Cruz. That place is quite up from San Francisco!

California beaches, however, have some very, very fatal flaws. The Pacific Ocean is absolutely freezing; you'll be scared to enter the water the moment the tips of your toes touch the tide. That's why there are no hurricanes. The Mediterranean climate works against this as well—it's never going to be hot enough outside inland for someone to be able to enjoy the water. You have to use a wetsuit, which is what most surfers do. The sea floors on the coast become steep very, very quickly (like, within 20 feet from the tide). I have treaded water shoulder deep in Huntington Beach and I felt like my organs were practically shutting down! This was in SoCal in the summer. I can't possibly imagine what Northern California must be like.

While the surrounding scenery is very dramatic and breathtaking, the beaches themselves aren't out of this world. The sand is yellow, and the ocean ranges from dark blue to even straight-up brown. Another problem I have with California is that you have to walk very far distances to get from solid ground to the shore, which isn't comfortable. The sand is hot, there is some garbage, a lot of twigs, sharp shells are everywhere, and the ground is also pretty hard. If you have to pee, it is just not a fun experience.

Southern California
1) Huntington Beach (I've been there so many times)
2) Long Beach (Ditto)
3) Malibu

Northern California
1) Santa Cruz
2) Black Sand Beach
3) Gray Whale Cove

La Florida (Spanish for "The Land of the Flowers") is known for their beautiful, pristine beaches all around. But there are differences. The panhandle and west coast of the state belong to the Gulf of Mexico. Here, the sand is so white, you feel like you are walking on sugar. The water is so warm and placid, it feels like bathwater. From Pensacola all the way down to Naples, it really does feel like a dream. You can enter the water and not freeze your butt off unlike the California beaches! Stepping in and enjoying the soft water, the soft sand, the sunshine, and the lack of wind makes for an excellent laid-back weekend or vacation. On Spring Break though, this place is to be avoided, as the Gulf Coast and especially the panhandle are hotspots for college students looking to throw parties on the cheap.

Most of South Florida and all of the east coast of the state are on the Atlantic Ocean, from Fernandina Beach all the way to Miami, the beaches here are also hard to beat. On this side of the state, the sand looks almost as nice as the Gulf Coast, but the Atlantic Coast has more waves, as the Atlantic Ocean has been known throughout history for being very, very stormy. The culture here tends to match that of the water—wild, crazy, and full of non-stop partying practically all year-round. Unlike the Gulf Coast, the Atlantic side is bustling pretty much all of the year, with the exception of the northern part of the state as it actually gets very cold up there.

The vast majority of Florida with the exception of South Florida consists of a Humid Subtropical climate, while South Florida has a Tropical climate. Being extremely low elevation, surrounded by the water, and close to the equator, the state is by far the most humid state. In the summer, practically all of the state has identical weather—it's the winter when the differences begin to show. For instance, Fort Lauderdale is much, much, much warmer than Tampa is and especially the panhandle in the colder months of the year. With the very thick moisture in the air, Florida can actually feel pretty cold from November to March (to me as someone from Texas, anyway).

Florida Panhandle
1) Pensacola
2) Destin
3) Seaside (I've been there!!)
4) Panama City

Florida's West Coast
1) Tampa
2) Clearwater
3) Sarasota
4) St. Petersburg

South Florida
1) Naples
2) Miami Beach
3) South Beach
4) Fort Lauderdale
5) West Palm Beach

Florida's East Coast
1) St. Augustine
2) Daytona Beach
3) Cocoa Beach

South Padre Island, Texas

South Padre Island is a resort city at the very bottom of the state of Texas. I haven't been there, but I live only four hours away. Going to check it out this summer after my semester ends. #blessed

As everyone knows, SPI is absolutely crazy on Spring Break, even though June and July are the city's busiest months. This is for good reason—South Padre Island is the only good beach in Texas (seriously, everything else sucks). From what I've seen, read, watched, and heard from my friends, the sand is in much better condition than the rest of TX (about a light shade of beige), complete with palm trees, a warm Humid Subtropical climate, and a surprising amount of space. The water is a mix of emerald green and teal, but of a darker shade and the water is a little murky; and apparently there are some times of the year where the water doesn't look that good. Belonging to the Gulf of Mexico, the water is warm, but the waves are surprisingly large (not comparable to Cali tho). I hear SPI, like Florida, has an issue with riptides at times. It looks kind of like a second-rate Cancun (no hate on SPI, it looks wonderful). Here I have some pictures.©-Valentin-Armianu-Dreamstime-26135685-1000x491.jpg

With that being said, I prefer the Florida beaches. California is just too unorthodox for my liking; the water is too cold, and the weather is too cool. When I go to the beach, I wanna get in the water—not sit there and get sand on my sticky legs and arms. I honestly prefer humid climates over arid ones. The Gulf Coast is absolute heaven! It looks too good to be true, but it's not! However, the west coast beaches are superior because the panhandle society and culture is very redneck, rural, blue-collar, and backwards. The west coast (Tampa) is much more carefree and liberating, while not being progressive and downright immoral like California is (even South Florida isn't like that). In the end, I'm just stating my own opinion. Anyways, what are your thoughts?

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: nally on 04/10/17 at 1:13 pm

This is interesting. I have actually been to only those of California, since I have lived in said state my entire life. And I really enjoy visiting them. (In fact, I currently live less than ten miles from one.)

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: ArcticFox on 04/11/17 at 10:41 pm

Hello? Anyone?  :-\\

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: Baltimoreian on 04/12/17 at 9:29 am

Hawaii has the best beaches in the United States. Even though I've never been to the island before.

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: karen on 04/12/17 at 9:35 am

Hello? Anyone?  :-\\

I bet not many people have been to both.  I found most Americans tend not to travel that far from their home state.

I've been to beaches in Florida and California and I can honestly say that I don't recall any major differences between the beaches I visited that would make me prefer one over the other.  Though the walruses we saw in Cali were cool.

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: 2001 on 04/12/17 at 9:36 am

Hello? Anyone?  :-\\

Not many people have been to both. I've been to Florida, but I didn't go the beach, I had a pool at my resort.  :-X

edit: beaten haha

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: Indy Gent on 04/13/17 at 1:06 am

The only beach I have been to on any coast is Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. It was nice in that everyone stayed orderly and the beach was rather clean. I also liked the scent of all the suntan lotion. The only qualm I would have is that it's rather expensive in the summer and I only had a few travelers checks that I could use.

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: TheKid99 on 04/13/17 at 6:47 am

Florida beaches are GREAT(especially on the Gulf)...... warm waters, white sand beaches... ahhhh. :)

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: nally on 04/14/17 at 5:29 pm

Hawaii has the best beaches in the United States. Even though I've never been to the island before.

I've not been there, but it is on my bucket list of places to visit. I'm sure it's awesome over there.

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: Katluver on 04/22/17 at 7:42 pm

Haven't been to the California beaches, but I currently live in the Pacific Northwest so I guess there are some similarities in terms of the quality of the beaches. 
The water is normally freezing up here except for hot summer days, and even then there's a difference between the water and the surrounding air.  The sand is horrible as well with it being so pebbly in some areas that wearing footwear is strongly recommended to get to the water.

When I was living out east, I remember the beaches seemed to be better when I would visit Florida and even Myrtle Beach in South Carolina with the sand being like powder sugar.  The waters were definitely warmer, and I would even jump in the waves in Myrtle Beach during March Break without any problems.  The water seems to be a little prettier out east, especially in Florida (absolutely gorgeous there!).  The only drawback is that it seems that the beaches in Florida seems to be more infested with sharks?

Subject: Re: California Beaches vs Florida Beaches

Written By: AL-B Mk. III on 04/23/17 at 10:53 am

I think the best beach I've been to had to have been Siesta Key on the Gulf Coast of Florida. The sand there was so fine that it felt like I was walking in flour.

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