Think the best beaches in the US are only found on the coasts? Think again.
Clinch Park is the most popular <a href="http://www.travelchannel.com/topics/beaches/index.html">beach</a> in Traverse City, MI, since it's just minutes from downtown, close to the Clinch Park Marina and adjacent to the zoo.
On Lake Michigan, Bradford Beach offers volleyball courts for pick-up games, room for families to spread out and build sand castles, food carts serving Wisconsin cheddar cheese curds and more.
Once called "America's Hidden Riviera," Sleeping Bear Dunes on the north side of Lake Michigan has 2 things lacking on Lake Superior: swimming beaches and loads of sand. While some dunes rise over 450 feet, the 150-foot dune climb is more manageable for families with small children and still offers serene views.
Kohler-Andrae State Park is an expansive --nearly 1,000 acres --natural area on the western shore of Lake Michigan. Roughly 50 miles north of Milwaukee, the beach is popular for its sand dunes, cordwalk (a walkway made from boards and rope), nature trails and 137 campsites.
Don't let the name fool you, this state park in Two Rivers, WI, has 6 miles of Lake Michigan shoreline, sand dunes and the Rawley Point Lighthouse, which has been maintained and operated by the U.S. Coast Guard since 1853.
Watch boats bob in Racine Yacht Club's marina, kayak around the harbor or listen to live music on this impeccably clean beach in Racine, WI.
Palm trees mere minutes from Michigan Avenue? It’s true. Opened in 1890, this popular white-sand beach stretches beneath Chicago's Magnificent Mile skyscrapers.
Lake Calhoun is part of the Chain of Lakes and the largest lake in Minneapolis, MN. Of its 3 swimming beaches, North Beach is popular for swimming (of course), biking on the lake's 3-mile trail and (happily) lining up for a bite at Tin Fish, a casual seafood-fry restaurant.
Lake Superior’s Park Point is located on the world's largest sand bar (just over 7 miles), east of Duluth's famed Aerial Lift Bridge.
White sands, green pines, blue lake and black rocks -- the view from this Marquette, MI, peninsula can't be beat, especially from Sunset Point. Another sight to behold, brave cliff divers plunge into the icy Lake Superior below.