Beachcomber’s Paradise: Five of the Best Beaches for Seashells

With the winter finally gone in most parts of the country, it means the beaches are beginning to be open for business again. For seashell hunters, this is the best news they’ve heard all year!

If you’ve ever grown up near the beach, or spent any time vacationing in a beach cottage, you know seashells are a vital part of any decor. And the best part? You can contribute to your own creations by collecting some of your own beautiful pieces.

However, it’s important to know, when it comes to collecting seashells, not all beaches across the United States are created equal. There are some that stand head and shoulders above the rest for being the best spots for seashell hunters.

Beachcombers who are looking to add some of the most beautiful and unique shells to their collections should bring their buckets to these beaches this summer!

Cumberland Island National Seashore

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While it can be hard to find epic stretches of beach that are virtually untouched along the Eastern seaboard, the Cumberland Island National Seashore in Georgia delivers. Featuring approximately seventeen miles of unspoiled beaches (they can only be reached via ferry), this is the perfect spot to find many untouched seashells. Plus, you might share the beach with some four-legged natives!

Calvert Cliffs State Park

For Mid-Atlantic residents, the beaches around Maryland’s Calvert Cliffs State Park and nearby Flag Ponds Nature Park offer more than just your typical beachcombing experience. Since these beaches are just off a deep ancient trench in the ocean floor of the Chesapeake, the seashells that often wash up on shore are fossilized, and very special.

Ocracoke Island

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The Outer Banks of North Carolina are known to be spectacular beaches already, but at the northern tip on Ocracoke Island you’ll find a true gem for finding seashells. Since this island is sparsely populated and virtually untouched by normal tourists looking for shells, you’ll find an incredible collection all over the beach, especially in the days after a storm.

San Jose Island

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Around the Gulf of Mexico, the area stretching from Galveston to Corpus Christi is home to the best beaches for seashells in the country. Since the area is popular with beachcombers, head further south along the barrier islands to the less traveled San Jose Island. Located adjacent to the protected Matagorda Island Wildlife area you’ll get some good finds.

Sanibel Island

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Saving the best for last is the Mecca of seashell finds: Sanibel Island. This Florida hotspot is not only home to amazing beaches and breathtaking sunsets, but also is known as the best beach for seashells in America. You are hard pressed to walk just a few feet without wanting to stop and pick up a dozen of beautiful shells.

Sanibel Island is also home to the Bailey-Matthews Shell Museum (for that occasional rainy day).

Where are some of your favorites beaches for seashells? Let us know in the comments!