For the fourth time in six years, Tripadvisor's No. 1 Beach in the U.S. is in St. Pete / Clearwater. For 2021, St. Pete Beach is the No. 1 beach in the country and No. 5 in the world as rated by Tripadvisor's online community. Madeira Beach was ranked No. 9, Treasure Island No. 16 and Clearwater Beach No. 18. St. Pete / Clearwater was the only Florida destination with a beach in the Top 10, let alone two.
The Tripadvisor rankings put St. Pete Beach in the top slot, but a number of Pinellas beaches made the list.
St. Pete Beach has been named the best beach in the nation based on Tripadvisor’s annual Travelers ’Choice rankings, moving up from its second-place spot in 2020.
It beats out beaches in Hawaii, California, and even other beaches in Pinellas. Madeira Beach was ranked ninth, Treasure Island Beach 16th and Clearwater Beach at the 18th slot.
St. Pete Beach last took home the top spot in 2012, according to Visit St. Pete-Clearwater. Their website credits the award to the white sand beaches, warm gulf waters, beautiful sunsets and uncrowded space.
Globally, St. Pete Beach was ranked the fifth-best beach by Tripadvisor. It is the only beach in the continental United States to make the global list.
“We take Tripadvisor’s awards very seriously in St. Pete/Clearwater,” Steve Hayes, president and CEO of Visit St. Pete/Clearwater, said in a statement. “We have been home to the No. 1 beach for four of the past six years, but after a devastating 2020 for travel, we’re especially honored to receive the Traveler's Choice Award this year. Our communities, including St. Pete Beach and Madeira Beach, have done an amazing job building these great destinations and keeping their beaches pristine for travelers from near and far.”
"I just think it continues to raise our awareness as an international destination," Hayes said. "And if they start exploring further they’re gonna find out there’s three more beaches that are ranked in the top 25 in the U.S."
Tripadvisor calls itself the world’s largest travel guidance platform. Each year the company puts together user-submitted reviews and rankings and honors them in the Travelers' Choice Best of the Best awards. Along with beaches, the website ranks restaurants, national parks, popular destinations, emerging destinations and more.