USA Today took recommendations from “local experts” across the country to select one great beach in each state and the District of Columbia. Greg Breining, author of Paddle North: Canoeing the Boundary Waters-Quetico Wilderness, was Minnesota’s expert. He recommended Park Point.
Minnesota’s best beach lies on 6-mile-long Park Point, which shields Duluth’s harbor from the furious storms of Lake Superior. Though the water is rarely warm enough for swimming without a wetsuit, the beach is a great spot to watch incoming waves, giant saltwater freighters and Great Lakes ore carriers passing under Duluth’s signature Aerial Lift Bridge, and to spot birds that rest on the point during spring and fall migrations. The Park Point Nature Trail follows the beach and occasionally passes old-growth pine and tamarack.