The Getaway
Best Beaches and Towns on Lake Superior

Lake Superior, the largest of the Great Lakes, stretches across borders and boundaries, touching states and provinces, each with its own unique charm. Its vast expanse is not just a body of water; it's a destination filled with hidden gems, from secluded beaches with pink pebbles to historic towns where the past is still very much alive. The lake's shores are a haven for adventurers, nature lovers, and those seeking a quiet retreat from the hustle and bustle of daily life. With over 72 beaches to choose from and countless towns, each with their own story, finding the perfect spot along Lake Superior's coastline is an adventure in itself. Whether you're drawn to the thrill of outdoor activities, the tranquility of a beach sunset, or the allure of exploring historical sites, Lake Superior has something special for everyone.

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01 Pink pebbles and serene waters

Iona's Beach on the north shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota on a sunny day.

Iona’s Beach stands out with its unique pink pebble shoreline, creating a stunning visual spectacle that's rare and captivating. The gentle sound of waves moving over the pebbles is like music, making it a perfect spot for a peaceful day by the water. The pink hue of the pebbles under the sunlight adds a magical touch to the beach, making it a photographer's paradise and a must-visit for those seeking a unique beach experience.

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02 The allure of Black Beach

Black Beach, Silver Bay, Minnesota

Black Beach in Silver Bay is a marvel with its dark sands, offering a dramatic contrast against the clear blue waters of Lake Superior. It's not just a beach; it's a statement of nature's diversity and beauty, inviting visitors to explore its mysterious charm. The dark sands are a result of volcanic rock, which not only provides a unique landscape but also a fascinating geological history for visitors to discover.

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03 Historical beacon at Brimley

A Day at the Beach. Stairway leads to a Lake Superior beach. Whitefish Bay Scenic Byway: Hiawatha National Forest. Brimley, Michigan.

Brimley Beach, within one of Michigan's oldest state parks, offers more than just sand and water. The nearby Point Iroquois Lighthouse adds a historical dimension, allowing visitors to step back in time while enjoying the scenic views of Superior's Whitefish Bay. The lighthouse, with its rich history and stunning architecture, serves as a beacon not just for ships but also for history enthusiasts and photographers drawn to its beauty.

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04 Paradise's rocky shores

Whitefish Point Beach on Lake Superior. Driftwood and Lake Superior stones litter Whitefish Point beach in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan at sunset

A short drive from Paradise, Michigan, Whitefish Point Beach offers a blend of sandy and rocky landscapes. The area is enriched by the historical Great Lake Shipwreck Museum, making it a spot where education meets relaxation. The museum, dedicated to the maritime history of Lake Superior, provides an intriguing backdrop to the natural beauty of the beach, offering insights into the lake's storied past.

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05 Tranquility at Crisp Point

As daylight begins yielding to twilight, The Crisp Point Lighthouse at sunset on Lake Superior, Upper Peninsula, Michigan, USA - A one hour drive from Tahquamenon Falls, mostly dirt roads

For those seeking solitude, Crisp Point Beach is a treasure. The sandy shores extend for miles, offering a peaceful retreat far from the nearest community. It's a place where tranquility reigns supreme, and the hustle of the world seems a distant memory. The lighthouse at Crisp Point adds to the serene atmosphere, standing as a silent guardian over the vast expanse of Lake Superior.

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06 Majestic views from Twelvemile Beach

"Footprints" Twelve Mile Beach , Pictured Rocks National Lake shore

Adjacent to the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, Twelvemile Beach boasts long stretches of sand and pebble. It's a nature lover's paradise, with the campground nearby providing stunning views right from your tent or RV. The beach is a perfect starting point for exploring the natural wonders of Pictured Rocks, offering easy access to hiking trails and scenic overlooks.

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07 Chapel Beach's hidden wonders

An Upper Peninsula forest creates an autumn background at Chapel Beach in northern Michigan. Lake Superior waves crash on the beach and white puffy clouds dot the blue sky.

Reaching Chapel Beach requires a bit of effort, but the reward is worth it. The hike reveals breathtaking views of Chapel Lake and Chapel Falls before culminating at the sandy beach with its iconic Chapel Rock, offering an adventure filled with beauty and discovery. The journey to Chapel Beach is as memorable as the destination itself, with each step through the forest bringing visitors closer to the untouched beauty of Lake Superior's shoreline.

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08 Miners Beach: A popular choice

Beautiful Michigan Landscape. Image of Miners Beach at Pictured Rock National Lakeshore, Michigan, USA.

Miners Beach is a favorite for good reason. Its sandy expanse and clear waters make it an ideal spot for swimming and paddling, surrounded by the natural beauty of the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. The beach's accessibility and stunning views make it a popular destination, yet it never feels crowded, offering a peaceful escape into nature.

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09 Sand Point's gentle waves

Sand Point Beach at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan during fall

Close to Munising, Sand Point Beach is perfect for families. The soft white sand and sheltered swimming areas, combined with picturesque views, make it a place where memories are made. The calm waters of Sand Point are ideal for young swimmers, making it a family-friendly destination where parents can relax while children play safely by the water's edge.

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10 Au Train's natural beauty

Nestled in the Hiawatha National Forest, Au Train Beach is a gateway to a plethora of outdoor activities. From swimming to boating and hiking, it's a beach that promises adventure and relaxation in equal measure. The beach's location within the national forest means it's surrounded by lush greenery, enhancing the sense of escape and connection with nature.

11 Marquette's sandy retreats

Marquette Harbor Lighthouse, in McCarty's Cove. Marquette, MI.

The sandy beaches of Marquette, including South Beach and McCarty’s Cove, offer unique attractions and amenities. From playgrounds to lifeguard supervision, they're spots where families can enjoy the beauty of Lake Superior in safety and comfort. Marquette's beaches are known for their stunning sunsets, which paint the sky in vibrant colors and provide a perfect end to a day spent by the water.

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12 Adventure at Black Rocks

Black Rock in Marquette, Michigan October 2019. This is where people come from miles away to hike then jump off into Lake Superior Tammy Clonan / Shutterstock.com

For thrill-seekers, Black Rocks Beach in Marquette provides an adrenaline rush with opportunities for cliff jumping into the deep waters of Lake Superior, surrounded by the natural beauty of Presque Isle Park. The cliffs offer a challenge to those daring enough to leap while also serving as a spectacular vantage point for those who prefer to stay dry and take in the view.

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13 Little Presque Isle's seclusion

Offering a sense of isolation, Little Presque Isle Beach is perfect for those looking to escape the crowds. It's a place where the beauty of Lake Superior can be enjoyed in peace and tranquility. The beach's clear waters and scenic surroundings make it a hidden gem for kayakers and paddleboarders, offering a quiet cove to explore.

14 Cultural immersion in Bayfield

Bayfield isn't just about beautiful beaches; it's a town rich in culture and history. From historical sites to vibrant community events, it offers a glimpse into the life and times of the region. Bayfield's charm lies in its small-town atmosphere, where visitors can enjoy local cuisine, explore art galleries, and participate in seasonal festivals that celebrate the community's heritage and natural beauty.

15 Duluth's diverse shores

Duluth, Minnesota, USA- Aug 22, 2022: Cruise Ship Viking Octantis sunrise arrival under Aerial Lift Bridge

Duluth offers a variety of beach experiences, from the sandy Park Point Beach to the rocky landscapes of Brighton Beach. It's a city where urban amenities meet the natural beauty of Lake Superior's shores. Duluth's waterfront is a hub of activity, with parks, restaurants, and attractions like the Great Lakes Aquarium, making it a perfect destination for those who want to combine beach relaxation with city exploration.

Lake Superior's beaches and towns are a testament to the lake's vastness and diversity. Each destination along its shores offers its own unique set of experiences, from the serenity of secluded beaches to the rich cultural tapestry of historic towns. The lake's natural beauty, combined with the warmth and welcoming nature of its communities, makes it a destination that calls to the heart of every traveler. Whether you're paddling the serene waters, exploring historical lighthouses, or simply enjoying the local culture, Lake Superior's shores promise unforgettable experiences and breathtaking views. So, why wait? The shores of Lake Superior are calling, ready to unveil their treasures to those willing to explore.

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