As summer edges closer, it’s becoming all the more appealing to block out a few beach days with nothing but our favorite paperback and sunscreen. And while ideally that would look like going off the grid on a pink sanded shore somewhere, the next best thing would be figuring out how to escape without crushing our budget.
Below are ten home-away-from-homes that get us near a sunny coast for a fraction of the resort’s cost. Bon voyage!
1. Colibri Cottage – St. Augustine, FL
This recently remodel sleeps five and offers a saltwater pool, spacious kitchen and plenty of outdoor lounge space. Gather up the home’s available chairs, umbrella, sand toys and cruiser and make the short walk to the neighborhood beach. Pet-friendly with a fee.
2. The Blue Crab – Galveston Island, TX
Built in 1945 and just two blocks from the seawall, this 490-square foot nugget offers the best of both worlds: quaint local living coupled with modern convenience. Tiny but mighty, this place offers two bedrooms (sleeps four), a full-size washer and dryer, driveway for one (plus additional street parking permits) and tons of charm. Located in the San Jacinto neighborhood and surrounded by 19th-century architecture. See if you can find the Franklin-Wandless house, once owned by Benjamin Franklin’s daughter. It’s located nearby.
3. BellaRustica Cottage – Saint Simons Island, GA
Though you’re just two miles from the beach, you may not want to leave this Italian-inspired, fully-renovated, dog-friendly cottage that sleeps seven. The kitchen alone is worth camping out in (look up additional photos of it right. now.), but the rest of this place is also a “green” treat — all paint, cleaning and laundry supplies are either organic or earth-friendly.
4. Southern Charm – Rosemary Beach, FL
Grab a morning donut from The Donut Hole, which is right around the corner from this brand-new, 3bed/2.5 bath home in South Walton, before making the quick bike ride up 30A to Rosemary Beach. Or, stay right where you are and just cross the street — beach access abounds here. You won’t need a car your entire stay.
5. Mediterranean Apartment – West Palm Beach, FL
Steps from the intracoastal waterway is this historic, resort-style apartment (sleeping two) that any Golden Girl at heart is sure to love. In between scuba diving, paddle-boarding, kayaking and jet skiing (all of which are available nearby) dip in the available pool and hot tub before strolling the short blocks to downtown West Palm Beach and Clematis Street.
6. Oceanview Roof – Venice Beach, CA
Literally steps from sand, this newly-renovated 1/bed apartment sleeps four is perfect for experiencing the heart of LA’s Venice Beach with a budget in mind. People-watch on the infamous boardwalk, dip your toes in the crisp Pacific and cap your stay with a cruise along Abbot Kinney (dinner at Gjelina is a must).
7. Hamptons Private Guest Cottage – Montauk, NY
Explore Westhampton and Quogue beaches from this bright, cozy guest house that sleeps three. Its peaceful setting makes a great place to unwind after a sun-indulgent day shopping the area’s boutiques and visiting its restaurants, vineyards, golf courses and farms. Bonus: Hammock included.
8. Beach Container Home – Carolina Beach, NC
Upcyclers will appreciate this sleek and modern beach cottage made out of a shipping container — technically two homes are available side by side. A short walk from Carolina Beach State Park, this is an easy spot to rest between waves and imbibing on local craft brews. (This is North Carolina, after all.) Don’t forget to try the outdoor teak shower.
9. Modern Beach House – Del Mar, CA
Soak up the abundant natural light in this ‘Nano House,’ based on the idea that less is more, located just north of San Diego and within walking distance from the beach. It’s perfect for a minimalist’s weekend, whether playing a round of golf at Torrey Pines or biking the palm-lined streets.
10. Bohème at the Beach – Destin, FL
With the crystal sand calling your name right outside the balcony, you may not spend any time in this adorable boho beach pad. Enjoy your private beach access or walk to the Noriega public beach where the locals scuba dive and snorkel.