- Things to Do
- Plan Your Trip
BEST BEACH FOR: Families who don’t want to be in the surf zone, so that their kids can play in the water right in front of them.
Heading south, St. Ann’s Beach is the first in a string of surf beaches that continues with Thalia, Oak, and Brooks. In the summers, the beach itself is split – with one section being in the Thalia surf zone and another section reserved for body boarders and swimmers. It’s also not as steep as the beaches just a few steps south, meaning that it’s not nearly as common to see skim boarders here.
Access-wise, St. Ann’s Beach has managed to fly under the radar a little. The common activity along this stretch is to drop onto the sand with a pile of boards, a few beach tennis paddles, and an umbrella, to make a day of it. If that’s your plan, you can typically find a bit more space at St. Ann’s than at Thalia. The rock reef also keeps the water nice and clear here. It’s fun to wade in and see tiny fish darting left and right along the shoreline.
In the winter, St. Ann’s is really more of a surf beach than anything else – with shifting tides exposing more and more of the rock shelf and leaving less sand. If you’re a relative beginner, especially on a foam board, the break where the south end of St. Ann’s meets the north end of Thalia is historically beloved by locals and visitors alike.
The summer lifeguards, who patiently explain over and over where the surf zone ends and the swimming area begins.
Families who don’t want to be in the surf zone, so that their kids can play in the water right in front of them.