Coronado beach
A stretch of sand in Coronado. Photo via @CoronadoCity Twitter

Coronado has found a home among Dr. Beach’s Top 10 Beaches.

Florida International University professor Stephen Leatherman, known to many as Dr. Beach, releases his famed list each year ahead of Memorial Day weekend. 

Coronado is a mainstay, this year rounding out the Top 10, while also being the only California beach to make the cut.

He called Coronado Beach “the toast of Southern California” and a “veritable oasis by the sea.”

Duke Kahanamoku in Hawaii earned his top spot because of its white coral sand and clear water. It doesn’t hurt, Leatherman said, that an volcano crater sits as its backdrop at the west end of Waikiki Beach and it’s also the widest beach on a world-famous stretch.

Hawaii claimed two other slots – Wailea Beach in Maui at No. 3 and Poipu Beach in Kauai at No. 7.

Leatherman has selected the Top 10 Beaches since 1991. Previous national winners are retired and listed on his web site.

Fifty criteria are used to evaluate beaches, including water and sand quality as well as safety and management. He awards bonus points for beaches with smoking bans. 

Leatherman is a coastal scientist who has published 20 books and hundreds of scientific articles and reports about storm impacts, coastal erosion and ways to improve beach health and safety.