During a recent trip to California, I immediately fell in love with Long Beach. This area is located just 25 miles south of Los Angeles and has some of the most accessible beaches.
There is also a dog beach next to the mat, known as Rosie’s Dog Beach. I really enjoyed sitting here and watching all the dogs run off leash and splash around in the water. I honestly daydream about this beach often, as I absolutely love both beaches and dogs.
Granada Beach also has accessible companion care restrooms near the parking area. This is the perfect scenario to enjoy a day at the beach with your loved ones. I was impressed with the 5.5-mile-long paved pathway that connects this beach to various other beaches. It is very accessible, and I was able to roll from here to Alamitos Beach in my own wheelchair.
- Alamitos Beach also had a beach access mat. It did not extend quite as close to the water as the Granada Beach mat, but it was still very nice. This beach also offers complimentary beach wheelchairs. Call 562-570-1360 to request yours.
South Padre Island Beach, Texas
Along the 3-mile stretch of Gulf Boulevard, you will find the beach in South Padre Island, Texas, which, in my opinion, is one of the best wheelchair accessible beaches in the U.S.
- The city offers 6 amphibious beach chairs that can go both on sand and in the water, and they can be used free of charge! Call the South Padre Island Fire Department at 956-761-3040 to reserve one of these awesome beach wheelchairs prior to heading out for the day.
- This beach also has plenty of accessible parking spots and ramp access to the beach. I love the 12 Mobi-Mats along this beach in case you prefer to relax for the day in your own personal wheelchair and enjoy the wind on your face from the ocean breeze.
Lake Michigan Beach, Ludington, Michigan
I loved my visit to Lake Michigan and was blown away, not only at the size of Lake Michigan, but also the accessibility of the beaches there!
- Lake Michigan Beach at Ludington State Park has an access mat on the sand. This allows you to be comfortable and remain in your own wheelchair while enjoying the gorgeous views of Lake Michigan.
- If you prefer to roll a little further across the sand, the park also offers manual beach wheelchairs on a first-come, first-served basis at the Beach House and at Ludington State Park’s Hamlin Lake concession stand.
- What makes this beach even more unique is its famous lighthouse, North Breakwater Light. This lighthouse sits half a mile out in Lake Michigan from Stearns Park Beach, which also has a beach access mat and offers beach wheelchairs for rent.
- There is a wheelchair accessible, half-mile break wall that is smoothly paved and easy to roll on that takes you from the shore to the lighthouse. You may want to take it slow and easy, as there are no sides or guard rails on either side, but what a view once you are at the base of the lighthouse looking back at the beach!
The five beaches listed above have made me love traveling as a wheelchair user even more. When cities take pride in their destinations and make them accessible for all to enjoy, I want to promote them, visit them, and give kudos where kudos are due. So, start planning your next beach getaway today to one or all these incredible beaches and get ready to get some sand on those tires and enjoy the sights and sounds of the waves lapping against these accessible shores.