Best of Broward / Palm Beach

Ten Reasons Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Is the Best Beach in Broward

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5. 101 Ocean

Every beautiful topnotch beach needs an upscale, VIP-style restaurant. For Lauderdale-by-the-Sea. 101 Ocean (101 Commercial Blvd., Lauderdale-by-the-Sea) is that place. Every beach has a stretch of bars and restaurants, but few have an establishment right on the beach that checks all the boxes like 101 Ocean does. Classy decor mixed with a menu that will have you wondering why you ever make the trip to South Beach is the biggest draw, but in the end everyone wants to be at 101 Ocean due to its central location to everything at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea. It's the perfect place to grab a seat at the bar, drink a beer, and move on. 
4. Prime real estate leading up to the beach isn't wasted on parking spaces.

What do most beaches have in common? Your view is being blocked by seven Kia SUVs. At Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, you don't need to be on the beach or elevated above the beach to see the beach. Traffic is blocked off well before the beach starts, creating a sort of festival like feeling every day of the week. People hang around, talk, snack, drink, or read. Basically, you can see people doing things here we all did before we became a slave to our smartphones. It's refreshing to see an atmosphere where people aren't packed onto the beach, fighting for the next great parking space, and pissing each other off. 
3. Laspadas 

There are only a precious few Laspadas (233 Commercial Blvd., Lauderdale-by-the-Sea) on this planet, and Lauderdale-by-the-Sea is home to one of them. This alone should catapult it to the top of any beach list. Finding the perfect food to munch on at the beach isn't always the easiest thing. You need to factor in the elements when picking the perfect beach food; some just don't stand up in 40 mph winds. A solid Laspadas sub that comes wrapped in your standard ten feet of art paper is not one of those weak foods. There is one thing better than a Laspadas sub on the beach, and they named a drink after it. 

2. The chill areas are super chill.

A common theme is starting to arise here: Lauderdale-by-the-Sea is the chillest beach ever. Littered throughout this beach are areas that beg you to sit down with your Laspadas sub and read a book. What sets this beach apart is that there are so many covered areas where you can chill. Most beaches lack this feature or try to sell you umbrellas by-the-hour to achieve it.

We don't ask for much. What we really want out of a great beach is to enjoy the beach. Whoever designed Lauderdale-by-the-Sea gets that and built accordingly.
1. The uncrowded  beach.

If there is one thing that can ruin a great beach, it's other people. People are the worst. The above picture was taken on a Friday at 4 p.m. Otherwise known as a primetime, the beach should be populated with people coming and going. Lauderdale-by-the-Sea somehow stays small-town busy — just enough people to keep it from being weird, but few enough that you don't have to elbow a boogie-boarding kid off the area of beach you've claimed for the afternoon. 

A beach can be totally flawed in every area up to the point when you hit the beach; that's where it can totally redeem itself. Lauderdale-by-the-Sea needs no redeeming. Its got the Best Beach title locked up well before you step a toe into the sand. 
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Ryan Yousefi is a freelance writer for Miami New Times, a lover of sports, and an expert consumer of craft beer and pho. Hanley Ramirez once stole a baseball from him and to this day still owes him $10.
Contact: Ryan Yousefi