Coastal Living names Beaufort 'America's Happiest Seaside Town'

The lighthouse at Hunting Island State Park near Beaufort.
The lighthouse at Hunting Island State Park near Beaufort.

BEAUFORT COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Beaufort tops Coastal Living's second annual list of "America's Happiest Seaside Towns."

The complete list of the 10 best places to live by the sea, as ranked by consumers, will be featured in the June issue of Coastal Living..

Coastal Living editors unveiled their list of the 10 "Happiest Seaside Towns" in the February issue and invited America to vote for their favorite. Consumers could vote hourly from Jan. 10 to February 28 online or via smartphone. Fans rallied around their favorite towns and voted often. Beaufort came in first place followed by Harwich Port, Massachusetts.

"It was incredible to see such enthusiasm from our readers," said Coastal Living Editor-in-Chief Antonia van der Meer. "People take great pride in their home towns and we at Coastal Living, along with the people of Beaufort, are thrilled to share their happy little secret with the rest of America."

Coastal Living announces "America's Happiest Seaside Towns" 2013 in order as ranked by consumers:

1. Beaufort, SC

2. Harwich Port, MA

3. Sanibel Island, FL

4. Sag Harbor, NY

5. Newport, RI

6. Rowayton, CT

7. Kennebunkport, ME

8. Pā'ia Town, Maui, HI

9. La Jolla, CA

10. Pescadero, CA

Coastal Living chose its 2013 "America's Happiest Seaside Towns" finalists based on criteria that included ranking on the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, percentage of sunny days, healthiness of beaches, commute times, walkability, standard of living and financial well-being of the locals, geographic diversity, and an editorial assessment of "coastal vibe." Coastal locations named as "America's Happiest Seaside Towns" in 2012 were not eligible to make the current list.

For the full list of towns, visit