States With the Longest Shorelines

South Beach Miami skyline, Florida, USA

Alexander Spatari/Getty Images 

The United States is home to 50 different states that vary greatly in size, topography, and even in climate, due to the range of latitudes among them. Nearly half of the states of the United States are not landlocked and border the Atlantic Ocean (or its Gulf of Mexico), the Pacific Ocean, and even the Arctic Sea. Twenty-three states are adjacent to an ocean, while 27 states are landlocked.

The following list of the states with the 10 longest coastlines in the United States is arranged by length.

Numbers can vary across sources, as the length of a coastline depends on how detailed the measurements are around each inlet and bay and whether all the islands are counted (such as in Alaska and Florida's figures). Figures can also change often due to flooding, erosion, and rising sea levels. The statistics here come from World

of 10


Scenic View Of Frozen Lake Against Sky

Chavalit Likitratcharoen / EyeEm/Getty Images

Length: 33,904 mi (54,563 km)
Bordering: The Pacific Ocean and ​the Arctic Ocean

If you measure just the coast, Alaska has 6,640 miles of coastline; if you measure all inlets and bays, it's more than 47,000 miles.

of 10


Scenery from the Keys, Florida

 © Images

Length: 8,436 mi (13,576 km)
Bordering: The Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico

No matter where you are in Florida, you're never more than an hour and a half from the beach. 

of 10


New Orleans Skyline at Sunset, Louisiana

zodebala/Getty Images 

Length: 7,721 mi (12,426 km)
Bordering: The Gulf of Mexico 

The United States Geological Survey has found that Louisiana's barrier islands erode up to 66 feet (20 m) per year; these protect fragile wetlands from being inundated with saltwater, protect the coast from erosion, and dampen the force of waves that come inland from hurricanes and storms.

of 10


Pemaquid Lighthouse with Pink Roses

 Photography by Deb Snelson/Getty Images

Length: 3,478 mi (5,597 km)
Bordering: The Atlantic Ocean 

If all the miles of Maine's 3,000+ islands were taken into account, Maine would have more than 5,000 miles of coastline.

of 10


People ride bikes and walk along the beach at sunset in Santa Monica, California.

Brian Eden/Getty Images 

Length: 3,427 mi (5,515 km)
Bordering: The Pacific Ocean

Most of California's coast is rocky; the beaches made famous in all those '60s movies are only along the southern coast of the state.

of 10

North Carolina

sunrise on the beach at surf city pier in Surf City, NC

W. Drew Senter, Longleaf Photography/Getty Images 

Length: 3,375 mi (5,432 km)
Bordering: The Atlantic Ocean 

North Carolina hosts the Atlantic ​Coast's largest estuary for breeding shellfish and fish, at 2.5 million acres (10,000 sq km).

of 10


Welcome to Texas Sign

Stephen Saks/Getty Images 

Length: 3,359 mi (5,406 km)
Bordering: The Gulf of Mexico 

Millions of migrating birds take refuge in the Texas coastal wetlands in the winter—and not all are waterbirds. Migrating songbirds come there as well.

of 10


The Skyline of Rosslyn in Arlington County, Key Bridge and the Potomac River at Dusk, Virginia

 Hisham Ibrahim/Getty Images

Length: 3,315 mi (5,335 km)
Bordering: The Atlantic Ocean

The first permanent English settlement in North America was in Jamestown, Virginia, which is nearby present-day Williamsburg.

of 10


Lake Superior with Marquette Harbor Lighthouse at sunset, Marquette, Michigan

Danita Delimont/Getty Images 

Length: 3,224 mi (5,189 km)
Bordering: Lake Michigan, Lake Huron, Lake Superior, and Lake Erie

Michigan might not have ocean coastline, but having borders on four Great Lakes sure gives it a lot of shorelines, enough to make this top 10 list, anyway. It has the longest freshwater coastline in the United States.

of 10


Fells Point Baltimore Harbor

Greg Pease/Getty Images 

Length: 3,190 mi (5,130 km)
Bordering: The Atlantic Ocean

Sea levels are rising around Maryland's Chesapeake Bay, with some of the issues due to climate change. At the same time, the land along the coast is sinking, making the difference over time all the more dramatic.

mla apa chicago
Your Citation
Rosenberg, Matt. "States With the Longest Shorelines." ThoughtCo, Aug. 27, 2020, Rosenberg, Matt. (2020, August 27). States With the Longest Shorelines. Retrieved from Rosenberg, Matt. "States With the Longest Shorelines." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 10, 2023).