America?s ?Happiest? Seaside Towns [SLIDESHOW]

  @MarkJohansonIBT on May 15 2012 1:43 PM
  • No. 2 Naples, Florida
    Coastal Living said Naples lives up to its Italian namesake and international reputation: “With rich cultural offerings (including resident orchestral and theater groups), this town of just fewer than 20,000 people offers big-city-pay-offs minutes from beaches with some of the finest snowy white sand in the region.” REUTERS
  • No. 3 Sausalito, California
    This town just north of the Golden Gate Bridge and surrounded by a lush recreation area has one of the only open marinas on San Francisco Bay’s coast. Coast Living notes: “The zeitgeist here echoes its bohemian roots as an artists' colony while also hosting well-heeled inhabitants.” REUTERS
  • No. 6 Laguna Beach, California
    Laguna Beach, of MTV fame, is as beautiful in person as it is on TV. Coastal Living says: “From its founding as an artists' colony, Laguna Beach embraces the diverse, with funky downtown restaurants, surfing culture, and a summer full of art festivals.” REUTERS
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For Coastal Living's special 15th anniversary edition, the magazine scoured the U.S. for America's Happiest Seaside Towns.

Editors picked the seaside hamlets from Coastal Living's existing Dream Towns, featured in the magazine over the past 15 years. They also placed a call out for entries on social media channels and funneled the results through the Gallup-Healthways Index, which ranks towns based on percentage of sunny and clear days, average commute times, healthiness of beaches, crime, and diversity, among other factors.

By ranking the top 15 happiest seaside communities, we draw attention to places where life is good and the beach is close by, the magazine's editor-in-chief, Antonia van der Meer, said in a statement.

The 15th anniversary issue of Costal Living, a Time Inc. publication, hit newsstands Friday with the magazine's first-ever ranking of places to live and visit along the American coast.

With 840 miles of coastline, it's no surprise that California towns placed high on the list, taking four of the top 10 spots. Massachusetts also fared well with four towns in the top 15.

Just missing the top 10 were Marblehead, Mass.; Stinson Beach, Calif.; Cohasset, Mass.; Duxbury, Mass.; and Solomons Island, Md. Press Start for a look at the 10 seaside towns that topped the list as the happiest in America.

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