Looking for a winter escape? You don't have to travel to the South Pacific for tan lines and white sandy beaches. Here are 10 great options to escape the chills - no overnight flight needed!

Some of these sandy destinations may surprise the traditional Caribbean traveler- how about a beach vacation in Alabama or Louisiana?  Beaches like those in Grand Isle - just two hours from New Orleans - are actually a great winter bet.  First of all, for fishermen, there's no place better. Secondly, there aren't nearly as many crowds in midwinter.

In many of the continental U.S. destinations, travelers have the opportunity to visit popular spots that would be swarming with tourists in the summer. Plus, with water temperatures in the mid to high 60's in Southern California and the Gulf of Mexico, it's still warm enough for a swim. Some of the locals may think you're a bit crazy, but compared to the numbing oceans of the Northern U.S. and Canada, it feels like bath water.

Other destinations like Puerto Rico and Hawaii are in peak season as visitors flee from cold climates. Here, it's important to find beaches off the usual tourist path.

This winter, trade in a snow shovel for a sand shovel, a wool suit for a bathing suit, and an orange spray tan for a real suntan. Whether you're envisioning laying on a beach in Puerto Rico, snorkeling in the Virgin Islands, or hiking the California bluffs, this top 10 list has a destination for every type of beach lover.

Press Start to enjoy the ten warmest, most beautiful beaches in America this winter.