The white crescent-shaped sand beach located in Kauai, Hawaii has been named America’s number 1by international expert on beaches and coastal processes, Dr. Stephen P. Leatherman.

This spectacular remote, two-mile long strand is lined by palm trees with a backdrop of waterfalls and mountain peaks ranging up to 4,000 feet high.

The sheer beauty of Hanalei Bay is breathtaking, said Leatherman, director of Florida International University's Laboratory for Coastal Research. It's really an idyllic setting.

Hanalei beat out other shores stretching from San Diego to Cape Cod.

Dr Beach has been annually selecting the nation’s top 10 beaches since 1991, using fifty criteria which include looking at water, cleanliness, sand quality as well as safety, facilities and environmental management.

Leatherman has more than 30 years of scientific experience studying storm impacts, erosion, and ways to improve beach health and safety as well as knowledge as Ph.D coastal scientist making his selections unique.

Leathermans top 10 beaches for 2009 are:

1. Hanalei Bay, Kauai, Hawaii

2. Siesta Beach, Sarasota, Florida

3. Coopers Beach, Southampton, New York

4. Coronado Beach, San Diego, California

5. Hamoa Beach, Maui, Hawaii

6. Main Beach, East Hampton, New York

7. Cape Hatteras, Outer Banks of North Carolina

8. Cape Florida State Park, Key Biscayne, Florida

9. Coast Guard Beach, Cape Cod, Massachusetts

10. Beachwalker Park, Kiawah Island, South Carolina