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When most people think of York, Maine, they're thinking about York Beach, with its long stretches of sand and Ocean Avenue, lined with candy shops, souvenir stores and boutiques.




York Beach, ranged along aptly-named Long Beach Avenue and Ocean Avenue (map), is the most popular and populous of the Yorks in Maine.

Long Sands Beach is just that: a l-o-n-g beach backed by Long Beach Avenue, extending from Lobster Cove in York Harbor to the south, all the way to Cape Neddick in the north (map).

At high tide, Long Sands Beach is fairly narrow. At low tide there's plenty of room for everyone. Click here to check tide times. Parking places along the beach on Long Beach Avenue are filled by mid-morning on any hot summer day.

Long Beach Avenue has several hotels, inns and snack and food stands to provide you with necessities during your day at the beach.

Short Sands Beach, on the northern side of Cape Neddick, is shorter but deeper than Long Sands Beach, and has this advantage: the commercial center of York Beach is ranged along Ocean Avenue just inland from the water (map), so you have easy access to hotels, inns, snack stands, cafes, restaurants, games arcade, York Beach Amusement Park & Zoo, clothing boutiques, souvenir shops and other services.

Among my favorite places is The Goldenrod, on Ocean Avenue at Railroad Avenue, a restaurant, cafe and candy store where you can see old-fashioned salt water taffy being pulled, rolled and wrapped by ingenious taffy-pulling machines.

The Fun-o-rama is an old-time New England games arcade with Skee-Ball, pinball, video game booths, electric shock machines, punch-the-bully and more. Bring a lot of quarters!

Although Short Sands Beach is much shorter, it is also deeper, particularly at low tide, when the broad swath of sand allows everyone plenty of personal space. Click here to check tide times.

It's less than two miles from Ocean Avenue to Sohier Park and Nubble Light at the tip of Cape Neddick. If the weather is not too hot, you can walk there in 30 to 45 minutes.

—by Tom Brosnahan

Old York Village

Cape Neddick

York Harbor

Tourist Information

About York

Maine's Southern Coast

Maine Highlights

Maine Homepage


Paris Girls Secret Society, the new novel by Tom Brosnahan


Long Sands Beach, York ME

Above, high tide at Long Sands Beach.

Below, Short Sands Beach, York Beach ME.

Short Sands Beach, York ME



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