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10 Most Beautiful Blue Water Destinations in the U.S.

Nothing says vacation getaway like crystal-clear turquoise oceans, lakes, and springs.

Planning your summer getaway? While the formula for a memorable vacation would tell you that you need to travel with at least three people, try four new experiences, and capture 45 photos, for many, there's only one real requirement for an epic summer vacay: sparkling, crystal blue waters. Whether you have fins for legs or you are an avid photographer or someone who just appreciates a place with a dreamy view, a vacation overlooking an Instagrammable body of water is probably at the top of your summer travel bucket list.

According to the premium mobility service SIXT, searches for "best water vacations" are up by 300 percent this year. People want to spend more time floating down the river, swimming in the lake, and catching sunsets seaside. A water vacation can appeal to all types of travelers, too, including the adventure seekers, "lazy" vacationers (is there anything more peaceful than a nap by the water?), and artsy folks.

To help you plan the best water vacation ever, SIXT color-picked and analyzed our nation's most breathtaking waterways to find the top 10 destinations with the bluest and clearest waters in the U.S.

"The world is full of stunning natural wonders, but there's something unique about recharging while enjoying blue waters," says SIXT's country development and travel expert David Woody in a statement. "Studies have shown that when we're near water, the sights and sounds kickstart neurochemicals in our body that stimulate wellness, increasing blood flow to the brain and heart and helping us relax."

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He continued, "Whether you're hoping to escape to a remote beach town with scenic Pacific views or be mesmerized by the gulf shores and Atlantic coastlines, there are countless spots to explore and admire the incredible magic of the water."

So, you can guess which U.S. waterway was crowned as the destination with the clearest waters? As if its name isn't a dead giveaway, SIXT named Glass Beach in Port Townsend, Washington, as the spot with the clearest water. Coeur d'Alene lake in Idaho, Lake George in New York, and Lake Conway in Edgewood, Florida, were also recognized for their crystal-clear waters.

California had two waterways that made it into the top 10, which isn't a surprise considering its neighbor is the Pacific Ocean. In fifth and sixth place was Sail Bay and La Jolla Cove, both located in San Diego. Grand Lake in Colorado was ranked fourth bluest. These water destinations can be best described as aquamarine.

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If you prefer your waterways to be sapphire blue over crystal-clear, then head to Las Olas Beach in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. SIXT says it's the third bluest waterway in the nation.

However, water can have an emerald tint to it, as well. Chena Hot Springs in Fairbanks, Arkansas, is the second bluest waterway in the U.S. thanks to its "moody" green undertones.

If you're after the bluest waterway in America, then you'll be headed to Blue Hole in Santa Rosa, New Mexico. It's part of Seven Sister Lakes. Blue Hole boasts a pretty sapphire blue hue and has a temperature of 62℉.

Whatever shade you prefer your ocean, lake, river, or hot spring, don't forget to pack your bathing suit and camera!

Emily Weaver
Emily is a NYC-based freelance entertainment and lifestyle writer — though, she’ll never pass up the opportunity to talk about women’s health and sports (she thrives during the Olympics). Read more
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