Grab your sandals, towels, and sun lotion for the final months of summer. With beach season nearing its end, it is time to solidify your final vacation plans. But once you’ve packed your bags, the thought hits: Where can we eat? And especially, where can we eat vegan?
To help close out summer vacation, PETA just crowned the top 10 vegan-friendly beach towns for vegans and plant-based diners. PETA’s guide to American beach cities gives us a look at some hidden gems (with several surprises). Some of the best plant-based eats in the country can be found by the shore.
“Whether it’s the Ahi Watermelon Nigiri at PLANTA in West Palm Beach or the tasty treats at San Diego’s vegan festivals, it’s as easy as tofu cream pie for beach-going foodies to eat kindly,” PETA President Ingrid Newkirk said. “All the beach towns on PETA’s list are hot spots for the animal-friendly fare people are craving this summer.”
Avoid the stress or family arguments when planning your next vacation by choosing one of these 10 cities. PETA attests that vegan and non-vegan vacationers will drool over the food scenes at these beach cities.
The Top 10 Most Vegan-Friendly Beach Towns in the U.S.
1. San Diego, California
San Diego is packed to the brim with mouthwatering vegan eateries. Between the Loving Hut‘s “Bacon” Bahn Mi and the Magical Mango Curry Wrap from Peace Pies, there’s a perfect lunch spot for every person. Looking for something for dinner? Try the Lasagna Verde from Donna Jean after a long, exhausting day of surfing.
2. West Palm Beach, Florida
By the beach, everyone is looking for seafood. But for vegan vacationers, there are more options than ever for plant-based seafood. West Palm Beach ranks as one of the best cities in the country to find vegan seafood. Try the Eggplant Scallops from Darbster or the Avocado Lime Tartare from PLANTA. Other vegan options include Dina’s Vegan Deli & Desserts’ Super Taco Nachos or Oyster Mushroom Ceviche from La Chia Vegana.
3. Charleston, South Carolina
Taking a trip to Folly Beach? Charleston is just a small drive away, and this charming southern city is home to a bustling vegan food scene. Visit Gnome Cafe for the Bulgogi Korean Bowl or sit down for a steak dinner with Vined’s Mushroom Steak. For late-night beverages and vegan bites, Neon Tiger’s menu features several plant-based pizzas with cashew milk mozzarella and classics including Buffalo chicken sandwiches and Reubens.
4. Santa Cruz, California
Nestled in Monterey Bay, Santa Cruz offers an impressive list of plant-based restaurants including Veg on the Edge and Cafe Gratitude. Head to Veg on the Edge for all-day breakfast, wraps, and tacos. Santa Cruz’s non-vegan restaurants also offer several plant-based options for its vegan vacationers. Monster Pot’s Spicy Kimchi Noodle Soup or a vegan pie from Sweet Bean Bakery make your vacation all the more memorable.
5. Newport, Rhode Island
Root in Newport, Rhode Island serves a Coconut Bacon BLT designed to help you start your day on the right foot. Visit Plant City X for a classic veggie burger or try the Chik Sandwiches. Check out Sprout and Lentil’s extensive vegan menu, featuring Cauliflower Nugget Wraps, Beyond Brats, and plant-based desserts.
6. Atlantic City, New Jersey
Going to Atlantics City is always more than just a beach vacation. Visiting the boardwalks and hours of gambling get exhausting, and this beach city offers tons of plant-based food to keep you energized. Try the Crab Cake Sandwich from Vegans Are Us or the plant-based Poke Bowl from Poke Bowl Tropical Cafe. Don’t worry, there is also plenty of stops to satisfy your craving for New Jersey Italian. Stop by Vegan 15 for plant-based Chicken Parmesan or Tony Boloney’s vegan pizza.
7. Nags Head, North Carolina
Directly south of Virginia Beach, Nags Head is North Carolina’s hidden secret. This beach town is full of delicious plant-based meals. Grad a Burrito Vegano from Plaza Azteca Restaruantes Mexicanos or some vegan curry from Masala Bay Grill. Looking for something lighter and maybe a beer? Try Outer Banks Brewing Station for some vegan tacos. For dessert, don’t miss the plant-based Cake Donuts from the Roots & Leaves food truck.
8. Long Beach, New York
Despite only having one fully vegan restaurant, a ton of Long Beach’s restaurants provide customers with at least one plant-based option. First, stop by Fermento (maybe a couple of times) for some delectable vegan eats. You can find other vegan options such as the Corn Tortilla Soup from True Food Kitchen and a vegan quesadilla at Blacksmith’s Breads. Leona & Three Brothers offers a fully vegan menu with plant-based takes on seafood classics including “Fish” N Chips and Oyster Mushroom Calamari.
9. Grand Haven, Michigan
Grand Haven is not the first beach city that comes to mind. Situated next to Lake Michigan, Grand Haven is home to several vegan eateries including Bodhi Tree Juice Co. and Rustic Roots. Look out for the Medusa Sandwich at The Toasted Pickle or the Vegan Sloppy Joe Burrito from Righteous Cuisine. Several other restaurants including Mama’s Thai Cafe and Cumin Fresh Indian Kitchen will cater to plant-based customers.
10. Galveston, Texas
Galveston may be one of the most shocking vacation destinations for vegan diners. But this tiny beach town outside of Houston provides enough vegan food for your entire vacation. Try the Surf N’ Turf Burrito from Vegan Gxng or the Vegan Island Dawg from Old Moon Deli & Pies. Check out Eatcetera for several vegan options including a vegan Lemon Bundt Cake or plant-based soba noodles.
Vegan Tourism is on the Rise
Now, over 9.7 million Americans identify as vegan and even more hope to reduce their meat and dairy consumption. A report surveyed 5,700 people globally, finding that 76 percent of respondents say that ethical and sustainable sourcing of food influences their choices.
When planning your next vacation, make sure you fly with the right airline to make sure you don’t travel hungry. Here are the best seven airlines for plant-based passengers.
Looking for a vacation away from the beach? Check out The Beet’s Find Vegan Near Me articles for the best places to eat vegan or plant-based.
The 6 Best Fast Food Chains With Plant-Based Options on the Menu
Fast-food restaurants have finally got the memo that their customer base isn’t just coming through for a burger, fried chicken, or a beef taco. Many now have plant-based foods and are coming up with creative, delicious ways to get more greens on the menu. Here are the 6 best fast-food chains with plant-based options on the menu.