Every summer, I go to the beach. That’s a given. But this year, I made it my mission to visit 50 beaches (my most ambitious goal ever) during 2016. Right now, all I have to show for my numerous beach visits are a few dozen photos and a list on my computer. However, the experience means a lot more to me than that.

Visiting an outrageous 50 beaches this year was due to a combination of factors: 1) my six-month internship in Cape Cod, where I could literally walk to the beach every single day, 2)  spending the second half of the summer at my home by Lake Michigan, driving distance from dozens of (somewhat?) famed Midwest beaches, and 3) an opportunity to visit my boyfriend’s family’s condo in the Bahamas over Spring Break. In addition to my three “beach pillars,” I also spent 4) a weekend in California with my mom when she was traveling for work, and was able to add a few West Coast beaches to the list.

Experiencing these four prime beach locations in one eight-month span, aside from being an incredible privilege, also allows for a grand experiment. Throughout the next few weeks, I’m going to address how I experienced the beach in each of these regions, as well as the future of the beach in these areas. Trust me when I say it’s not just a way to relive my summer memories as Boston grows colder. Or at least that’s not the only reason.