Beaches & Dunes

Beaches occupy only about two percent, or 75 miles, of Maine’s 5,300 miles of coastline. Hazards of living on a beach or in a sand dune system include hurricanes and nor’easters, erosion, storm surge, and flooding. Learn more about Maine’s beaches and dunes and determine if your beach property is eroding.

NOTE: Maine classifies all areas below the highest annual tide elevation, including rocky shores, sand beaches, mud flats, and salt marshes, as "Coastal Wetlands." In order to facilitate problem solving on this website, Coastal Wetland types have been grouped into three categories: Beaches & Dunes; Bluffs & Rocky Shores; and Coastal Wetlands.

Checklist to ID coastal hazards on your property                                                                            A checklist has been developed to help you identify and rank beach and dune hazards, using the maps and other resources in this guide and by conducting a field inventory of your property.

 Download Beach, Dune, and Coastal Flooding checklist

Beach hazard actions at a glance

My beach is eroding. What can I do?

Speak early and often to town officials and state agency staff.

Weigh the risks, with help from a certified geologist, licensed engineer, or other professional.

Finally, consider your options for taking action: