Nope, not the show.. In fact, nothing like the show!!! Everyone in Jersey has their favorite beach. When people are visiting NJ and ask me which beach is the closest to where they are staying or ask my opinion about that beach, I always like to send them this picture. With this, I can get a feel of which one they are closest too and give my advice. I know this without looking at it, but for some reason, it all comes together looking at it this way. FYI, I live right where the bears ears are at the top, a little more towards the New York State border.
Most of the beaches are nice to visit. Pretend to be driving down the parkway, here are just a handful of my favorites…
1) Sandy Hook
I love to go to Sandy Hook for the day, as it’s one of the Northernmost beaches. I can get there within an hour and a half. Sandy Hook is about a 6 mile long stretch. There’s a few different beaches within the “hook” itself. It’s also very historical and known for its lighthouse and Fort Hancock. You can see NYC from a distance as well. If you’re not up to traveling too far south and just want to get straight to the point of laying out on the beach without a boardwalk, then Sandy Hook is for you! Also, there’s only one fee ($15) which includes both parking and beach.
2) Long Branch/Asbury Park
Long branch is a great beach. It has a boardwalk with lots of restaurants and shopping. There are no rides so if your looking for more of an adult atmosphere, it’s a good one! Asbury Park, well, Bruce Springsteen of course!!! The Stone Pony! There is a lot of history to Asbury. They are making lots of improvements as well. I must say, they’ve cleaned it up pretty well!
3) Point Pleasant
Now we are heading to the more family friendly beaches with piers! Rides, games, aquariums.. Point Pleasant is certainly a more family friendly atmosphere because of all the things kids can do. I personally like to take my nieces and their friends here every year. It’s not too far down the parkway, it’s just the right distance! Also, let’s not forget the adults.. Great tiki bars too!!
4) Lavallette/Seaside Heights
Heading south more, there are quite a few towns which you’ll drive through that are sure to please (no pun intended). To me, Lavallette though has a lot meaning to it. It’s where my dad spent his summers as a child. It’s a quite Shore town with very clean beaches and nice little shops throughout. There’s a few old pictures I’d like to share of Lavallette, the summer of the Martino’s.
Seaside Heights is just like a Point Pleasant, family friendly. Boardwalk, rides, arcades, and that’s right! Bars for adults! The one thing it has that the other beaches don’t (until recently, they opened a 2nd one in Asbury) is Marucas Pie. We all have our favorite pizza, cheesesteaks, ice cream shops, fudge… Well, like father like daughter, I’m gonna have to go with Marucas pizza as my recommendation. It is DELICIOUS!! A slice (or 2) and then a Kohrs soft serve vanilla and chocolate swirl afterwards, my boardwalk visit is then complete..
5) Atlantic City
A.C. has become much more than just gambling. They’ve got more shops and restaurants out on the streets than ever. On the boardwalk, they’ve built some tiki bars and have cleaned it up tremendously! They have laser shows on the boardwalk every night in the summer. There are rides and games.
There’s always some type of festival going on and of course, there are the casinos too. Some of my favorites bites to eat are in AC! The Irish Pub and Harry’s Oyster Bar. There was a food network festival going on once and I was standing in White House Subs waiting for a sandwich and in walked Guy Fieri and his wife!!! I instantly got a picture!
A few blocks away from AC in Margate stands Lucy the Elephant. Lucy was built in 1881 to attract tourists and is the oldest living roadside attraction in America!
Atlantic City can be a fun place to visit for sure without having to gamble. Give it a whirl. Free beaches too!