16 Best Beaches in New Jersey

In the summer, New Jersey’s neighboring states send their residents in droves to the state’s shores to escape the sweltering heat by taking advantage of the Atlantic Ocean’s desirable proximity to the Garden State.

But there’s more to New Jersey than just the beach; the state is also famous as a seaside haven with attractions like historic Victorian homes and peaceful green spaces.

New Jersey has plenty of secluded beaches with Victorian homes if you prefer them to the more popular, touristy beaches.

Ready to leave right now?

This list of top New Jersey beaches will give you a taste of the many charming coastal communities in the Garden State.

  1. Cape May

The beautiful beaches of Cape May, which stretch for more than two miles, are among the city’s most popular attractions.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Cape May is the oldest seaside resort city in the United States and has some of the most beautiful beaches in the state.

In the background of its pristine beaches, about 600 Victorian buildings have been preserved, making a trip to the city feel like a sunny trip back in time.

Expert Tip

Cape May is a great place to visit for the beach and its vintage wineries, alpaca farm, mid-1800s lighthouse, and theaters.

  1. Avalon

Avalon, located a mile east to the north of 7 Mile Island, is known for its lively white sand beaches.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Avalon is an idyllic seaside town full of colorful boats, yachts, and one-of-a-kind residences.

Its half-mile Boardwalk, playgrounds, and parks are big draws, as is the relaxed yet upbeat atmosphere.

Expert Tip

Don’t miss the breathtaking sunrise and the arrival of the first beachgoers.

  1. Ocean Grove

Despite its rapid growth since its 1869 founding, the quaint town of Ocean Grove has managed to preserve its Victorian-era buildings and scenery, including some of the most beautiful, crystal-clear water beaches in New Jersey.

Why We Recommend This Beach

If you’re looking for a dog-friendly beach that’s still close to restaurants and shops, look no further than Ocean Grove.

The best part is the presence of lifeguards and the spick-and-span facilities available to visitors.

Expert Tip

While in Ocean Grove, be sure to check out the Great Auditorium.

A wooden Victorian theater, it has been called “the state’s most wondrous wooden structure.”

  1. Wildwood Beach — Wildwood

Wildwood Beach is one of the most well-known beaches in New Jersey, and for a good reason: it’s located in a famous resort town and has won numerous awards for its quality.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Waterparks and seaside amusement parks have made Wildwood a popular vacation destination for many.

Wildwood’s Splash Zone is a local favorite because it has many fun water attractions, such as slides and a river to float along.

Indoor activities in the city are just as enjoyable.

Expert Tip

Check out their events schedule to see what’s happening at this five-mile stretch of sand, including tournaments, festivals, races, and concerts.

  1. Sandy Hook — Highlands

Sandy Hook Beach is a paradise for fun-seeking explorers, boasting seven miles of stunning coastline and unobstructed views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Sandy Hook is the best beach in the area for families with young children because the water is shallow and shallow, and because there are plenty of attentive lifeguards stationed at various points along the shoreline. Relax knowing that your loved ones are secure.

Expert Tip

The time between September 16 and March 14 is dog-friendly at Sandy Hook Beach. However, you should always keep them on a leash.

  1. Brigantine Beach — Brigantine

With its miles of oceanfront shoreline and abundance of exciting attractions, Brigantine Beach is a top beach destination in the area, second only to Atlantic City.

Why We Recommend This Beach

The calm waters of Brigantine Beach are perfect for a variety of water sports, including surfing, kayaking, jet skiing, sailing, canoeing, and fishing with friends.

Some of the finest hotels in New Jersey are located close to Brigantine Beach.

Expert Tip

Brigantine Beach Patrol offers a swim lesson program for kids who don’t know how to swim.

  1. Ocean City

Due to its eight miles of coastline filled with amusement parks and beach activities, Ocean City attracts hundreds of thousands of summer vacationers every year.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Ocean City is a popular destination for New Jersey beachgoers because of its welcoming vibe and abundance of exciting attractions suitable for children.

This seaside metropolis, known as America’s Greatest Family Resort, is renowned for its beaches and Boardwalk, parks, and arcades.

Expert tip

The best waves can be found along Waverly Boulevard and 16th Street.

Biking on the Boardwalk, yoga on the soft sand, and shopping in the city center are all options for those who aren’t into surfing.

  1. Island Beach State Park — Seaside Park

From Seaside Park, you can go to both Island Beach State Park and Seaside Park Beach.

You’ll find 10 miles of white sand beaches and clear, blue water in the latter.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Several bird and plant species call Island Beach State Park’s more than 3,000 pristine acres of coastal dunes and white sand beaches home.

Expert Tip

Island Beach State Park has facilities for people who use wheelchairs, so it’s a good choice if you plan to bring your grandparents along on your beach vacation.

During the warm months, you can even rent beach wheelchairs to use while you’re there.

  1. Seaside Heights

This amusement park-focused coastal town has been a summer destination for hordes of families since 1915.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Seaside Heights, one of New Jersey’s most well-known beach towns, provides excellent value.

Most of the seaside attractions that are still popular with beach bums today are over a century old.

Expert Tip

Day-to-day, unlimited access to Bay Beach is free of charge.

Put aside cash for amusement park rides, arcade games, and beachside eateries.

  1. Point Pleasant Beach

Point Pleasant Beach, located on the long, narrow Barnegat Peninsula, is the best beach in Ocean County, thanks to its immaculate sandy shores, clear blue waters, and bustling oceanfront boardwalk.

Why We Recommend This Beach

White, fine sand makes Point Pleasant Beach perfect for sunbathing, strolling, building sandcastles, playing beach games, and flying kites.

But what makes Point Pleasant famous is Jenkinson’s Boardwalk, a mile-long boardwalk with a mini-golf course, amusement park rides, carnival games, and other places to eat.

Expert Tip

Check the official events calendar on Jenkinson’s Boardwalk’s website for some extra amusement!

  1. Asbury Park Beach — Asbury Park

Asbury Park Beach, located on the Atlantic coast, is a family-friendly beach destination with a wide variety of services and facilities.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Asbury Park Beach is the best place to go swimming in New Jersey because it has a vast stretch of sand, clear water, gentle waves, and a lively boardwalk lined with shops and restaurants.

Expert Tip

If you work up an appetite at the beach, don’t worry; there are food trucks nearby serving natural, healthy food.

Try one of the restaurants along the Boardwalk to get in the mood for a beach bash.

  1. Long Beach Island

Known for its 18 miles of pristine beaches and easygoing atmosphere, Long Beach Island is the ideal destination for a romantic getaway.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Outdoor enthusiasts, thrill-seekers, beach bums, and explorers will all find something to do on Long Beach Island.

Fun activities, stores, eateries, celebrations, and landmarks surround you on the water.

Expert Tip

Take breathtaking scenery at the Barnegat Light Museum, or go fishing for fresh catches off the south jetty walkway.

  1. Stone Harbor Beach — Stone Harbor

Stone Harbor calls itself “The Seashore at Its Best” because it has 30 miles of pristine beachfront.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Stone Harbor Beach is a quiet stretch of shoreline with powdery white sand and clear blue water, providing a haven away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Expert Tip

Some nearby points of interest, including museums and a zoo, are within easy driving distance of Stone Harbor Beach.

  1. Long Branch Beach — Long Branch

In New Jersey, you can find beaches that seem to go on forever.

It has been a popular vacation spot since the late 1700s, and Long Branch Beach is a prime example.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Located in a tourist hub, Long Branch Beach is conveniently located near many of the city’s best sights.

With summer’s rising summer temperatures comes a swarm of people and a rainbow of umbrellas dotting the beach.

Expert Tip

Pier Village, an oceanfront entertainment complex with restaurants, shops, and a giant carousel, is just a short walk from Long Branch Beach.

You should probably look into that before leaving town.

  1. Spring Lake Beach — Spring Lake

Spring Lake is an idyllic seaside community known as “Ireland’s Riviera” for its picturesque parks, Victorian-era homes, and breathtaking ocean views.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Spring Lake is the Cape May of the soul, perfect for those intensely appreciating history and the sea because of its underappreciated beauty and old-fashioned charm.

Expert Tip

Visit the Historic Inns and stay in a restored Victorian home.

It’s a fun and informative way to get a taste of what it was like to live like a Victorian.

  1. Margate

Margate is only two miles long and one mile wide, but it’s one of the best New Jersey beaches for quiet, calm, shallow waters.

Why We Recommend This Beach

Margate makes up for its lack of tourists with its beautiful scenery, convenient locations, exciting attractions, and peaceful atmosphere.

Tourists who work up an appetite on the beach can choose from a wide variety of nearby dining and drinking options.

Expert Tip

Don’t leave without seeing Lucy the Elephant, a landmark in Margate since its construction in 1881.

It has a gift shop inside and a roof deck for relaxing.

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