12 Top-Rated Beaches in New Jersey (2023)
Amongst everything New Jersey is known and celebrated for, its famous and revered feature definitely has to be the ‘Beaches’. Even though it is one of the smallest U.S states (by area), it still is blessed with 130 miles of Atlantic coast and about 44 well known and frequently visited public beaches. From family friendly to couples-only, dog friendly and even the nude beaches, New Jersey has it all, and no matter what taste you carry, you won’t go back disappointed.
New Jersey as a state is known to house some of the best beaches in the North-eastern United States, and anyone who has been here will unarguably agree to the fact. Either you want to relax beside the ocean or want to indulge in some water sports, New Jersey beaches will aptly fit all your needs. One of the best qualities about beaches here is that no matter which side of the State you are travelling to, coasts here are always clean, accessible and full of basic amenities. Further to learn more such details about the beaches in New Jersey, you would have to read below:
12 Top-Rated Beaches in New Jersey
Have a look at our list of 12 Top-Rated Beaches in New Jersey:
1. Ocean City Beach
Ocean City Beach is one of the cleanest beaches in New Jersey, and to maintain the name, it is swept every single day. It features an extensive 8 miles beachfront and is ranked as one of the top family-friendly beaches in the world. Though technically, it is divided into numerous small beaches, namely Seventh Street, 16th Street, Waverly Boulevard and a few others. The entire waterfront here is alcohol-free, and lifeguard’s petrol on the beach regularly from Morning to Evening hours. What takes the limelight at the Ocean City beach is the dramatic, postcard-perfect boardwalk that offers splendid scenery on both explicit and clouded days.Image Source
2. Wildwood Beach
New Jersey’s resort city, Wildwood, has a pristine 5-mile beach stretch that is famous for its natural yet suburban settings. There is a 500 yards soft and sandy gap between the boardwalk and the oceanfront where you will either find visitors relaxing, vendors selling some or the other delicious treat, or some events going around. Beach lovers can plant their sun loungers and spend their day soaking into the vibe of Wildwood, or they can head towards the 36-block boardwalk and enjoy the amusement rides, games or shop for gifts and souvenirs. Wildwood Beaches are also famous for surfing, swimming, boogie boarding, jet skiing, and kayaking.
3. Gunnison Beach
Gunnison Beach is the only nude beach in New Jersey and also one of the best nude beaches on the east coast of the United States. It can be reached in the Middletown Township, and once you cross the entry point, you will either encounter nude sunbathers or the ones in their swimsuits (clothing here is optional). However, neither the vibe nor the visitors here are abrupt, and no matter if you are into nude bathing or not, you will enjoy your time to the fullest here. Only mark that nor children under 13 are allowed here neither lewdness is entertained, and if found guilty, you might be charged under the law. To make sure that you stay comfortable, ditch your flip flop and wear an excellent sole sandal, and soak well into insect repellent.
4. Asbury Park Beach
Earlier in the time, the Asbury Park Beach was stranded somewhere in the last of most lists; however, the last decade has changed the scene, and today it is one famous beach to visit in Pennsylvania. A revamped boardwalk, refurbish sandy stretch, and the compilation of some fab shops and restaurants have raised the game here, and today, anyone will love their time at Asbury. Moreover, you can swim, surf, fish, dive, dine, shop, golf and do several recreational and fun activities here. From 1st October to 5th May, the beach becomes dog-friendly, and you can take along your four-legged fur for a nice walk-in peace. French food and cocktails at the boardwalk are worth all praises; thus, make sure you give them a try.
5. Point Pleasant Beach
Point Pleasant is a borough in itself featuring a group of beaches, both public and private. Where some of them are free, entering a few others would require you to pay a small fee. Visitors here often enjoy kayaking, sunbathing, jet skiing, swimming and beachcombing; however, what adds to the special interests are the surfing opportunities. Surfers mainly choose to stay near a region named “The Pocket”; however, the entire area is absolutely safe and guarded by trained experts all the time. After you are done with the beach tradition, next head towards Bradshaw Beach and explore the boardwalk but make sure you gain its access formally as the boardwalk is privately owned.
6. Island Beach State Park
Island Beach State Park is a seaside park known to house some of the most beautiful beaches in New Jersey. It is located in the southern terminus of Route 35 and is blessed by the views and tranquillity of nature. Its unique setting is between the peaceful Barnegat Bay and the dramatic Atlantic Ocean; thus, you always have a lot to do and explore here. Visitors here can swim, sunbathe, surf, fish or relax under their beach umbrellas. It is also home to the largest osprey colony in New Jersey and thus one fine place for bird watchers and wildlife explorers. If the timings suit, you can view peregrine falcons, songbirds, wading birds, shorebirds, and waterfowl.
7. Long Beach Island
Long Beach Island is a popular coastal attraction in New Jersey known for its white sandy beaches, family-friendly environment. Due to its proximity to Philadelphia and New York, it welcomes a considerable crowd of beach lovers all throughout the year. Not only travellers but seasonal residents, migrants, and wanderers choose it as their ultimate stop in New Jersey. Of all the beaches here, Ship Bottom, Harvey Cedars, Surf City, and Beach Heaven are noted as the best, along with that Fantasy Island Amusement Park and Barnegat Lighthouse State Park are marked as the prominent attractions nearby.
8. Avon by the Sea
Avon by the Sea is located near Asbury Park and is a popular destination amongst New Jersey locals. Even though it is a year-round beach but summers here an extremely lively with celebrative and happy vibes. To visit Avon during summers, one has to buy a beach badge which is available at several locations around the beach. There are several restrooms, ample parking space, and enough trained guards to ensure smooth and safe operations at the beach. For dining and drinking needs, you can visit the boardwalk and choose from several upscale restaurants and street vendors.
9. Cape May Beach
If you are a New Jersey local or belong to New York or Pennsylvania, you would definitely have visited any Cape May Beaches or heard about them. Beaches here are pretty fashionable and arguably the most charming as well. Cape May is also noted as America’s first seaside holiday destination, and thus every element here brings nostalgia. You can head towards Congress Street Beach for an upscale ambience, which is right in front of the famous Congress Hall. Steger Beach and 2nd Avenue Beach are friendly options if you are interested in some beachside sports. Further for fishing, visit Brooklyn Avenue Beach and for a late afternoon walk, choose Sunset Beach. Lastly, for water activities like surfing and kayaking, there’s isn’t a better option than the Cove beach.
10. Brigantine Beach
Brigantine Beach is a clean, less-crowded and scheduled beach location in New Jersey. It is known for the pink sand, which looks no less than a pretty painting on a clear day. Unlike several other Atlantic beaches, Brigantine has weathered more on the cooler side, which, when complemented with those light sun rays, takes one’s experience to a whole new level of pleasure and satisfaction. Lifeguards here are on their duty from 15th June to the first week of September, and else for the rest of the time, visitors have to keep themselves safe. When lifeguards are off-duty, Brigantine Beach isn’t the best place for ocean activities though if you are here for view and vibe, you definitely are on the right path.
11. Belmar Beach
Belmar Beach is a small beach located in the central region of New Jersey and is noted as the most accessible beach in the State. If you are here in New Jersey with your family (especially kids and senior adults), this can be your ultimate relaxation spot. Even if you have any physically abled individual or babies along, that pathway here provides smooth access for wheelchairs and strollers. The water here is really calm and safe, though swimming far away is not advice. You can access the water fountain and bathrooms or rent beach umbrellas and chairs if required.
12. Keansburg beach
Keansburg Beach is an isolated beach and a hidden gem in New Jersey. There aren’t any lifeguards on duty, but the water is so calm that barely any casualty is ever reported here. On any regular day, visitors first enjoy their time in the nearby amusement park and then further heads towards the Keansburg beach to seek a few hours of relaxation and peace. Even though there isn’t much to do at the beach, but you can still sit, relax and watch the ocean.