With all of our beach resorts, there’s no need to leave the state to have an incredible vacation. New Jersey has so many shore towns to choose from, so where does one go first? Asbury Park is awesomely eclectic, Cape May offers Victorian charm and Wildwood has a funky, retro vibe, but Ocean City is the ultimate New Jersey destination for family fun. What makes it so special? Read on…
With 8 miles of coastline and beautiful bay beaches, opportunities to enjoy the water are abundant.
There's an activity for everyone to enjoy! Rent a kayak through Dak's Kayaks, parasail with Ocean City Parasail, and try your hand at surfing or stand up paddle boarding with OC Paddleboard or Heritage Surf & Sport.
The surfing here is spectacular thanks to fairly flat and only slightly sloped beaches which create waves that break well. The waves are also consistent, making Ocean City a popular pick for surfers.
You can find all sorts of outdoor activities.
The City of Ocean City owns and operates a public 12-hole, par 3 golf course and maintains several designated bike paths. BYOB (bring your own bike) or rent one at Annarelli's Bicycles, 13th Street Bathhouse & Bikes, or Ocean City Bicycle Center. There are also multiple mini golf options including Congo Falls (pictured, and a top pick), Haunted Golf, and Medieval Fantasy Miniature Golf.
Amusements abound at Playland Castaway Cove and Gillian's Wonderland Pier.
Castaway Cove has been in business over 55 years and offers a sizable selection of both family-friendly and thrill rides. Gillian's offers indoor and outdoor rides, including a log flume.
For even more adventure, there's a water park to explore.
Boardwalk Adventures offers a water park, mini golf and rock climbing . Try the Serpentine Body Slide for a thrill, or the Lazy River to chill.
Of course you can always relax and appreciate nature in OC.
Bay Cats offers sailboat rides, yoga on the dock, unique kayak nature tours, and much more. Visitors can also enjoy geocaching, fishing, bird watching and the beauty of Corson's Inlet State Park.
The boardwalk is a blast!
Enjoy arcades, a variety of shops, casual dining, and your favorite boardwalk snacks.
Downtown doesn't disappoint.
The fun isn't limited to the boardwalk. Downtown Ocean City offers over 100 shops and restaurants! Head to Asbury Avenue (not pictured) for consignment shops, bookstores and boutiques. Check out Rauhauser's Candies, Bookateria Two, Blue Eden, Hoy's 5 & 10, Lucky Find, and so many more.
While the eateries in Ocean City are mostly more casual, you can score great deals and all kinds of cuisine! Jon & Patty's is a great go-to spot for breakfast and lunch, Kessel's Korner offers a full menu and is also known for fantastic frozen desserts, OC Surf Cafe offers breakfast all day, and shore staple Uncle Bill's has two Ocean City locations.
Oves Beach Grill also offers bike rentals, and Manco & Manco is the place to go for pizza. Spadafora's features amazing early bird dinner deals (under $15 for an entree, soup or salad, two side dishes AND dessert) and Brown's has a full menu and (almost famous) donuts. Hula Restaurant offers palatable plate lunches, Hawaiian-style, and Johnny B Goode delivers ice cream to the beach! As you can tell, every restaurant in Ocean City is totally unique.
Did I mention the FREE history museum?
Located in the Ocean City Community Center, you'll find interesting rotating exhibits and an extensive collection of vintage Ocean City maps.
Unique events make this city stand out!
There's almost always something to do in Ocean City, and you can bet you'll be in for a unique experience. The upcoming Doo Dah Parade on April 16th features comedy, a march of the Basset Hounds, and a pie throwing extravaganza. On May 21st + 22nd, visitors can partake in a real life treasure hunt, and the July Jubilee (starting June 27th) offers a week of wild and whacky contests leading up to July 4th. Try your hand at fry sculpting, or taffy sculpting if that's more your style.
On July 16, be sure to check out "Night In Venice," one of the largest boat parades in the world. On August 3rd, you can enjoy a crustacean beauty pageant and hermit crab races. The summer ends with a contest that you'll fall head over heels for - literally. Competitors perform their most dramatic slow motion falling scenes in hopes of scoring the coveted title of King or Queen of Plop.
From the famed Flanders Hotel to the luxurious all suite Watson's Regency, you'll find your home away from home here. If you're on a budget, Ocean 7 Motel and Ocean Front Motel are great options. If you prefer a bed and breakfast, get prepared to be charmed! The Ocean City Mansion, Serendipity Bed & Breakfast, Atlantis Inn, Brown's Nostalgia, and Inn the Gardens B&B are all favorites.
To top it all off, you can see sunrises like this!
Definitely worth waking up for.
Ocean City is a quirky New Jersey destination that can’t be missed. If you’ve lived here for any length of time and haven’t experienced the city’s unique charms, I highly recommend you check it out.