Amid the hustle and bustle of daily life, you might forget that New York City is surrounded by water, and even better, miles of gorgeous beaches from Long Island to the Jersey Shore. But don’t stress over choosing between the price tag of the Hamptons versus the Snookie-ness of Jersey, there are plenty of kid-friendly beaches accessible by public transportation and most no more than one hour away. The NYC Parks Department maintains 14 miles of beaches, all of which are open from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day with lifeguards are on duty daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. So what are you waiting for? Pack up the sand toys and sunscreen, grab the kids and hit the beach already!

6. A Trendy Beach Town and Boardwalk

Take a drive to Long Branch, Nj to explore this clean family-friendly beach town with trendy shopping and inviting restaurants along the 2 mile boardwalk on Ocean Avenue between Seaview Avenue to the north and Brighton Avenue to the south. A $7 adult pass and $3 youth pass (ages 14-17 years) will give you day access to sun, surf and white sand beaches. You’ll find public bathrooms scattered along the beach. Pier Village is the center of the action offering private parking and a variety of restaurants.

For More Fun: Visit the oceanfront Seven Presidents Oceanfront Park (named for seven presidents who were frequent visitors in the late 1800s and early 1900s), a 33-acre county park with facilities for swimming, boating and picnicking, as well as bathrooms and showers.

Travel Time: 1 hour 30 minutes on NJ Transit from Penn Station or 1 hour 15 minute drive.

Getting There: NJ Transit sells a combined round trip rail and beach pass for $31.50. Take the Jersey Shore Express train via NJ Transit from Penn Station.

Photo courtesy of Pinky And The B. via


Share your favorite local beach spot in the Comments below.

-Ashly Grzyb