In theory, people go to the Jersey Shore to go to the beach. However, there’s much more to do in South Jersey besides laying in the sand or jumping the waves. Below, you’ll find nine of the best things (in my personal opinion) to do at the Jersey Shore besides spending a day at the beach. Let’s get started!
1. Ride Bikes on the Wildwood Boardwalk
One of my favorite ways to start a day at the beach is to ride bikes on the boardwalk. In Wildwood, you’ll find a bike rental stand just about every other block and no matter which one you rent from, you can count on it being relatively affordable. Not to mention, this is a great way to get some exercise in while you’re on vacation.
2. Grab a Hot Dog in Cape May
Cape May is full of cute, little eateries including one slightly unconventional hot dog shack that you won’t want to miss. While they offer no seating and the lines are often long, it’s worth the wait to indulge in one (or two or three) piled-high hot dogs from Hot Dog Tommy’s. Make your own hot dog creation with dozens of unique toppings or opt for one of their Signature Favorites like a Chili Cheese Dog or, my personal favorite, the MacCrunch Dog with fried onions and mac n cheese.
3. Watch the Sunset at Sunset Beach
Yes, the Jersey Shore is on the east coast and the sun sets in the west. However, there’s a very special beach on the tip of the state that lets you live out your west coast dreams. Stop by Sunset Beach near Cape May Point to take in the sunset, check out their awesome gift shop, play a round of mini golf, and explore the lighthouse.
4. Have Dinner at Menz Restaurant in Rio Grande
For more than 50 years, my family has been eating at Menz Restaurant & Bar. There’s nowhere like this eccentrically decorated and culinarily dedicated restaurant in the country let alone the Jersey Shore. Make the short drive from your seaside hotel for freshly caught and fried fish, seasonal sangria, and the best damn mac n cheese you’ll ever have.
5. Go Shopping in Stone Harbor
There’s nothing quite like shopping at the beach. In South Jersey, Stone Harbor is the place to be when you’re looking for a souvenir or somewhere to walk around after laying on the beach all day. In downtown Stone Harbor, you’ll find all kinds of shops from T-shirt stores to beachy decor shops to chic boutiques. Check out a list of shops here.
6. Have a Drink or Two in Sea Isle
Sea Isle is a hotbed for nightlife as one of the most popular vacation spots for college students and young professionals living in the Philadelphia metropolitan area. Dance the night away in the ocean air drinking fruity drinks at a Sea Isle hotspots such as the Dead Dog Saloon, Ocean Drive, and La Costa.
7. Enjoy an Ice Cream Cone from Kohr Bros.
Nothing beats the beach heat quick like a cone of ice cream. However, Kohr Brothers will do you one better with their original frozen custard recipe that they’ve been scooping out for more than 100 years now. Enjoy a plain vanilla cone, a chocolate swirl, or a hand-dipped butterscotch ripple.
8. Get a Slice of Pizza at Mack’s
There’s about one billion pizza places at the Jersey Shore but none quite live up to Mack’s Pizza. On the Wildwood Boardwalk, you can stop by Mack’s by for a whole pie or for just a slice which may be all that you need since they’re about as big as your head. For more than 20 years, this has been my go-to pizza joint down the shore.