Boardwalks, beaches, mini golf and Guido’s aptly describes our Jersey Shore weekend. I was hoping for beaches and relaxation. I was guessing I would get more cheesy Vegas on a shoreline. What I got was a pleasant surprise and a new respect for Jersey.
For the most part, New Jersey really gets a bad rap for no good reason. We started our JS weekend in Atlantic City. I had to see what everyone talked about and why AC was so great. Hmm, I didn’t get it. I was not an AC fan. I found it a bit on the creepy side. We wandered the casinos, the boardwalk and the streets around the boardwalk. I don’t recommend walking around solo at night. Some of the areas were more than shady. However, we did have a terrific breakfast at Maria’s Luncheonette on 2319 Atlantic Ave.
[Maynard’s View: Having been to Vegas several times in my life I semi anticipated Atlantic City being similar, and it was in all the wrong ways. Sketchy and long past its prime are thoughts that stick out in my head. I did manage to play a successful round of “Wheel of Fortune” and ride on a Ferris wheel with Glinda for the first time, so the trip wasn’t a total wash.]
We quickly left AC for Long Beach Island. Now this was a seashore town I could easily fall in love with, and I did. LBI reminded me of what everything summer on the shore should be. Great beach houses, families flying kites, people out riding bikes, walkers everywhere and beautiful sandy beaches. We drove to the end of the island to visit the Barnegat Lighthouse & State Park. The lighthouse was designed by Lt. General George Gordon Meade and finished building in the late 1850’s. Climb the 217 steps to the top for a gorgeous view of the island and the Atlantic Ocean.
[Maynard’s View: This was an excellent pick by Glinda. I always enjoy a good lighthouse. It just conjures up memories of a different time. I especially like them when you are able to climb to the top. The top provides an excellent perch to survey all the activity below and walking the coast line afterwards is the perfect topper.]
Take the time to walk around the park and visit one of the many beaches on the island. If you are looking for some delicious seafood head to Mud City Crab House just outside of LBI at 1185 E Bay Ave, Manahawkin, NJ.. We had read about this place on Yelp and we were glad we did. It was packed. We waited about 40 minutes which we had expected from reading the reviews. Once we were seated we started playing games on the brown paper table tops and anxiously waited for our meals. Wow! Their crab cake was really one of the best ever. Crazily, their corn on the cob was perfection. I still dream of finding a similar perfect ear of corn. We left LBI with a promise to be back for a longer visit next time.
Before our road trip our knowledge of the Jersey Shore was just that, the TV Show “The Jersey Shore”. Don’t judge! We stayed in Toms River and drove into Seaside Heights & Seaside Park. The 2 locations share a boardwalk with Seaside Park at the south end of the walk. Both locations had recovered from Hurricane Sandy but were then devastated again in September 2013 by a fire which started at the Seaside Park side. The Seaside Heights side has been able to rebuild and is open for visitors, but the Seaside Park side is still recovering. Don’t let that stop you from visiting. This place deserves a visit.
[Maynard’s View: Regardless of your thoughts on the reality show, the boardwalk was full of tasty food and very polite people. It was a vibrant chunk of land with hard working people whom deserve your support. If you have never been, disregard the negative press and go take a look for yourself.]
Recommendable: YES! Jersey Shore is a big place and has lots of different towns to offer every personality. We highly recommend visiting Long Beach Island and go North.