Sandy Hook

Sandy Hook
Sandy Hook beaches overlook the Manhattan skyline. These beautiful beaches are a part of the Gateway National Recreation Area, a sprawling park with units in Queens, Brooklyn, and Staten Island in New York City. Across the bay, the park encompasses the Sandy Hook Peninsula in New Jersey.

Many visitors arrive at the park by sea. It takes less than an hour to make the trip by luxury catamaran from Manhattan to Sandy Hook. The park, too, is accessible by highway. A small entry fee is collected to park, and once you arrive, you can visit any of the Sandy Hook beaches or the historic sites without paying anything extra.

At Sandy Hook, the golden-sand beaches line the Atlantic Ocean and Jamaica Bay—wide-open stretches of sand where you can enjoy some fun in the park. Visitor amenities are plentiful and include snack shops and bathhouses with showers and changing areas. Lifeguards patrol the beach during the summertime. During this season, surf fishing is allowed in the early morning and late evening. Nighttime fishing an option, too, as long as you get a pass from the visitor center or the ranger station.

One of the secluded Sandy Hook beaches, Gunnison Beach, allows nude sunbathing and swimming. It’s set away from the main park areas, about a fifteen-minute walk from the parking lot.

Sandy Hook also offers a lot of fun away beyond swimming and walks on the beach. Boaters especially love horseshoe Cove, while kite boarders and windsurfers catch a wave in the waters across from the beach simply named Beach C.

Away from the beach, the park offers a long list of fun things to do. Trails wind through the park, with plenty of room for joggers and roller bladers. Bird watching is another popular activity, as are history tours. Sandy Hook is home to the oldest lighthouse on the New Jersey Shore. On summer afternoons, park rangers or volunteers lead tours to the top of the historic light. Sandy Hook once was a military base, and some of the remaining buildings are open for tours.

Top image: edenpictures (flickr)
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Gunnison Beach

Gunnison Beach

Gunnison Beach on New Jersey’s Sandy Hook Peninsula is one of the few New Jersey beaches where nude sunbathing is allowed. It’s also one of the best places in the Garden State to get away from the fast pace of Manhattan and still enjoy the views of the city skyline. The six-mile-long peninsula where the [...]

Sandy Hook Beach

Sand Hook Beach

  Sandy Hook beach is one of the closest New Jersey beaches to Manhattan. Less than an hour by highway or luxury catamaran from NYC’s skyscrapers and museums, this shoreline destination is especially popular in the summer. If you’re looking for a relaxed getaway and amazing scenery, the Sandy Hook area in New Jersey is [...]