Ocean City, New Jersey ... Best Family Beach in America!

Ocean City, New Jersey is a world famous beach resort, ranked as one of the "Best Family Beaches in America" by the Travel Channel. It is an amazing assortment of beautiful seashore, unending family entertainment, shopping and superb dining.

There are eight miles of pristine, well-kept beaches and bayfront for the whole family to enjoy. Ocean City is in the center of the New Jersey beaches, with the Atlantic to the east and Great Egg Harbor Bay to the west.

During the main beach season, lifeguards are on duty on most of the beachfront. You'll need a beach badge to access the beach. Fees are very reasonable - for the day is $5, and for the week is $10 (kids under 12 years old are free.) There is metered parking on the beach as well as private parking available if your accommodations are a bit too far to walk.

Sunrise on the beach at Ocean City, New Jersey Shopping offers everything from resort wear to antiques. Family-owned specialty shops and boutiques are plentiful in the downtown shopping district, on Asbury Avenue in the center of town. Plus, Wednesday evenings on Asbury Avenue features music, art and dancing during summer months.

Whatever food tempts your taste buds, you won't have to look far to find it! There are over a hundred restaurants and eateries from the Boardwalk to the Bay. From fresh seafood to world cuisine, dining out is an absolute treat.

Ocean City, NJ Beach Rentals

Needless to say, vacation rental homes are the perfect way to bring one or more families together for a week or more at the Jersey Shore.

There are hundreds of rental properties all along the island, bay side, beachfront, and a block or two off the beach. With well-stocked  homes equipped with private parking, outside showers, and all the comforts of home, it's hard to beat the advantages of staying in vacation rentals.

Ocean City Motels & Hotels

For shorter stays, or if you simply want the ease of a hotel experience and dining out, there is lodging for absolutely every budget and taste. There are motels and hotels on every turn. Boardwalk hotels are highly popular, such as the Flanders Hotel and the Beach Club Hotel - just steps away from the beach and boardwalk. A Bed & Breakfast is a great alternative for a more personal atmosphere. You can expect a comfortable, relaxing stay in charming accommodations. There are quite a few B&Bs on the beach and near the Boardwalk, and most are within walking distance from popular beach attractions.

Map of Ocean City, New Jersey

Things To Do

Entertainment is Ocean City's hallmark. From theme parks to the boardwalk, the entire family is set for a vacation of fun. There are golf and tennis facilities, fishing, boating and sightseeing cruises.

Visit the Ocean City Boardwalk! Of all the attractions, the boardwalk tops the list. Stretching 2 and a half miles, when your feet hit "the Boards" you know you're finally on vacation! Alive with entertainment, the Boardwalk is wide and clean, with amusements, shops, food and access to the beach.

Since you can't miss the towering Ferris wheel, you'll naturally be drawn to the world famous Gillian's Wonderland Pier. With roller coasters, bumper cars, go-carts and more, you can't go wrong.

You'll also enjoy the beach's oldest amusement park, Playland's Castaway Cove - extreme fun for everyone, with over 30 rides and an indoor arcade. Gillian's Island Water Park on the Boardwalk is a super fun way to splash your way through the summer heat, with water slides, fantasy shipwrecks and forts, and The Lazy River ride.

Feast on cotton candy, pizza and ice cream, or dine at ocean front cafes. Play miniature golf, go biking... and on rainy days you can take in a show at one of the two movie theaters on the boardwalk. Different nights bring lively entertainment to the Boardwalk.

On Monday evening, the summer concert series brings popular names to the stage at the Ocean City Music Pier. Tuesdays nights feature Radio Disney on the Boardwalk. In July and August, "Family Night" happens each Thursday with free celebrations of dancing, oldies bands, face painting and magic acts. The Boardwalk is a shopper's paradise, with stores and boutiques full of clothing, beach essentials, jewelry, specialty foods and much more.

More Ocean City Attractions

Here are some area happenings and places you may not be aware of, but are way too good to miss:

Boat Charters are one of Ocean City's most popular activities. Take part in some of the best saltwater fishing on the Jersey Coast, both off shore and back bay fishing. You can charter a boat trip for dolphin and whale watching, or enjoy sunset cruises with your family.

Corson's Inlet State Park is one of the last undeveloped stretches of New Jersey beaches. Visit the natural, undisturbed habitats rich in wildlife. There's a boat ramp that's open 24/7, perfect for crafts ranging from sailboats and large motor boats to jet skis and sailboards.

The Ghost Tour of Ocean City, New Jersey is spine-tingling fun for the whole family. The tours begin outside of City Hall, and you stroll through the beautiful historic part of town. Listen to creepy tales of pirates, hear the spooky secrets of the Ocean City boardwalk and ghost tales about the old hotels (are you staying in one?)

If you're an art enthusiasts, check out the Ocean City Arts Center. They feature a gallery that highlights the extraordinary talent in the area, with different exhibits each month. They also offer classes year round in painting, drawing, pottery, even music lessons and dance.

Good to know: This is a dry town, with no public alcohol consumption on the island. Vacationers and locals agree that this sets this family beach apart from neighboring beach destinations. This plus the city's desire for excellence is why Ocean City is known as "America's Greatest Family Resort."