New Jersey has so many things to offer. They have got everything for everyone. From the high-rise buildings to the untouched nature, the Garden State is a paradise for urban life lovers and nature lovers alike. But of course, if you’re visiting New Jersey, what better way to spend your vacation than to stay by the beach and take all the sun in?
With so many places to visit and activities to do, your vacation itinerary must be bursting at the seams. Let’s narrow down your choices by looking at New Jersey’s Seaside Heights. You’ve probably already heard of Seaside Heights because of its gorgeous boardwalk or maybe because of the world-famous crazy TV show called The Jersey Shore. Here are the 19 best things to do in Seaside Heights.
Have a taste of the classic Ob-Co’s Donuts
Make sure you’re wearing your walking sandals or shoes because you’ll face an inland trek at the bay bridge before you get to this local gem that’s been serving fresh donuts to the Seaside Heights for over 70 years. Aside from looking at the now-famous signage, one way to tell if you’re at the right place is the long line of people consisting of locals and tourists down the street, all waiting for their fill of good old donuts made with love.
Ob-Co’s Donuts has been serving their signature cinnamon-sugar-raised donuts in the Seaside Heights area since 1953. Schedule your visit accordingly because when the day is over, the seemingly endless batch of donuts is gone, too.
Location: 547 Fischer Boulevard, Toms River, NJ
Can’t get enough of dessert? Have a go at The Music Man Singing Ice Cream Shoppe
Have you ever seen an ice cream store that’s 1950s-themed song-and-dance? The unique dining experience and equally unique gourmet dessert options aside from the menagerie of ice cream flavors you can choose from at The Music Man Singing Ice Cream Shoppe are made even better with Broadway tunes sung and performed by local performers who entertain throughout the night.
Location: 2305 Grand Central Avenue, Lavallette, NJ
Satisfy your sweet tooth even more at Van Holten’s Chocolates and Sweet Shop
If you love historic places and have a sweet tooth simultaneously, Van Holten’s Chocolates and Sweet Shop will satisfy your cravings. This sweet shop started in 1904. Over a century later, they have retained their classic facade and interior, taking locals and tourists on a short time traveling stint while giving them a hard time choosing between chocolates, candies, dipped fruits, and baked goods. Van Holten’s specialty is novelty sodas, Molasses Paddle Pops, and Pecan Balls.
Location: 819 Boardwalk
Spice up your nightlife or sit back and relax at Hemingway’s Cafe
Tired from strolling around the boardwalk? Take a break at Hemingway’s Cafe and enjoy all they offer. Their surprisingly diverse menu can take you on a gastronomic adventure, but their BBQ ribs and shrimp tempura sushi rolls always steal the spotlight. Hemingway Cafe’s menu catches the eyes of the locals and tourists, but the immense interior, capable of hosting any kind of event, really hooks the people in.
Location: 612 Boulevard
Get the drinks going at The Sawmill
You won’t miss The Sawmill with the tons of people coming and going from this place. It is a high-end bar serving several foods and drinks that will satiate you. You can order normal-sized food or pitch in with your friends and family to try their oversized pizza, which is great for Instagram. The Sawmill is known best for its pulled pork sandwich that you shouldn’t miss out on.
Location: 1807 Boardwalk
Have a taste of the local Seaside brew at Heavy Reel Brewing Co
Heavy Reel Brewing Company is a relatively new hang-out spot at Seaside Heights. Having arrived only in 2018, this trendy spot reeled people in with their local brews and laid-back scene. You can opt to drink the brews with a familiar taste or go fancy with Heavy Reel Brewing Company’s Reel Claw, peanut butter chocolate imperial stout, and Japanese rice lager.
Location: 1520 Boulevard
Check out Seaside Heights’ most authentic Asian cuisine at Xina
Seaside Heights’ bay area is a melting pot of all things fun, challenging, and yummy. That includes Xina, an incredibly popular Chinese restaurant just across the bay. Xina Restaurant quickly established itself in the Seaside area by having a BYOB sushi and oyster bar, a diverse selection of Asian dishes, and their crowning glories: the coconut shrimp roll and pad thai.
Location: 3430 NJ-37, Toms River, NJ
Nothing can get as classic as Hooks Bar & Grill
What better way to enjoy your seaside experience than to whip out the grill and enjoy the smokey goodness while taking in the relaxing seaside atmosphere? However, bringing a grill is just too much work. Good thing Seaside Heights has the classic Hooks Bar & Grill, where you can enjoy ample outdoor and indoor seating, complemented by classic bar food, specialty cocktails, and different kinds of outdoor bar games, including cornhole, ping pong, and skee ball.
Location: 1320 Boulevard
Travel back to the 1950s at Jimbo’s Bar & Grill
Is Seaside Heights a time-traveling portal? Jimbo’s Bar & Grill offers a classic 1950s experience with their 1950s-themed retro diner that never disappoints. Enjoy their menu of satisfying fried foods, or complete your day with a pizza, a pile of fries, a milkshake, or a glass of soda. Jimbo’s best includes coconut shrimp, chicken fingers, and french fries.
Location: 715 Boardwalk
Cool down after a long day by the beach at JR’s Ocean Bar & Grill
Need to cool down after a long day splashing on the beach or enjoying Seaside Heights’ surroundings? JR’s Ocean Bar & Grill will serve you all the cool drinks you’ll ever need—from refreshers to non-alcoholic drinks—they’ve got you covered. JR’s Ocean Bar & Grill has several signature cocktails, an ice-cold bar, and even Maruca’s famous tomato pies.
Location: 601 Boardwalk
Or see if your taste buds can handle all the spiciness at Spicy Cantina Restaurant
Whether you’re looking for amazing Mexican food, a concert to watch, or to lounge on the balcony with a perfect oceanfront view, Spicy Cantina Restaurant has got to be your go-to. You can try their famous pairing of raspberry margarita with chicken fajitas while admiring the view you get from their balcony, or stay a little later for a concert while sipping some drinks.
Location: 500 Boardwalk
Let your inner child free at Lucky Leo’s arcade
A beach vacation won’t be complete without beating each other in arcade games while in beach attire. Lucky Leo’s wide array of classic arcade games, basketball hoops, entertainment, and modern electronic games will take you on a wild ride all over the place. Founded in 1953, Lucky Leo’s has been delivering happiness to people for over 70 years. This family-owned business welcomes a steady stream of visitors daily during summer.
Location: 2507, 315 Boardwalk
Try on some costumes and smile for a photo at Old Time Photos
The best way to appreciate your vacation and vacation destination is by taking photos so you can all look back on the moments someday. Your Insta account will be happy, and you can sneak in a laugh or two at the costumes waiting for you at the Old Time Photos. Snap a hilarious photoshoot complete with elaborately-designed set pieces and authentic costumes, and have a memorable experience you can reflect on.
Location: 215 Boardwalk
Go on an aquatic adventure at Pedals N Paddles
After going around Seaside Heights on foot and having a gastronomic adventure, a satisfying trek, or simply admiring the view of the ocean and the places you can go to, it’s time to go on a unique ocean adventure you’ll never forget. Pedals N Paddles offers many rental options for your much-awaited aquatic adventure. From kayaks to paddleboards and pedal boats and trampolines, you can do all kinds of aquatic activities more than just swimming.
Location: 1200 NJ-35
Sit back and enjoy the sunset at Stewart’s Drive-In
Enjoy some classic American food while staying away from the busy spotlight of the places along the beach, enjoying the sunset over the bay, strolling around the piers, or standing by the docks. Stewart’s Drive-In can never go wrong. They offer the classic American fast food experience paired with the great, salty atmosphere of Seaside Heights.
Location: 1200 NJ-35
Did you know that Seaside Heights is the home of The Jersey Shore House?
Does anyone remember the reality TV show called “The Jersey Shore?” I’m sure you do! That classic reality TV series made you laugh, cry, cringe, and everything else. The characters all have moved on and evolved, but the Jersey Shore house remains the same, just like how it looked about ten years ago during the show’s airing. The MTV reality show’s house can be toured, and if you have some cash to spare, you can even rent it out for yourself.
Location: 1209 Ocean Terrace
Traveling with kids? The Carteret Avenue Playground has got your back
Numerous slides, jungle gyms, swings, a miniature water park called the Sprayground, and a large field adjacent to the playground sounds like heaven for any parent or family traveling with kids. The Carteret Avenue Playground is home to the largest and most elaborate playground in all of Seaside Heights, considering it the prime location for parents and kids to have fun and maybe even relax.
Location: 1200 Bay Boulevard
Spend some dollars and dimes, or have the time of your life at Casino Pier Amusement Park
Seaside Heights’ spotlight constantly focuses on Casino Pier Amusement Park. All thanks to its thrilling rides like the Skycoaster and the SuperStorm, as well as its Ferris wheel that can be seen from afar, bumper cars, and Super Slides, and of course, the casino—people of all ages can have fun in one awesome place. The Casino Pier Amusement Park consistently lands number one on any vacationer’s list and is also the place that rakes in the most visitors.
Location: 800 Ocean Terrace
And finally, have the best of both saltwater and pool water at the Breakwater Beach Waterpark
If you want to experience adventures in the waters yet don’t want to stray too far away from the casino, the Breakwater Beach Waterpark is an extension of the Casino Pier. You can spend your day in the ocean, trying out Salem’s Scream or Revere’s Wild Ride, simply swimming and sunbathing around, or go to the Wave Pool or Lazy River and have the most relaxing time.
Location: 800 Ocean Terrace
There you have it—a collection of some of the best activities on dry land and the ocean (or pool!) in Seaside Heights. Now you won’t have difficulty deciding which is which because there’s everything for everyone. From classic beers and American food to the most diverse of cuisines and the best aquatic adventures you can try and even treks around the area, Seaside Heights in New Jersey truly has it all.
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