10 Things to do in Ocean County NJ – 2024 Ultimate Guide

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Welcome to Ocean County, NJ, a hidden gem on the East Coast that offers a plethora of exciting things to do in Ocean County NJ for travelers of all interests. From pristine beaches and charming coastal towns to vibrant boardwalks and diverse cultural attractions, Ocean County has something for everyone. Whether you’re seeking relaxation by the sea, thrilling outdoor adventures, or delicious local cuisine, this coastal destination has it all. Join us as we explore the top attractions and activities that make Ocean County a must-visit destination for your next getaway. Get ready to immerse yourself in the beauty and excitement of this dynamic region, where every corner holds a new adventure waiting to be discovered.

Popular Experiences and Attractions

Six Flags Great Adventure:

Essential Information

– Address: 1 Six Flags Blvd, Jackson, NJ 08527
– Opening Hours: Varies, check website for details
– Fee: Ticket prices start at $49.99
– Visit Duration: Full day
– Ideal for: Families, thrill-seekers


Six Flags Great Adventure in Ocean County, NJ, is a must-see destination for families and thrill-seekers alike. With a wide range of exhilarating rides, live entertainment, and delicious dining options, this amusement park offers a fun-filled day for visitors of all ages. From heart-pounding roller coasters like Kingda Ka and El Toro to family-friendly attractions like Safari Off Road Adventure and Bugs Bunny National Park, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

In addition to the thrilling rides, Six Flags Great Adventure also hosts special events throughout the year, including Fright Fest during the Halloween season and Holiday in the Park during the winter months. These events add an extra layer of excitement to an already action-packed park experience. Whether you’re looking for an adrenaline rush or a day of family fun, Six Flags Great Adventure is the perfect destination for an unforgettable day out.

Island Beach State Park:

Essential Information

– Address: 24 S 24th Ave, Seaside Park, NJ 08752
– Opening Hours: 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM daily
– Fee: $10 per vehicle for NJ residents, $20 per vehicle for non-residents
– Visit Duration: Half-day to full-day
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, beach enthusiasts, families


Island Beach State Park in Ocean County, NJ, stands out as a must-see destination for those seeking a serene escape amidst nature’s beauty. With its pristine sandy shores stretching for miles along the Atlantic Ocean, this coastal gem offers a peaceful retreat away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The park’s diverse ecosystem, encompassing dunes, maritime forests, and tidal marshes, provides a haven for a variety of wildlife, making it a paradise for nature enthusiasts and bird watchers alike.

Visitors to Island Beach State Park can enjoy a range of outdoor activities, from swimming and sunbathing on the unspoiled beaches to hiking along scenic trails that offer breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. The park also boasts excellent fishing opportunities, with anglers casting their lines in the hopes of reeling in striped bass, bluefish, and fluke. Whether you’re looking to relax by the water’s edge or explore the natural wonders of the area, Island Beach State Park offers a tranquil setting for a memorable day trip or weekend getaway.

Jenkinson’s Boardwalk:

Essential Information

– Address: 300 Ocean Ave, Point Pleasant Beach, NJ 08742
– Opening Hours: Varies by season, typically 10am-10pm
– Fee: Free admission, pay per attraction
– Visit Duration: Half-day to full day
– Ideal for: Families, beach lovers, amusement park enthusiasts


Jenkinson’s Boardwalk in Ocean County, NJ, is a vibrant seaside destination that offers a perfect blend of sun, sand, and entertainment. With its prime location right on the beach, this iconic boardwalk is a favorite among families and thrill-seekers alike. From classic boardwalk games and rides to delicious treats and live entertainment, Jenkinson’s Boardwalk has something for everyone.

One of the main draws of Jenkinson’s Boardwalk is its nostalgic charm combined with modern amenities. Visitors can stroll along the boardwalk, soaking in the lively atmosphere and enjoying the stunning ocean views. The amusement park rides provide a fun-filled experience for all ages, while the arcade games offer a touch of nostalgia for those seeking a bit of retro entertainment.

Whether you’re looking to relax on the beach, indulge in some tasty boardwalk treats, or test your skills at the games, Jenkinson’s Boardwalk has it all. With its convenient location, affordable attractions, and lively ambiance, it’s no wonder why this beloved boardwalk is a must-see destination in Ocean County, NJ.

Barnegat Lighthouse State Park:

Essential Information

– Address: 208 Broadway, Barnegat Light, NJ 08006
– Opening Hours: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm daily
– Fee: $3 for adults, $1 for children (ages 6-11)
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: Nature enthusiasts, history buffs, families


Barnegat Lighthouse State Park in Ocean County, NJ, is a must-see destination for those seeking a blend of natural beauty and historical significance. The park’s focal point is the iconic Barnegat Lighthouse, standing tall as a beacon of maritime history along the Jersey Shore. Visitors can climb to the top of the lighthouse for panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and surrounding coastal landscapes, making it a perfect spot for photography enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.

Aside from the lighthouse, the park offers a variety of outdoor activities, including picnicking, fishing, and birdwatching. The park’s diverse ecosystem provides a habitat for various bird species, making it a hotspot for birdwatchers throughout the year. Additionally, history buffs will appreciate the park’s maritime museum, which showcases artifacts and exhibits detailing the area’s rich seafaring past.

Whether you’re looking to soak in the natural beauty, learn about local history, or simply enjoy a peaceful day by the sea, Barnegat Lighthouse State Park offers something for everyone. Plan a visit to this hidden gem along the New Jersey coastline and experience the charm and allure of this historic landmark.

Tuckerton Seaport:

Essential Information

– Address: 120 W Main St, Tuckerton, NJ 08087
– Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday, 10am-5pm
– Fee: Adults $10, Seniors $9, Children (5-12) $5, Under 5 Free
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: Families, History Enthusiasts, Nature Lovers


Tuckerton Seaport in Ocean County, NJ, is a must-see destination for those seeking a glimpse into the rich maritime history of the Jersey Shore. This living history village offers a fascinating journey back in time, showcasing the traditions and crafts of the region’s early settlers. From exploring historic buildings to witnessing skilled artisans at work, visitors can immerse themselves in the authentic atmosphere of a bygone era.

One of the highlights of Tuckerton Seaport is its collection of beautifully restored boats, providing a unique insight into the area’s seafaring past. The Maritime Forest Trail offers a serene escape into nature, perfect for a leisurely stroll or birdwatching. Additionally, the Seaport hosts various events and workshops throughout the year, offering visitors the chance to engage with local culture and traditions.

Whether you’re a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or simply looking for a relaxing day out with the family, Tuckerton Seaport offers a delightful blend of education and entertainment. With its picturesque setting and engaging exhibits, this hidden gem along the Jersey Shore is sure to leave a lasting impression on all who visit.

Ocean County Mall:

Essential Information

– Address: 1201 Hooper Ave, Toms River, NJ 08753
– Opening Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am-9pm, Sunday 11am-6pm
– Fee: Free entry
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: Shopping enthusiasts, families, and tourists looking for retail therapy


Ocean County Mall in Toms River, New Jersey, is a bustling shopping destination that offers a diverse range of retail options for visitors. With over 100 stores, including popular brands and specialty shops, this mall caters to every shopper’s needs. Whether you’re looking for the latest fashion trends, home decor items, or unique gifts, Ocean County Mall has something for everyone.

Apart from shopping, the mall also features a variety of dining options, from fast food to sit-down restaurants, making it a convenient spot to grab a bite to eat during your shopping spree. Families can enjoy a day out together, exploring the different stores and entertainment options available.

With its central location and ample parking facilities, Ocean County Mall is a convenient and enjoyable place to spend a few hours indulging in retail therapy. Whether you’re a local resident or a tourist passing through the area, a visit to this vibrant shopping center is a must-do experience for anyone looking to shop ’til they drop in Ocean County, NJ.

Double Trouble State Park:

Essential Information

– Address: 581 Pinewald Keswick Rd, Bayville, NJ 08721
– Opening Hours: 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM daily
– Fee: $5 per vehicle for NJ residents, $10 per vehicle for non-residents
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, hikers, bird watchers


Double Trouble State Park in Ocean County, NJ, is a hidden gem for nature enthusiasts seeking a peaceful retreat. With its diverse ecosystem and rich history, this park offers a unique experience for visitors of all ages. The park’s trails wind through dense forests, marshlands, and cranberry bogs, providing ample opportunities for hiking and bird watching.

One of the highlights of Double Trouble State Park is the historic village, which offers a glimpse into the area’s past as a thriving cranberry farming community. Visitors can explore the restored buildings, including a general store and a sawmill, to learn about the park’s cultural heritage. The park also features picnic areas and fishing spots, making it an ideal destination for a day trip with family or friends.

Whether you’re looking to reconnect with nature or delve into local history, Double Trouble State Park is a must-see destination in Ocean County. Plan your visit to this tranquil oasis and discover the beauty of New Jersey’s natural landscapes.

Cattus Island County Park:

Essential Information

– Address: 1170 Cattus Island Blvd, Toms River, NJ 08753
– Opening Hours: Daily from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm
– Fee: Free admission
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, bird watchers, families


Cattus Island County Park in Ocean County, NJ, is a hidden gem for nature enthusiasts seeking a peaceful retreat away from the hustle and bustle of city life. With its diverse ecosystems, including salt marshes, forests, and wetlands, the park offers a unique opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the New Jersey coast. Visitors can enjoy leisurely walks along the well-maintained trails, spotting a variety of bird species and wildlife along the way.

One of the highlights of Cattus Island County Park is the Osprey Cam, providing a live feed of these magnificent birds of prey nesting and hunting in their natural habitat. The park also features educational programs and events for all ages, making it an ideal destination for families looking to learn more about the local flora and fauna. Whether you’re a seasoned bird watcher or simply looking to unwind in nature, Cattus Island County Park is a must-see destination for anyone visiting Ocean County, NJ.

Robert J. Novins Planetarium:

Essential Information

– Address: 1 College Dr, Toms River, NJ 08754
– Opening Hours: Varies, check website for schedule
– Fee: $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and children
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: Families, astronomy enthusiasts


The Robert J. Novins Planetarium in Ocean County, NJ, is a must-see destination for those fascinated by the mysteries of the universe. With its state-of-the-art facilities and engaging programs, this planetarium offers visitors a unique opportunity to explore the wonders of space in a captivating and educational setting. Whether you’re a family looking for a fun and enlightening outing or an astronomy enthusiast seeking to expand your knowledge, the Robert J. Novins Planetarium has something for everyone.

Step inside the planetarium and be transported to the depths of outer space through its mesmerizing shows and interactive exhibits. From stunning visuals of distant galaxies to informative presentations on celestial phenomena, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of the cosmos and our place within it. The knowledgeable staff are on hand to guide you through this cosmic journey, making it an enriching experience for visitors of all ages. Plan your visit to the Robert J. Novins Planetarium and prepare to be inspired by the wonders of the universe.


Essential Information

– Address: 1761 Route 9, Toms River, NJ 08755
– Opening Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am-3pm, Sunday 12pm-3pm
– Fee: Adults $10, Children (2-12) $8, Under 2 free
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: Families, nature enthusiasts


Insectropolis in Ocean County, NJ is a captivating destination that offers a unique and educational experience for visitors of all ages. This insect museum showcases the fascinating world of bugs, featuring interactive exhibits, live insect displays, and hands-on activities that are both entertaining and informative. From colorful butterflies to exotic beetles, guests have the opportunity to get up close and personal with a diverse array of insects, learning about their habitats, behaviors, and importance in the ecosystem.

A visit to Insectropolis is a must for families looking to engage their children in a fun and educational outing, as well as for nature enthusiasts seeking to deepen their understanding of the insect kingdom. With knowledgeable staff on hand to provide insights and answer questions, this museum offers a memorable experience that will leave visitors with a newfound appreciation for the often misunderstood world of insects. Whether you’re a curious explorer or simply looking for a unique day out, Insectropolis promises to delight and inspire with its fascinating displays and engaging activities.

Food and Cuisine

Pork Roll

Why is it so special:

Pork Roll, also known as Taylor Ham, is a beloved local delicacy in Ocean County, NJ. This processed meat product is typically served in a sandwich with egg and cheese on a Kaiser roll. The unique combination of flavors from the salty pork roll, creamy cheese, and fluffy eggs makes it a must-try for visitors looking to experience authentic New Jersey cuisine.

Where to Try It:

For a classic taste of Pork Roll, head to local diners like the Lighthouse Tavern in Waretown or the Four Seasons Diner in Toms River. For a gourmet twist on this traditional dish, visit Avenue Le Club in Long Branch, known for its upscale take on the Pork Roll sandwich.

Clam Chowder

Why is it so special:

Ocean County is famous for its fresh seafood, and Clam Chowder is a staple dish that showcases the region’s culinary expertise. This hearty soup is made with clams, potatoes, onions, and a creamy broth, creating a rich and flavorful dish that warms the soul. The combination of tender clams and savory broth makes this dish a favorite among locals and tourists alike.

Where to Try It:

To savor a bowl of authentic Clam Chowder, visit Bum Rogers Crabhouse in Seaside Park or Ship Bottom Shellfish in Ship Bottom. For a fine dining experience, check out Chef Mike’s ABG in Seaside Park, known for its exquisite seafood dishes, including their signature Clam Chowder.

Salt Water Taffy

Why is it so special:

Salt Water Taffy is a sweet treat that has been enjoyed by beachgoers in Ocean County for generations. This chewy candy comes in a variety of flavors, including classic options like vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry, as well as unique creations like watermelon and cotton candy. The history of Salt Water Taffy dates back to the late 19th century, making it a nostalgic and iconic snack for visitors to indulge in.

Where to Try It:

To sample a selection of Salt Water Taffy flavors, visit local candy shops like Van Holten’s Chocolates & Sweet Shop in Seaside Heights or The Original Fudge Kitchen

Events and Festivals

Annual Ocean County Decoy and Gunning Show

The Annual Ocean County Decoy and Gunning Show is a popular event that celebrates the rich history of waterfowl hunting and decoy carving in the region. Visitors can enjoy a variety of activities such as decoy carving demonstrations, gunning contests, and wildlife art exhibits. This event is a great opportunity for tourists to learn about the local hunting traditions and craftsmanship while enjoying the beautiful surroundings of Ocean County.

Seaside Heights St. Patrick’s Day Parade

The Seaside Heights St. Patrick’s Day Parade is a festive event that attracts both locals and tourists to celebrate Irish culture and heritage. Visitors can enjoy traditional Irish music, dance performances, and a colorful parade featuring marching bands and floats. This event is a fun and family-friendly way to experience the lively atmosphere of Ocean County during the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.

Beach Haven Pirate’s Day

Beach Haven Pirate’s Day is a thrilling event that transforms the town into a pirate-themed extravaganza. Visitors can witness exciting pirate reenactments, treasure hunts, and costume contests throughout the day. This event is perfect for families and pirate enthusiasts looking to immerse themselves in a day of swashbuckling fun by the beautiful beaches of Ocean County.

Interesting Facts

– Ocean County, NJ is home to the second-largest Halloween parade in the world, held annually in the town of Toms River.
– The county boasts over 40 miles of beautiful coastline along the Jersey Shore, offering a variety of beaches and waterfront activities.
– Ocean County is known for its diverse wildlife, including the presence of the endangered piping plover bird species along its shores.

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