A Different Beach in Sandy Hook, New Jersey

Oceanside on Sandy Hook - photos by Dawn Harvey

In a new travel article by Dawn Harvey, a different sort of beach is discussed as an alternative in New Jersey. From good swimming and surfing to history, the beach has it all. Located only an hour from Manhattan at the top of the Jersey shore, there’s plenty to do there. Here’s a sample from the article.

Most people come to Sandy Hook for its outdoor appeal. Surfing, kite surfing, and windsurfing are popular activities during summer months, otherwise known as peak season. The park also features a five-mile-long pathway for walkers, cyclists, and runners.

Sandy Hook is also home to the largest nude beach in the entire northeast, Gunnison Beach, located at the northern end of the island near Fort Hancock. It is the only nude beach in New Jersey and receives more than 5,000 visitors a year. Friends of Gunnison Beach, an American Association for Nude Recreation (AANR) affiliated club, hosts social events such as dinner parties, cruises, and dances.

Most beaches don’t have a military base, which is perhaps the most interesting thing about Sandy Hook. Before the Ambrose Channel was built at the turn of the 20th century, ships could only gain access to New York City by passing through the waters off the coast of Sandy Hook – making this a very strategic location.

Fort Hancock was established during the war of 1812 and was the site of the country’s first US Army proving ground. It also served as harbor defenses for New York, Long Island, and New Jersey during World War II. For more information, visit the Fort Hancock museum located inside the former Post Guard House. The museum features a jail cell exhibit, so you can see exactly what is was like to be a soldier under arrest.

Sandy Hook also features the oldest working lighthouse in the country. When it was built in 1764, it was only 500 feet from the water. Due to ocean currents, it’s now one and a half miles from the northern end of the park. Tours of the lighthouse are available from April through December.

Since Sandy Hook is closed between dusk and dawn, there are no lodging options available to the public; however, the neighboring town of Highlands, New Jersey is known for its quality B&Bs. This town lives up to its name – it’s the highest point on the Atlantic seaboard between Maine and Mexico.

You can read the rest of Harvey’s article at GoNOMAD.com