May 23, 2016
A stone's throw away from the glitz and glamour of Atlantic City lies Brigantine Beach, which offers a more tranquil shore attitude. In many ways, the long, sprawling beaches and outdoor activity options represent the perfect contrast to A.C.'s casinos and clubs. We'll let Brigantine describe itself:
Brigantine Beach is South Jersey's best kept secret ~ is a beautiful, pristine hideaway for families seeking a safe, peaceful haven. Our community is naturally friendly. Cultured events and recreational activities provide the opportunity to enjoy quality time with family, friends and visitors.
Related Content: 2016 South Jersey Shore beach guide
If you're heading to Brigantine this summer, here are the basics you need to know:
Yup, you'll need one. Here are the rates:
• Seasonal: $15 through May, $18 starting June 1
• Daily: $8
• Weekly: $14
• Seniors (60-64): $8 during May, $18 after May 31
• Seniors over 65: One free tag with identification
Those who are disabled, active military members and veterans are eligible for discounts. Tags can be purchased on the beach from inspectors or at the Beach Fee Office at 265 42nd St. More information on tags can be found by calling the office at 609-264-7350 or by clicking here.
The Brigantine Beach Patrol begins keeping watch from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Memorial Day weekend for weekends only at the Second and 15th street beaches. Starting June 15, full staffing goes into effect for almost the entire length of the beach until Labor Day (full list of guarded beaches here). After Labor Day, three beaches — Second, 15th and 26th streets — remain guarded for three weekends.
The rule that separates Brigantine from other Jersey Shore towns is the one allowing you to pull your four-wheel-drive vehicle right up onto the beach. You'll need a permit, which will cost you $175. Discounts are available for vehicle owners over 60 and the permanently disabled at $85.
Permits can be purchased at city offices and the same place you grab your beach tags, at 265 42nd St. You can enter the beach by way of The Cove on the southern tip of the island — that's where, on the right weekend, you'll see something like this:
More info on four-wheelers can be found here.
Surfing is permitted at the 10th and 12th street beaches, as well as north of the South End Jetty and south of the Sandy Lane bathing area. Kite flying is permitted at 34th and 38th streets. Dogs are not permitted on the beach from Memorial Day through September.
More information can be found here.
Parking permits are available for municipal lots. They cost $25 for the season and $8 for the day and can be purchased at city offices as well as at 265 42nd St. Municipal lots are located at Second Street and Roosevelt Boulevard, 16th Street and Ocean Avenue, 26th Street and Ocean Avenue, 34th Street and Ocean Avenue and 38th Street and Ocean Avenue.
The Brigantine Beach Chamber of Commerce keeps a calendar of local events. Some recurring activities are a farmers market and an art walk, with some bigger events — an air show, a sandcastle building contest and a tour of the island's "secret" gardens, for example — planned for later in the summer. You can see the full calendar here.
The Marine Mammal Stranding Center is a nonprofit that saves marine animals that are stranded on the shore. The center offers summer educational opportunities for kids and even internships for college students.
The Chamber of Commerce also keeps a directory of bars and restaurants that can be seen here.