Jim and I headed for the Jersey Shore after very little research and with little to go on. Not my style, I know, but the elation being able to snag a seat at Egg on Father's Day made me a bit reckless. Friend Mike had told me of a few places to try in Belmar: Klein's and Strollos Italian Ice. Tummies became too full to try the ice cream ourselves (though Mike swears it's delicious) but Klein's is a nice environment. Though, to be completely candid, they served the unthinkable: sub par oysters! So just stay clear of the oysters and you'll be fine.
After lunch we missed the Belmar boardwalk as we drove through town and ended up turned around and headed North again. No problem, I said, as a Springsteen fan, we'll just go to Asbury Park. Well, Asbury Park is… odd and decrepit, but so worth a drive-by at least to see the really old school boardwalk buildings that are crumbling. Not so much worth the visit? The sad urban blight and the weird dude that popped up behind our car begging for money and a ride to New York City. Not that we're entirely sheltered and heartless (maybe we are), we decided to head back to Belmar instead of dealing with Mr Crazy and found the beach and boardwalk on our second try.
The beach requires badges which cost $7.00 for one time use and $50.00 for a season. I would say it's not a bad deal. The beach was clean and well maintained offering volley ball, surfing, para-sailing, and super soft sand. Since we weren't wearing bathing suits, we paid nothing to stroll the boardwalk and people watch.
And let me tell you, we both noticed how totally in shape these people were. It was kind of remarkable compared to other local beaches. It's only about a two hour drive out of the city.