Plus all the great bars and restaurants

July 3, 2019

Seeing Asbury Park on a list of America's best beach towns would have unthinkable ten years ago. But now?  Totally belongs.  

What Thrillist says:

"In the not-so-distant past, Asbury Park was best known as a dated Springsteen reference -- a once great tourist mecca, turned as stale as months-old saltwater taffy. Now, to call Asbury Park a beach town on the upswing would be selling it insultingly short. AP's iconic boardwalk vibes have now made way for a "Brooklyn on the beach" feel. You want absurdly good live music? The Saint, Wonder Bar, and the Stone Pony are three legendary venues that would all get top billing in any other beach town. You want to drink? Asbury Festhalle and Biergarten, the always-lively Johnny Mac's, and the delightfully divey Bond Street bar top the list of the 50-plus bars in town. You want… uh… vintage pinball? The Silverball Museum Arcade has more than 600 machines. A bustling art scene, a longstanding LGBTQ community, and (obviously) a beautiful beach make Asbury Park worth fully greeting again, boss. 

Must eat/drink: For a solid middle ground between fancy and beachy-casual, check out Moonstruck for a mediterranean menu in a classic Jersey shore Victorian home. Asbury Park sneakily has one of the best pizzerias in the country in Talula's, and Pop's Garage is a cheap-as-hell beachside favorite, slinging two-for-$6 tacos and $3 happy hour beers.

Don't leave without: Perusing -- and posing in front of -- the many murals of Sunset Pavilion. It's a perfect (macro?) dose of AP's art community, and ideal beachside Instagram fodder."

And if you like seeing strangers show too much in teeny Speedos, you'll love the Beach Bar beach. ;-)