Travel Tuesday:Beaches Edition

Where in the world has Media Works been?

It’s officially our first Travel Tuesday post of the summer, so we’re starting summer 2012 off right with our favorite beaches post! Don’t forget sunscreen this summer before you head to the sun & sand!

Long Beach, NY

If you’re looking for a beach getaway in the North East, summer or winter, Long Beach is the town for you! This beach town is easily accessible from NYC by taking the Long Island Rail Road to the Long Beach station. Once you arrive, walk 4 blocks to the beach and you’ll be in your happy place!

If you’re looking to stay in Long Beach for more than the day (which we suggest), make a reservation at the Allegria Hotel. This modern hotel is a new addition to Long Beach and has an outrageous roof top pool that overlooks the ocean.

After enjoying a nice day on the beach, take a cab to the West End, where you can find great restaurants, vibrant bar scenes and great people watching!

Some of our favorite restaurants are:

  • Paninis and Bikinis – You can stop here for a quick breakfast or lunch and scarf down a delicious sandwich.
  • The Beach House – This beachy bar is ideal for a happy hour after enjoying a long day on the beach. You can sit outside and enjoy live music. If you happen to be there on a night JAHSTIX is playing, you will not be disappointed from the reggae music scene!
  • Pop’s Seafood Shack – Pops makes you feel as if you’re on an exotic island with the private hut tables on the sand, live music and delicious seafood. This restaurant is located in Island Park, which is a quick drive from Long Beach.
  • Ralph’s – If you’re looking for a treat after breakfast, lunch or dinner, stop by Ralph’s for  the world’s best Italian Ices!

Katama Beach, Martha’s Vineyard

If you find yourself in Martha’s Vineyard, a visit to Katama (South) Beach is worth it.

The beach is a 3 mile stretch on the South Shore of the island, along the Atlantic Ocean. Located about 3-4 miles from the beautiful town of Edgartown, it is an easy bike ride from the town. The beach is pristine but has no amenities; no food vendors or shops or stands to rent chairs so you do have to bring your own ‘supplies’ to get you through the day.

If you want to venture off the beach, there is a nearby airport for small private planes only and they have a small diner where you can get sandwiches or breakfast.

A great resort that’s within walking distance of Katama Beach is the Winnetu Resort. There are various types of rooms and cottages to accommodate everyone, along with a pool, restaurants, tennis, organized activities, a fitness center, expansive grounds and a shuttle into Edgartown. It is pricey, but a relaxing place to stay.

After the beach, venture into Edgartown and see the Edgartown Lighthouse and the beautiful homes on the water. There are several restaurants; our favorite is Chesca’s. Sit on their porch in one of the rocking chairs and relax while you wait for your table. The waterfront homes are enviable and it is worth a stroll or bike ride around town just to see the beautiful homes.

Bethany Beach, DE

Bethany Beach is the perfect location for a family vacation. Situated halfway between the louder and usually more crowded areas of Ocean City, MD and Rehoboth Beach, DE, Bethany provides a quiet, small-town beach feeling without sacrificing great shopping and dining.

Staying at Sea Colony is like being on a cruise without the rocking. There are activities and exercise classes for those who are interested, or you can just relax on the beach.  In addition to Sea Colony, there are beautiful homes with less populated beaches.

Rehoboth is a 20 minute drive and has a wonderful selection of restaurants for either family or adult-only dining.  In addition, the boardwalk/ride scene in Rehoboth is less crazy than Ocean City’s.  Some of our favorite restaurants include La La Land and The Back Porch.

In addition, Rehoboth is known for having great outlet shopping and because it’s in Delaware and there is no sales tax!!

Outer Banks, NC
Written by Megan

Each year, we rent a huge beach house in the Outer Banks. We pack up our cars with lots of food, drinks and supplies and make the six hour drive to the North Carolina shores.  Over the years, this trek has become a tradition, where we’ve experienced adventure, fun, love, friendship, near-tragedy and a few minor brushes with the law over some contraband fireworks.

 There’s something about the peaceful beaches, the clear blue skies and sand dunes that seems to heal us. One year, we watched as three of our friends were pulled from a nasty riptide. We visited the OBX just weeks after our friend passed away in a sudden boating accident. On September 11th, 2001, we were just waking up to a sunny morning, and sat in front of the TV as the twin towers fell. We hunkered down in a hot tub after the power went out during Gustav, we were evacuated to Nags Head during Ophelia, and last year, we had to switch our plans to stay in Kitty Hawk once Irene literally washed away a portion of Hwy. 12.

Yet despite it all, we’re still planning to visit the Outer Banks again this year. To see what these beaches have to offer, here are a few suggestions:

  • Visit the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse: Admire the majesty of the Cape Hatteras lighthouse from the ground, or climb the 248 iron steps to the top and experience the Outer Banks from an aerial view.
  • Tour the Wright Brothers Memorial/Jockey’s Ridge State Park: Once you’ve been to the Wright Brothers Memorial to see the actual gliders the Wright Brothers flew, stand at the top of Jockey’s Ridge where their first flight took place. It’s amazing, and one of the largest “moving” sand dunes in the world.
  • Visit the Rodanthe Pier: The Rodanthe pier has been battered and beaten throughout the years, but recently went through some renovations. Fishermen catch blue fish, flounder and skate from the end, but you may be able to see skate, stingrays, blue-tipped sharks and even some sea turtles, which have a protected nesting area just down the beach.
  • Take the Ferry to Ocracoke Island: The only way to get onto Ocracoke Island is by ferry. Once you’re there, check out the quaint shops, the beautiful lighthouse, the wild ponies, and of course Blackbeard’s favorite spot: Teach’s Hole.
  • Learn to Kiteboard: Take a kiteboarding lesson and learn how to ride the waves on the ocean or the sound with a surfboard at your feet and a huge kite above you!
  • Visit the “Nights in Rodanthe” House:  Until 2010, you could walk the beach in Rodanthe and stand beside “Serendipity”, the house that was featured in the movie “Nights in Rodanthe.” Year after year, we’d watch as this house got closer and closer to falling into the ocean. Eventually, it was condemned, but the owners had the house moved farther down the beach. It is now at 23285 Beacon Rd in Rodanthe. Check it out!

 

Mantoloking, NJ
Written by Cheryl

One of our favorite beaches is Mantoloking, NJ.  Many of the townspeople have been coming to this beach for generations, and if you are looking for a laid-back family vacation, this a great place to visit during the summer months.  Many of the beaches are family-oriented, quiet and not very crowded.

I am lucky because my in-laws own a house there, which allows us to visit the beach often.  Through the summers, we have become friendly with other families who also vacation there.  One of the biggest celebrations the town has is for the 4th of July.  There is a small parade through town, which begins and ends at the Yacht Club.  There are old-time cars and fire engines, and all of the kids decorate their bikes and ride the parade route too.  After the parade, there are games for the kids, followed by food and drinks at the Yacht Club.  Everything is coordinated by the residents, and it is nice to see everyone working together to pull off such a fun event.

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