Long Beach Island was discovered by Dutch explorer Cornelius Jacobsen May in 1614. The island became an important whaling and fishing center. Once discovered by the well to do, hunting and fishing clubs were formed and summer homes were built. The island?s only access was by boat, making it all the more exclusive. A railroad bridge was built in 1886 and later a causeway for auto traffic. The railroad bridge burned, leaving ferries and the causeway as the only ways to reach the island. Today, other than by boat, the causeway bridge is the only access to the island.
There are over 20 communities on Long Beach Island. Some, like Barnegat Light, Beach Haven, Harvey Cedars, Ship Bottom and Surf City, are incorporated towns. Long Beach Township, also incorporated, includes the communities of Beach Haven Crest, Beach Haven Gardens, Beach Haven Inlet, Beach Haven Park, Beach Haven Terrace, Brant Beach, Brighton Beach, Haven Beach, High Bar Harbour, Holgate, Loveladies, North Beach, North Beach Haven, Peahala Park, South Beach Haven, Spray Beach, and The Dunes.
Beach Haven, on the south end of Long Beach Island, was founded in 1874 as a planned resort community. It is the called The Queen City and features restored Victorian seaside homes and Cape Cod style cottages. This busy beach town?s many shops and restaurants are located on Bay Avenue. Fantasy Island Amusement Park, the only amusement park on Long Beach Island, and Thundering Surf Water Slide are in Beach Haven. The Long Beach Island Historical Museum, the Surflight Theater and Veterans Bicentennial Park are part of Beach Haven?s historical district. Some of the island?s best beaches are in Beach Haven.
Harvey Cedars, in the northern part of Long Beach Island, is a quiet community with activities oriented toward families. Special events are held at Municipal Park and at the Fire House. There is playground equipment, volleyball courts, baseball fields, bocce courts and a paved fitness track in Harvey Cedars. The beach includes handicap access and the bay offers safe swimming for children.
Ship Bottom, named for the rescue of a woman from the bottom of a wrecked and beached schooner, was founded in 1817. This is the first Long Beach Island community at the end of New Jersey State Route 72 ? the only road onto the island. Commercial businesses, shops, stores, and restaurants abound. The town holds an annual Easter Egg Hunt and Memorial Day service. The volunteer fire company hosts an annual circus and a carnival. The Christmas Parade is sponsored by the Ship Bottom Merchants Association.
Surf City, just north of Ship Bottom, has the only beaches on Long Beach Island that are designated for surfing. The bay offers calm-water swimming. Along Division Avenue are basketball courts and a playground. Long Beach Township is made up of 12 miles of non-contiguous area and 17 communities. The Township?s beaches represent 10% of the entire New Jersey coastline. Bay beaches are perfect for those who want to swim in calm water while ocean beaches are the place for wave riding and wind surfing. The southern end of Long Beach Township is more commercialized than the northern areas.
Loveladies, part of Long Beach Township, is the newest development on Long Beach Island. There are no hotels in Loveladies, which consists of privately owned homes that are used mostly during the summer season. Loveladies Harbor, Manahawkin Harbor and Little Egg Harbor are between the mainland and the island.
At the northern end of the island sits Barnegat Lighthouse. No longer used to direct sailors, the lighthouse is part of Barnegat Lighthouse State Park where picnicking and fishing are popular activities. The lighthouse is open to the public during the summer.
Your Real Estate Experts in Long Beach Island, New Jersey