Kid-Friendly Things To Do In LBI For The Best Day Ever


We all may be dreaming of an island vacay right about now, and luckily in New Jersey, you can get one—Long Beach Island or “LBI” as it is affectionately known, is your go-to for a vacation or day trip that will feel like an escape without going far. Thanks to its location that sits between the Atlantic Ocean and Barnegat Bay, LBI has 18 miles of beautiful beaches where you can stretch out on the sand for hours listening to crashing surf or watch your kids play in calm bay waters. And when you need a break from the sun and the sand, there are so many family-friendly things to do—go back in time to check out a historic lighthouse, slide down a swirling waterslide or get your kids up on a board for the first time with a private surf lesson. Scroll down for the best things to do in LBI with kids this summer.

featured image via @ianpoley

Psst! We love seeing your stay-at-home and socially distanced New Jersey adventures. Be sure to tag your photos with #NJMOM and @njmom for a chance to be featured in our round-up next week.

Here are 8 things to do in LBI with kids this summer:

Get a birds-eye view of the Long Beach Island on a parasail

nj mom things to do in LBI with kids long beach island new jersey

Flying high above LBI via @lbiparasail

Thrill-seeking kids will be the first to spot these parasails gliding high above the coastline, and after that sighting, you’ll see them everywhere—LBI Parasail is one of LBI’s most popular attractions. Glide like a bird above the coastline and take in the view of the beautiful beaches. The age minimum is 5 with an adult, so if your littles are game (and you can stomach it), give it a whirl and feel safe doing it, since this company is US Coast Guard inspected and certified for safety.
Lighthouse Marina
W 6th St
Barnegat Light, NJ 08006

Take in a show

nj mom things to do in LBI with kids long beach island new jersey

It’s showtime rain or shine at Surflight’s Big Top theater via @surflighttheatre

Indoor stage shows are slowly coming back, but in the meantime, Surflight Theatre in Beach Haven is bringing classic children’s musicals and stories to life on a tented outdoor stage through September. Shows include Annie, Wizard of Oz, Cinderella, The Little Mermaid, and fun-themed nights like Family Comedy. Can’t get to the musicals? Stop by for delicious shakes and sundaes in their adjoining Show Place Ice Cream Parlor, which features a singing waitstaff under a tent.
201 Engleside Ave
Beach Haven, NJ 08008
Shows Wednesday through Sunday until mid-September

(609) 492-9477

Catch a wave

nj mom things to do in LBI long beach island new jersey

Grab a board and hit the waves via @lbisurfguru

The surf’s up in LBI, making it one of the best places to introduce the sport to kids. LBI Surf Guru will take first-timers out on beginner-friendly waves and keeps an eye on the weather and wave patterns to make sure kids feel comfortable in the surf. Want a tamer ride through the bay? Brighton Beach Surf Shop has been serving the community for over 50 years and has stand-up paddleboards for rent with lessons available through their Matador Surf School (including sessions for kids with special needs).
LBI Surf Guru
Ship Bottom, NJ 08008
(856) 630-4437

Brighton Beach Surf Shop
8511 South Long Beach Blvd
Long Beach, NJ 08008
(609) 492-0342

Slip and slide the day away

thunderingwaterparklbi longbeach island

Splash the day away at Thundering Surf Waterpark. Photo credit: Thundering Surf Waterpark 

Looking to cool down without going to the beach in LBI? Head to Thundering Surf Waterpark for a refreshing day of wet adventure. Older kids can get a thrill from sliding down a whirling waterslide or chilling as they float down the lazy river while littles enjoy the slides and tipping buckets at Cowabunga Beach, a water-themed playground. The family-run park, which has been operating since 1977, is still staying safe this summer, with staff wearing masks, capacity is limited to 50%, and there are markers to maintain distancing.
300 Taylor Ave.
Beach Haven, NJ 08008

Open daily 9:30 AM -5 PM
(609) 492-0869

Make your afternoon tee time

nj mom things to do in LBI with kids long beach island new jersey

Score a hole in one with the fam via @hartlandgolf

Hit the front and the back nine with a competitive game of mini golf at Hartland Golf and Arcade—18 holes of LBI family fun that gives everyone a fair chance to be on par. If your fam is feeling their game, you can sign up for their weekly Wednesday morning tournaments to compete against other players. You can also make golf memories at Sand Trap, which boasts a beachy theme complete with a mini lighthouse.
Hartland Golf & Arcade
28th Street and Long Beach Boulevard
Long Beach Township, NJ 08008

Open daily – 9 AM-10 PM
(609) 494-7776

The Sand Trap
23rd & Long Beach Blvd.
Ship Bottom, NJ 08008
Open daily – 8AM – 10:30PM
(609) 494-3185

Relive the maritime history of Long Beach Island in New Jersey

nj mom things to do in LBI with kids long beach island new jersey

Take in the history and the view via @barnegatlightnj

Pack a picnic or take a walk around the iconic Barnegat Lighthouse State Park located on the northern tip of Long Beach Island. This landmark park includes a maritime forest, lighthouse, and access to excellent birding and fishing sites. While the picnic and walkways are the only areas open for now, you can still show your kids the place that was a “change of course” point for coastal vessels going to New York. Want more history? Check out the NJ Maritime Museum in Beach Haven, a nautical-themed museum packed with shipwreck finds photos, navigation equipment, and more.
208 Broadway
Barnegat Light, NJ 08006
Open daily – 8AM – 8PM (buildings closed due to COVID-19)
(609) 494-2016

NJ Maritime Museum (call for opening hours and COVID-19 info)
528 Dock Road
Beach Haven, 08008
(609) 492-0202

Spend sunset on the beach with your family

Wind down an LBI Friday night with a night of music on the beach at Fire Pit Fridays, live concerts on the beach that happen through September. Each performance features a shore band, so bring your blankets, beach chairs, and coolers and set your family up to sway to sounds on the sand. All concerts are weather permitting, so be sure to check their Facebook page for updates before you go.
68th Street Beach
Long Beach Township, NJ 08008
(609) 361-1000

Take a ride at Fantasy Island LBI

nj mom things to do in LBI with kids long beach island new jersey

You littles will have a blast on all the different rides via @fantasyislandlbi.

After a day at the beach playing in the water and building sandcastles, head home, shower off, grab a bite to eat, and then head to Fantasy Island for an evening of amusement park fun in LBI. With a full arcade, boardwalk games, and tons of rides, from classics like the Ferris wheel and bumper cars to unique “Fantasy Island” attractions like Hang Ten and Honey Bees, there’s something for the whole family to enjoy.
Fantasy Island Amusement Park
750 N Bay Ave
Beach Haven, NJ 08008
(609) 492-4000


About Author

Jamelia is a first-time, stay-at-home mom obsessed with all things style and motherhood. She has always loved storytelling and dabbling in creative things so when she isn’t mommin’ you can find her snapping pictures, trying a new skill, and inspiring others on her personal blog. Her favorite places around New Jersey are hands-down Ship Bottom Bay Beach in LBI and Cape May.

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