Ever considered a New York surfing holiday? While surfing in Manhattan is limited to browsing the internet, there are many top surf spots near NYC.
New York City is unlikely to make it to the top of the list of surfing destinations. And with so much financial, cultural, and political bustle, the city is often overlooked as a surfing destination altogether.
But among New Yorkers there is a thriving surf scene. Most beaches within reach offer lessons for beginners and gear hire. Plus there can be serious waves for the more experienced.
New York surfing holiday
So if you are visiting NYC getting out on the water is perfectly possible. You can easily fit some surfing around visits to the Empire State Building, Central Park and the Statue of Liberty. You could even catch some waves in the day and a show in the evening.
Ellis Island and it’s immigration museum is worth a visit. Between 1892 and 1954 more than 12 million immigrants arrived in the US via Ellis Island. So it is a popular destination for those using U.S. Census Records to track their ancestors.
Shopping, food and nightlife are top of the list for most visitors. There are also plenty of other adventure activities in NYC. However, a New York surfing holiday will enable you to see a very different side of the city and its surroundings.
Top surf spots near NYC
Manhattan is the converging point of two notable Atlantic coastlines: Long Island and New Jersey. The beaches and shores that stretch east and south of the great metropolis can drum up some of the fine waves.
Here are the best places to find surf in and around New York City. Winter produces the most consistent waves, so don’t forget your hood and boots!
To the east, Long Island offers a smattering of great spots. This includes the site of the Quiksilver Pro in Long Beach – unfortunately last run in 2011. Rockaway is the closest spot to NYC with a couple of zones set aside for surfing.
The ‘S’ Line of NYCs subway grid will drop you off a few blocks from the breakers at 92nd street in Rockaway. Simply disregard the odd looks you’ll get lugging a board bag through the turnstiles.
The more adventurous can opt for a two-hour Long Island Rail Road journey to the tip of the island. The famed lineups at the Lighthouse or Ditch Plains in Montauk can be excellent.
In between, you’ll find plenty of waves at numerous top surf spots near NYC. A trip to Robert Moses State Park and Lido Beach is usually worthwhile.
Extending south of Manhattan’s gridlock and skyscrapers is the New Jersey coastline. You’ll probably have heard it referred to as the Jersey Shore.
Take New Jersey Transit Coast Line and get off at Belmar where there is a spread out beach break that works with almost any swell. Monmouth Beach is arguably the pinnacle of New Jersey surfing and gets as good as any wave in Eastern USA.
Even further south, explore the Atlantic City Pier and Ventnor for more sandy peaks. They are around two hours from central Manhattan.
When to surf New York?
A good time of year for a New York surfing holiday is in the late autumn. Water temperature are more reasonable than winter and Caribbean hurricanes send solid swells to these exposed breaks.
As the top surf spots near NYC are all a little out of Manhattan it is probably best to stay on Long Island, Jersey Shore or Atlantic City. You can then visit the sites of the city for a day or two when the surf is not up!
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