Ocean City rests on a small barrier island just off the southeastern tip of New Jersey, and is one of the premier family vacation destinations in the area. Visitors who fancy a leisurely trip to this Atlantic shoreline community will find a wide range of excellent activities and waterfront fun. The island's landscape is characterized by rolling dunes and wetlands, and was once the home of Native American tribes who lived off the abundant ocean waters. The area was inhabited by European settlers as far back as the mid-1800s, and was established as a Christian community that banned the sale and consumption of alcohol. That prohibition is still in effect to this day. The local economy was based largely on tourism since its founding, and today the city remains to be a prime destination for families in search of some fun in the sun during the summer months.
The Ocean City summers are known to be warm and peaceful with great conditions for outdoor fun. Temperatures can drop down below freezing during the later months of winter, but due to the city's close proximity to the coast, it enjoys relatively mild conditions throughout much of the year.
The main draw of this coastal community is its expansive beaches, oceanfront boardwalk and a wide selection of deep-sea excursions. Whether you're in the mood to soak up some rays sprawled out on warm sands, reel in the catch of a lifetime or paddle through the oceanic currents of the Atlantic, Ocean City has you covered.
Ocean City Fishing Center
Fishermen and anglers of all ages should charter a deep sea excursion with the friendly staff at the Ocean City Fishing Center. Party boat fishing tours, private charters, scenic cruises and more await all who venture into this seaside establishment. Even if you forgot your rod and tackle box, the facility boasts a huge selection of the best gear, bait and accessories that can be purchased or rented, depending on your needs. After you're outfitted and ready to drop a line, join Captain Tim Barrus aboard the North Star for a full-day or afternoon trip out into the abundant waters of the Atlantic. After you return from your voyage, be sure to stop by the shop to have your catch cleaned and filleted by the experts at the Ocean City Fishing Center.
Wet-N-Wild Wave Runner Rentals
If you're hoping to spend a day or two jetting across the pristine blue ocean currents at top speed, rent a jet-ski or wave runner from the friendly folks at Wet-N-Wild Wave Runner Rentals. Take your craft out on the water, carve your way through the ocean swells and constant waves. The experienced staff will make every effort to instruct you on the use of each jet-ski or wave runner, and outfit you with all the safety equipment necessary to have a great day out on the water.
Visitors who are in the mood for a leisurely paddle over coastal waters can find paddle boards, kayaks, canoes, surf boards and more at Harbor Outfitters. Guided tours are available and the amiable staff will direct you toward all the best spots around the island. Surfing and paddle boarding lessons are also available to help newcomers learn the proper techniques and tricks that make these water sports such a blast. After a fun day out on the water, rent bicycles or electric cars to traverse the island further inland.
A vacation to Ocean City wouldn't be complete without a day at the beach. The community boasts an extensive shoreline as well as a number of family-friendly beaches. Public access beaches, such as the Waverly Boulevard, 7th Street and 16th Street beaches are a perfect place to start, and are often bustling with food and beverage vendors, friendly beach-goers and a variety of colorful characters.
This expansive boardwalk stretches out over two and a half miles along the Jersey shoreline, and is home to hundreds of little shops, eateries, amusement parks and so much more. Ocean City is an alcohol-free community so many of the attractions are geared toward family-friendly fun. Take a ride on the historic ferris wheel, let loose a scream on one of the thrilling roller coasters or settle into a great meal at a hole-in-the-wall dining establishment. The boardwalk is open from dawn to well after dusk, so anytime is a good time to stop in and see what's happening.
McCullough's Emerald Golf Links
Guests hoping to enjoy a day walking through pristine fairways, manicured greens and lush green foliage should play a round at McCullough's Emerald Golf Links. The Scottish-inspired design is a traditional masterpiece, combining the challenging obstacles of deep bunkers and water hazards with the rolling hills and tangled roughs of links-style courses. Rental clubs are available to patrons who may have forgotten their clubs at home. After a round at McCullough's you'll find that these links will test every shot in your arsenal.
For more tips on visiting the area, check out our guide to
Ocean City NJ vacations