Long Island is a densely populated island in southeastern New York. While its food is delicious and accommodations are luxurious, its stunning coastline is what draws many people here. In fact, Long Island is home to some of the most amazing beaches in New York. In this guide, we’re going to take you through the 15 best Long Island beaches.
In Long Island, you can find white sand beaches, expansive boardwalks, exciting beach activities, and top-notch ocean waters. With so many options, there’s something for all kinds of beachgoers and travelers. We hope you find your next New York beach destination below!
1. Jones Beach State Park
Jones Beach State Park is home to one of the busiest beaches in New York, with up to 6-8 million visitors each year. It features almost every activity you can think of across 6 miles of sandy ocean beach and expands over 2,400 acres of maritime environment along Long Island’s south shore. It’s a true outdoor paradise!
On warm summer days, you’ll find beachgoers lining the beach enjoying many activities. However, there are also many other areas of the park visitors can appreciate.
At Jones Beach State Park, you can find opportunities for swimming, water activities, and sand sports. You can also birdwatch, play mini-golf, and explore many nature trails. The fishing pier welcomes anglers while the boat basin attracts boaters.
If you’re looking to get active, you can check out the many sports courts and activities. There’s pickleball, basketball, volleyball, and table tennis.
There’s also a 2-mile boardwalk at Jones Beach State Park. You can stroll, rollerblade, eat, and take in the scenery along the boardwalk.
2. Watch Hill
Watch Hill is on Fire Island National Seashore off the coast of Long Island, and the National Park Service operates it. Most people who visit this somewhat remote beach go to the Watch Hill Campground.
Although this beach and its surrounding area are relatively simple, it’s one of the most picturesque beaches around Long Island, offering soft sand and expansive views. Along with its picture-perfect scenery, guided canoe trips and bird watching are some of the biggest attractions at Watch Hill.
With the beautiful nature surrounding Fire Island National Seashore, we highly recommend camping and giving yourself a few days to explore.
The campground is situated in a protected area behind the dunes and is a short walk from the beach. You can choose from wilderness to glamping campsites, all of which offer basic amenities.
Watch Hill is a top spot for getting away from the hustle and relaxing. It’s also a great place to bring your pets.
3. Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
The 95-acre Sagamore Hill National Historic Site was once the home of Theodore Roosevelt. Today, it’s an area that offers various outdoor and historical activities, including a nature trail leading to a beach.
Of the Long Island Sound beaches, Sagamore Hill offers one of the most serene atmospheres. It’s fun to explore the 83-acre national park, which is home to a museum (once Roosevelt’s home), a scenic nature trail, wildlife, and beach access.
Not only did Roosevelt love dogs, but Sagamore Hill also welcomes pets. Your leashed dog can join you on the rocky beach.
Although it’s not the best beach for swimming, it’s well worth visiting. This quiet beachfront is an excellent place to relax, observe sea life, and collect pebbles and shells.
4. Robert Moses State Park
If you’re looking for Long Island beaches with waves, Robert Moses State Park is the place to go. This popular beachfront stretches across 5 miles in an 875-acre state park.
With so many activities, there’s something for everyone at Robert Moses State Park. Visitors can enjoy surfing, swimming, surf fishing, and boogie boarding.
At Robert Moses State Park, you can also find a golf course, nature path, beach shops, and concessions. Be sure to check out the historic Fire Island Lighthouse, too.
5. Sunken Meadow State Park
Sunken Meadow State Park is on the north shore and is one of the best beaches on Long Island for incredible views of the sound and Connecticut in the distance. It’s backed by bluffs and offers a mixed variety of flora and fauna.
Covering over 1,200 acres, Sunken Meadow Park is one of Long Island’s largest parks. At the long beach, you can find calm waters great for stand-up paddle boarding, swimming, and kayaking. There’s also a 3/4-mile boardwalk that’s great for strolling and enjoying the panorama.
One thing to note is that though it’s a sandy beach, there are rocks and pebbles. Many visitors prefer wearing beach shoes, which help when exploring the shoreline and playing in the water.
You can also find soccer fields, baseball fields, multiple playgrounds, green spaces for picnics, and a golf course at the park. There are also hiking trails and concession stands throughout the park.
Pets are welcome in designated areas of Sunken Meadow State Park, too.
6. Hither Hills State Park
Hither Hills State Park is near Montauk on the eastern tip of the Salt Fork of Long Island. This state park is ideal for visitors who want to camp and experience more than just a day on the beach.
With almost 200 campsites, Hither Hills State Park offers the best Long Island beach camping. Be sure to reserve your camping spot early (up to six to eight months in advance) because the campground books up quickly!
Around the park and beach, you can enjoy nature trails, walking dunes of the Napeague Harbor, sports courts, and play areas. There are fishing opportunities for anglers, too.
There’s also a 40-acre lake, making this state park unique from the others on our list. There are also fishing opportunities for anglers.
Hither Hills State Park offers a special recreation program during the peak summer season. You can enjoy movie nights, magic shows, and a children’s theater.
Note: While the park is open all year, the beach is only open from Memorial Day to Labor Day.
7. Orient Beach State Park
Nature enthusiasts who want to escape the crowds love Orient Beach State Park. It’s a peaceful destination to appreciate various water and outdoor activities.
Orient Beach State Park offers maritime forests with prickly-pear cactus, black-jack oak trees, and red cedar. The diversity of flora has led to this being designated a National Natural Landmark. Other natural attractions include marine wildlife and a saltwater marsh.
Orient Beach State Park is filled with fun for everyone. Its gentle surf is great for fishing and water sports. You can also explore the pebble-lined shoreline, birdwatch, sunbathe, and hike the trails.
8. Coopers Beach
Southhampton’s Coopers Beach is a favorite stop during a New York vacation as it has been consistently rated as one of the top ten beaches in the United States. It’s also one of the most sandy beaches in the area and also has calm waves to enjoy water activities.
At Coopers Beach, visitors enjoy relaxing in the sunshine, playing in the water, and building sandcastles. Amenities like chair and umbrella rentals and a beachside cafe make it easy to spend the day here.
Unlike other Long Island beaches, there’s a steep parking fee to enjoy the beach at $50 a day or $450 for an annual pass. Many visitors find the fee worth it for the conveniences, fun, and scenery at Coopers Beach.
9. Gin Beach
Gin Beach is situated on the serene waters of Block Island Sound on the east side of Montauk Harbor. It’s known for being very family-friendly with gentle swimming areas, passing boats that entertain the little ones, and little to no crowds.
The natural surroundings of Gin Beach offer a peaceful vibe. It’s fun to collect rocks along the shore, play in the water, and sunbathe. Pets are welcome, too.
While there’s a fee to park, many local hotels provide parking permits for the beach.
10. Long Beach
Just a quick train ride from New York City lies Long Beach. This powdery beach fits its name with a spacious beachfront and long, wide boardwalk.
The pristine beach offers plenty of room to spread out and enjoy sand and sun. Participating in local surf lessons and playing on the beach volleyball courts are popular activities at Long Beach.
The boardwalk is often bustling with runners, dog-walkers, bikers, and strollers appreciating the beautiful views. There are also restaurants, shops, and bike rentals on the boardwalk.
You can enjoy beachfront events like movie nights during the peak beach season, too. And, if you’re up for some exploring, check out the iconic Ocean Beach Park just down from Long Beach.
11. Kirk Park Beach
Kirk Park Beach is located at the eastern end of Montauk. It’s clean and beautiful and welcomes all beachgoers. The biggest draw to Kirk Park Beach is how accessible it is, with beach wheelchairs available.
Beachgoers appreciate Kirk Beach’s family-friendly vibe and space to spread out and enjoy the beach. Amenities include restrooms, concessions, and lifeguards at Kirk Park Beach, making it easy to spend the day here.
If you can, be sure to stick around for sunset views.
12. Cupsogue Beach
In the 1930s, a rigorous storm severed a long barrier island in two, separating what is now Cupsogue Beach and the Hamptons. Cupsogue Beach is known as one of the most beautiful beaches at the east end of the barrier island between Moriches Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.
The beach is nestled in Cupsogue County Park. Its made up of long stretches of white sand and is ideal for sunbathers. It’s also a great place to swim, with lifeguards on duty. Other activities include fishing, camping, and scuba diving.
Cupsogue Beach is also uniquely home to various sea life. During certain times of the year, dolphins and humpbacks may be seen breaking the water’s surface. So, keep an eye out on your next visit!
With fun beach activities, few crowds, a concession stand, and convenient amenities, Copsogue Beach is the perfect place to spend the day. Campers can also spend the night.
13. Lido Beach
Lido Beach is a Nassau public beach that offers plenty of space to enjoy the outdoors. The beach was devised by William H. Reynolds, the same man who developed Coney Island’s Dreamland. And, not only was he able to create the world’s largest amusement park, but he made way for one of the best Long Island beaches.
Although Lido Beach isn’t one of the most popular in the area, there’s no shortage of activities to enjoy. Various watersports include swimming and bodyboarding. If you’re interested in surfing, be sure to visit Lido West.
There are also sports courts, picnic areas, and live entertainment at Lido Beach.
14. Ditch Plains Beach
Ditch Plains Beach is a large Montauk beach with cliffside views. It’s also one of the best beaches on Long Island for surfing and swimming.
Enjoy water activities with the peace of mind of lifeguards on duty. Ditch Plains Beach is the perfect spot to spend the day with various food trucks and amenities.
The beach is a quick drive from the charming town, just two miles east of Montauk Village. It’s free for beachgoers who go by bike or on foot. However, cars need an East Hampton Town beach sticker, with is well worth it for wave seekers!
15. Tobay Beach
Tobay Beach is a calm water beach in the center of Jones Beach Island on the south shore of Long Island. Choose between the Atlantic Ocean beachside or the Great South Bay on the north side, both of which offer a nice spot on the shore.
This popular destination for families offers relaxation and gentle waters. There’s also a marina, a couple of waterfront restaurants, and a spray park for children.
Fun fact: Tobay Beach was once the backdrop of a Marilyn Monroe photoshoot, illustrating how picture-perfect the area is.
Enjoy Long Island Beaches!
With so many Long Island beaches, there’s a fantastic destination for every kind of beachgoer. From sandy shorelines and gentle waters to great surf waves and long boardwalks, beaches on Long Island are some of the best.
We hope we’ve inspired you to hit one of the best beaches in New York. Enjoy!