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Things to Do in Lavallette, New Jersey

by Cristina Lombardi
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Lavallette is a charming, family-friendly beach town that has it all. Shopping, dining at local restaurants, and spending a day at its accompanying beach are just one of the many things to do in this beloved beach town at the Jersey Shore. Read on for things to do if heading or planning a trip to Lavallette, New Jersey. 

lavallette beach

History + Facts


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Established in 1887, Lavallette is a borough in Ocean County, located on the Barnegat Peninsula. Although mainly a summer community, with a population of about 2,000 residents, it is definitely a destination that is worth visiting. Lavallette is only one square mile, but this charming seaside community is still jam-packed with activities for all ages. It’s also conveniently located tucked between two other popular shore towns, Point Pleasant Beach and Seaside Heights.

Lavallette was named after Elie A. F. La Vallette, one of the first rear admirals appointed in the United States Navy when President Abraham Lincoln created the rank in 1862. He was also the father of Albert T. Lavallette, co-founder of the borough.

Read More: This Red Bank Couple Got Married at Cross + Orange in Asbury Park

Unfortunately, Hurricane Sandy hit Lavallette and the entire peninsula very hard in 2012  and many establishments were destroyed. It’s taken years to fully recover, but the area has bounced back — we’re so happy that it did.

Where to Stay

Beautiful vacation homes are available to rent anywhere from a week to the entire summer. There are many realtors in the area to help you find your perfect summer oasis, but be sure to look in advance, as rentals can be booked up to a year in advance. VRBO has been growing in popularity for renting in this area. There are also different local real estate companies to check out, like Lavallette Beach House Summer RentalsOcean Beach Sales + RentalsSchlosser Real Estate, and more. You can also look in The Local Girl real estate directory here.

There are also a few newly renovated motels such as Starlight Motel & Luxury SuitesLamplight MotelTradewinds Motor Lodge, which usually have availability for shorter trips and weekend stays.

What to Do

Lavallette Beach


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Windswept sand dunes separate magnificent beachfront houses from the shimmering white sand and sparkling sea. Whether you’re looking to relax and lay low or have a more active day, there are always people enjoying a little bit of everything. From surfers to skimboarders, to people playing beach volleyball, to children building sand castles, and of course, to readers and loungers, there are always people soaking up the sun.

Lavallette Bay


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Just a few blocks west of the beach lies the bay, with a sand ‘beach’ that is perfect for little ones.  This part of town is a little quieter and more serene and offers a few long docks for fishing and crabbing. You will also find vacationers kayaking, boating, jet skiing, and paddleboarding on the calm water. West Point Island is also worth exploring, where you’ll discover beautiful waterfront mansions, including one that was home to actor Joe Pesci for many years. (Fun fact: it recently sold for its $6.5 million asking price — more than seven times what he paid for it!)

*The beach and bay are protected by lifeguards from 10AM- 5PM on weekdays and until 6PM on holidays and weekends — and both require a beach badge for entry. 

Lavallette Boardwalk


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The Lavallette Boardwalk is an awesome way to get those steps in. Not to be confused with your typical shore boardwalk with arcade games, the Lavallette boardwalk is a mile-long stretch of boards that acts as an entryway to the beach. At any time of the day, there are runners, walkers, and bikers alike, exercising while admiring the beautiful beachfront houses. The town also hosts an annual Breast Cancer Walk on the boardwalk on the first Saturday of August. It raises money and awareness through The Tone Foundation and the American Cancer Society.


A beach trip is never complete without a little shopping, and there are so many great options in the center of town. Here are some of our favorites:

B&B Department Store | 709 Grand Central Avenue

B&B has lots of clothing, bathing suits, and any other beach apparel you may need.

Beach Authority | 506 Grand Central Avenue

This shop calls itself the ‘one-stop shop’ for all things you may need at the Jersey Shore. It sells clothes, and supplies for the beach, and even has bike rentals.

The Beach Home | 1904 Grand Central Avenue


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This is the spot for beachy home decor (no surprise, given the name).

Ben Franklin | 1205 Grand Central Avenue

This shop has been family-owned since 1948. It’s a 5 & 10 store with any kind of beach items you may need.

See More: Jersey Shore Boutique Hotels to Stay When DTS

Bow & Arrow Boutique | 701 Grand Central Avenue


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This boutique has clothing, accessories, home goods, shoes, and more.

House of Lucky | 502 Grand Central Avenue


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House of Lucky is an adorable shop full of pastels + summer-inspired accessories, clothes, shoes, and more.

Island Gypsy | 504 Grand Central Avenue


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Island Gypsy is another great spot to shop for clothes — it also has jewelry, accessories, and candles.

Martin’s Casuals | 703 Grand Central Avenue

Martin’s has been open for over 50 years and prides itself on providing a unique shopping experience. It sells clothes for both men and women, along with swimwear, shoes, and other fun accessories.

My Sister’s Jewelry Box | 905 Grand Central Avenue

This shop has such a fun concept — that the best place to get new items is in your sister’s closet. As such, it sells cute + chic jewelry items.

Salted Gems | 906 Unit B Grand Central Avenue

Salted Gems sells sterling silver jewelry — and everything in the shop is inspired by the coastal landscape.

Shaded Vision | 605 Grand Central Avenue # C

As the name suggests, this is the place to go for sunglasses + other eyewear needs.

More Town Activities

In addition, fitness classes such as yoga on the beach are available, courtesy of This is Yoga NJ studio in Seaside Park. Paddleboarding, kayaking, surfing school, tennis, or pickleball on the courts by the bay are also awesome activities to try — many of which are available for rent. Playing mini-golf, going fishing, crabbing, jet skiing, or boating are also awesome things to do. Additionally, the town also hosts family-friendly events such as a summer concert series in the Lavallette gazebo which are held on Sunday nights at 7PM, starting on Independence Day and continuing every Sunday (weather permitting) through Labor Day. There are also weekly “Kites and Sand Castle” activities on the beach.

Where to Eat

From classic breakfast dishes to Italian sandwiches, to fresh seafood and more, Lavallette is bursting with delicious options for any craving.

Colonial Bakery | 1906A Grand Central Avenue (Route 35 North) + 3091 NJ-35


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Say hello to the freshest, most indulgent, hand-made baked goods you could ever dream of. Established in 1998, Colonial Bakery is the go-to spot in town for bagels, crumb buns, cookies, donuts, cupcakes, and bread galore. Open seasonally from May to September, this family-run bakery prides itself on using only the finest quality ingredients and it shows. A must try: the Bavarian crumb squares, aka the classic crumb cake stuffed with in-house-made Bavarian cream.

Megs Grill | 1403 Grand Central Avenue


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Dining at Meg’s Grill is a must for visitors. This casual eatery is a local favorite that remains open year-round. Choose from a variety of breakfast classics such as pancakes, eggs, omelets, and breakfast sandwiches or come for lunch and enjoy signature salads, wraps, burgers, cheesesteaks, and daily specials. You may even meet Meg herself, the mastermind and chef behind this delicious eatery.

Other great options for coffee, breakfast, and lunch include Lava Java, Sand Dollar Pancake House, Sunset Keys Cafe & Market, Playa Bowls, and Toast. 

Lenny’s Pizza & Italian Grill | 406 Grand Central Avenue

For authentic Italian cuisine, there’s Lenny’s — a longtime family-run restaurant with consistently delicious meals. On its large menu, you can choose from many different types of cheesy pizza, loaded sandwiches, savory pasta, salads, and Italian classics. Popular for take-out and dining in, the space is centrally located in town. Lenny’s is open all year round and has a delicious catering menu as well.

Other great options for dinner include Little Mias, The Oven, or Castaway’s.

Crab’s Claw Inn | 601 Grand Central Avenue

In the heart of Lavallette, you will find a very popular restaurant loved by locals and visitors alike. With a ton of outdoor seating, including happy hour specials and live indoor music, Crab’s Claw is the place to go for drinks, shareable apps, and an extensive seafood list. The atmosphere is fun and casual. Though it’s known for its crab cakes, coconut shrimp, and crispy buffalo calamari, it’s the food and the fun, date-night vibe that ultimately attracts visitors. While waiting to be seated, you can also enjoy some live outdoor music and a drink at the outdoor bar.

Other great choices for fresh seafood include The Lobster Deck, Ohana Grill, Channel Marker Cafe, or Hoshino Asian Bistro.

Iceberg Ice Cream | 403 Grand Central Avenue


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When you need an indulgent, refreshing treat, stop by one of the best homemade ice cream shops on the peninsula. Open since 1977, Iceberg has 44 different soft serve flavors, unique hard ice cream flavors made fresh daily, endless toppings to choose from — as well as sundaes galore. It also offers dairy-free, gluten-free, fat-free, and no added sugar options. One of our favorites is its infamous ‘cookie monster’ flavor — vanilla ice cream with sweet cream. It’s dyed blue and has chunks of oreo mixed in. Yum.

You can also satisfy your sweet tooth at The Parlor, Khors, or the Music Man Singing Ice Cream Shoppe, where you may be asked to sing for your ice cream!

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