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  • Writer's pictureMike Cassidy

Four Favorite Ocean County Beaches for Family Beach Photos

Updated: Apr 5

a family walking on the beach at sunset

Each summer thousands of families visit the Jersey Shore. The days are long. The sun is warm. ...And then there's the boardwalk food. Not only is Ocean County a great place for a summer vacation, but it's beaches make for a great backdrop for your family photos.

The resurgence of family photography over the past few years is terrific. --And what better place to use as the setting for your family photos than the beach. I'm very lucky that during the summer I get to spend a few weeks meeting and photographing families from literally all parts of the US that are visiting the area.

One question I am often asked by families is what beach should be used for photos. Well, this may come down to a bit of preference, but after photographing many families on many beaches in the area, there are definitely a few spots that lend themselves to great family beach photos.

I am typically working with families visiting the Seaside Park area, but my list below of favorite beaches is not exclusively limited to that town.

Brighton Ave, Seaside Park, NJ

After 7PM, the beach crowds leave, and the beach becomes a bit quieter. The beaches in this part of Seaside Park are quite expansive, and there is plenty of space so you can find a spot where no one will be wandering through the background of your photos.

The one danger here is kites. Kites? Yes, kites! This part of Seaside Park often is a place where lots (and I mean lots!) of kite flyers meet and stay active till well after sunset.

You need to be a bit lucky, but if you have a quiet night and have pleasant weather, its an excellent spot for beach photos.

9th Ave, Seaside Park, NJ

My personal favorite "go to" location for family beach photos . As you travel further south in Seaside Park, there is more serenity to be found on the beach. After 7PM, there are relatively few people around, with plenty of open beach space for your group. The bonus is not have people cluttering the background your photos.

Occasionally, there are a few beach walkers, but this is a great spot to meet for family beach photos, especially for those who would like shots of their family walking along the surf.

Washington Ave, Lavallette, NJ

Lavallette is another good choice for your family beach photos. Lavallette is a quieter area, with the beach goers there being mainly people renting in the neighborhood. After 6PM, the sunbathers are mostly gone, and the beaches are relatively clear.

Generally, there isn't any issue finding a spot where your group will be free of others photo bombing your background. This beach has a more residential vibe-- if that even means anything. Additionally, often there is a good prop available, like a rescue boat, that can be put to good use.

Island Beach State Park

For the true "back to nature" beach photo enthusiast, we have Island Beach State Park. When you are planning on taking photos in IBSP there is definitely a bit of work involved when it comes to reaching your final beach destination. There can often be quite a walk from your parking location to the beach, but for those who want the best in unadulterated natural beaches, this is the spot for your photos.

Having people in your background is rarely an issue here, and the geography often lends to photos in the areas surrounding the beach, as well.

One note: IBSP may not be the best place if your group contains elderly folks, or a person who may have difficulty walking. As mentioned, getting to a beach can mean trekking through hundreds of feet of sand and underbrush and may not be suitable for everyone.

By no means are these the only beaches you should consider, but this is merely a list of some of my favorites. If you would like information about scheduling your family beach session with me, please click here, or on the Contact menu above.

Have a terrific summer!

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