Connecticut offers its share of shoreline fun in the sun and we list loads of beaches in our CT Beach & Water Fun Guide, but one of our family favorites, Ocean Beach Park is tucked away in the southeastern corner of the state, in New London, and has something for everyone! For more beachy summer fun check out our CT Summer Fun Guide.
Ocean Beach is enormous! The first thing you can't help noticing is the spectacular, sugar sand beach and boardwalk. A half mile of space to build sand castles, collect sea shells and soak up the sun. Lifeguards are on duty and the surf from Long Island sound stays relatively calm. And, the views....the views of Ledge Light, Fisher Island, New York, and, on a clear day, you can see straight to Montauk!
Photo by mcallister0147 via Instagram
If you can peel yourself away from the surf and sand, venture up the boardwalk a bit and grab a bite to eat at the snack bar. There's plenty of options of yummy food to choose from, and lots of seating inside out of the sun, or out on the patio under an umbrella. Don't skip the ice cream for dessert, and Boardwalk creamery serves up soft serve to top off your meal.
Just past the snack bar, the kids can play some skeeball and video games in the arcade. Walk a little farther up the boardwalk, past the arcade, and try your hand at the 18 hole miniature golf course. Once you've conquered the games, head in the other direction on the boardwalk, and the kiddos can play in the splash pad (included with admission!) or head over to the huge, nautical themed playground. Between the playground and splash pad, for anyone who prefers a pool over the beach, can take a dip in the olympic size swimming pool, for a small, extra fee.
As if all that weren't enough, Ocean Beach has rides, too! A carousel, small ferris wheel, the scrambler, bumper boats and a huge waterslide as well.
Photo by mg.stevens via Instagram
On Monday nights, during the summer, Ocean Beach hosts a cruise night. Parking after 4pm is free, kids ride bracelets are half price, classic cars are on display and play mini golf for a reduced rate, also!
All told, there's enough to do at Ocean Beach park to fill an entire day, if not two!
If you work up an appetite as you're leaving the beach, head out to Captain Scott's Lobster Dock for fresh seafood right from the fisherman who net the daily catch. Picnic outside, harbor side, with scallops, clams, and more. After dinner, shop the fresh seafood market for tomorrow's meal!
Ocean Beach Park
98 Neptune Avenue, New London, CT 06320 860.447.3031
Originally published 8/14/14.
Cover photo by deannajoy81 via Instagram