It’s here! The time of year we all have been waiting for. Time to pack up the family and get your toes in the sand. Long Island is home to some of the most beautiful beaches anywhere. We’re privileged to be surrounded by them and have the opportunity to go both to the North Shore and South Shore as well as the East End. Our local expert provides an East End beach round up that covers the eastern parts of Suffolk County starting with Smith Point County Park.
While not considered an “East End” beach, this great beach is just far enough for some day trippers to feel they went east without the Hampton’s traffic. It’s Suffolk County’s largest oceanfront park with swimming, fishing, camping, a concession stand “The Beach Hut,” an on-sand playground, nature walking trails, showers and special events. We particularly love the live bands on weekends while sitting and enjoying some snacks at one of the many tables. Smith Point has some nice walking trails and is known for its camping facilities. Cost: $15 entrance fee or reduced price for Suffolk residents with purchase of the green key pass.
Located on the still waters of the Great Peconic Bay, Meschuett can be a great place to bring the tubes or let the kids swim with no waves in site. It’s got that relaxed family vibe without many rowdy teens. While it can be a very small strip of sand, it’s wide enough to spread out. There’s a playground and another Beach Hut for good beach food and treats. Walk to the left and take a walk on the jetty to enjoy the expansive views.
Head over the Ponquogue Bridge to check out amazing views and spend some time on the lovely beach savoring the Hamptons vibe. Cost: $20 per day parking permit.
Cuspogue is quite possibly my favorite beach to spend a day at. Located at the end of Dune Road in Westhampton and surrounded by the ocean, the inlet, and the bay, the ride alone is enjoyable. But once you get there and pick a spot along the shore with the gorgeous beach houses in site and the endless blue sky, you may not want to leave. For some reason, Cupsogue has a very vacation-y feel and you’ll definitely want to grab dinner at the Beach Hut and stay until sunset. Cost: Daily parking fee $15 or discount with green key.
Hither Hills State Park
Hither Hills State Park is four miles west of the village, right on the ocean. Non campers pay $10 to park. There’s a playground, picnic area, and even a general store for any supplies forgotten.
South Edison Beach
In the heart of town and within walking distance of stores, this is a great beach to spend some time at after meandering the stores or grabbing lunch in the village. There’s no public parking so you may have to walk a bit to get there but once you do, it’s like grabbing a piece of vacation right in your own backyard.
The only two beaches in East Hampton that don’t require a permit are Main Beach and Two Mile Hollow Beach. Both sell daily parking passes at $25 each with a limited number of them sold on weekends and Holidays.
Orient Beach State Park
This beach is a pretty North Shore beach with many play structures for kids, a nice path to meander on and 45,000 feet of shore front acreage on Gardiner’s Bay. Cost: $10 per day parking fee. There are plenty of birds out there, picnic areas and great views of passing boats.
Southold Town Beach
Cost to visit this beautiful beach is $25 daily for non residents. Lifeguards are present in season.
By Debra Ferrie