Montauk is tucked away on the east end of the much-adored Long Island. This seaside hamlet is the ideal place to kick back and enjoy the waves away from the bustle of the city.
While Montauk is no longer one of New York’s off-the-beaten-path destinations, there are still a few beaches in Montauk Long Island that offer pockets of quiet and privacy. You can build sand castles, tan, and swim at these beaches, and they also allow you to fish and surf.
If this sounds like something you’d like to do next time you’re in the state, check out this detailed guide explaining everything you’ll need to know before you go.
Where is Montauk, Long Island?
Table of Contents
- Where is Montauk, Long Island?
- How To Get to Montauk Beaches
- Rental Car
- Parking Permits
- Beaches in Montauk Long Island
- 1. Ditch Plains Beach
- 2. Montauk Point State Park
- 3. Navy Beach
- 4. Amsterdam Beach
- 5. Gin Beach
- 6. Sunset Beach
- 7. South Edison Beach (Nick’s Beach)
- 8. Fort Pond Bay
- 9. Kirk Park Beach
- 10. Hither Hills State Park
- 11. Camp Hero Bluff at Turtle Cove
- Final Thoughts on Beaches in Montauk Long Island
Montauk’s location may be a bit confusing for first-time visitors, so I’ll break it down for you and start from the beginning. Montauk is a hamlet settlement in the Town of East Hampton. This town is in the county of Suffolk on Long Island in New York State.
How To Get to Montauk Beaches
You can take the Long Island Rail Road from Penn Station in New York City. It should take you just under four hours to reach Montauk Station.
There are a few bus options from different parts of the state. How long it will take you to reach Montauk depends on your starting point, of course. Hampton Jitney is the more budget-friendly bus service, while Hampton Ambassador and Hampton Luxury Liner allow more comfort at a higher price.
There are a few ways to get to Montauk Beach from Long Island, but I would highly recommend travelling by car. If you’re planning on seeing many sights or beaches, it will be much easier to drive there as they can be pretty spaced out from each other.
If you’re not a Montauk resident, many beaches require you to get a parking permit. The only beaches you don’t need a parking pass for are Hither Hills State Park and Kirk Park Beach. You only need to pay a $10 parking fee for these two beaches.
Beaches in Montauk Long Island
Here are some of the best Montauk Long Island beaches I recommend visiting.
1. Ditch Plains Beach
Photo by Clay LeConey on Unsplash
Ditch Plains is just east of Montauk, about a six-minute drive from the city square. It is known for its amazing swells, which attract surfers of all skill levels.
It is child-friendly with wheelchair accessibility, so it can get quite crowded at peak times. As it’s your beach day, you can rest assured that your little ones will have a safe splash in the sea. There is a lifeguard on duty during this time from May to mid-September after Labour Day.
There are concession stands and eateries nearby to refill after a long day of surfing. Try the Ditch Witch for light meals like burritos, poke bowls, and breakfast bagels.
2. Montauk Point State Park
Photo by Clay LeConey on Unsplash
While not a traditional “beach”, the Montauk State Park has a shoreline and plenty of space to frolic in the water. At about a 20-minute drive from the town centre, this state park allows for some pretty amazing views of the ocean and Montauk Point Lighthouse.
There are many activities to partake in, from hiking and skiing to fishing, paddleboarding, and windsurfing. And, the best part is that you can bring two pets with you to enjoy the outdoors with you.
A few picnic tables and concessions are scattered across the park, so don’t forget to pack a picnic basket and blanket for your day out.
Note: It is small game hunting season here from November to December, so keep your pets leashed.
Photo by Laura Peruchi on Unsplash
Navy Beach is a peculiar name for a beach, but it has nothing to do with the deep blue shade. It is due to its colourful history and ties to the Navy’s use of the beach in World War II.
This beach is scattered with beautiful pebbles of different shades of brown and grey. It makes it the ideal place for just simply enjoying the view. Another great place to enjoy the views is the Navy Beach Restaurant, which serves fresh al fresco seafood and burgers right on the shore.
4. Amsterdam Beach
Photo by Alex Kolundzija on Unsplash
Just an 11-min drive from the town centre and a few miles from “Eothen”, the former estate of artist Andy Warhol is where you’ll find this golden beach.
It is pretty remote, which means it is basically unspoilt and perfect for hikers ready to explore. If this sounds like your cup of tea, you can take the 50-minute round-trip hike through the wooded and sandy terrain.
Along with your sunscreen, don’t forget to bring some bug repellent as you’ll walk through a tunnel of holly, tupelos, and oak trees before reaching the shoreline.
5. Gin Beach
Image by Tommy Kwak on Unsplash
This beach is just on the edge of Lake Montauk as it spills into the Atlantic Ocean. While not too far away, the drive takes you all around Lake Montauk to the County Park on the other side of town.
However, its calm waters and lifeguards make it a lovely and safe family destination. There are also long piers ideal for anglers to cast a line. What sets this beach apart from the others is an RV park just a few feet away where visitors can camp for a more extended stay.
The beach is well facilitated, with restrooms, concessions, and outdoor showers to wash off the sand from your feet. If you’re hungry, you can visit Inlet Seafood, less than a stone’s throw away, which serves the freshest seafood you can get from a beach restaurant.
6. Sunset Beach
Image by booking.com
Many people may not know about this beach, but you can find Sunset Beach just at the entrance of Montauk Harbor. It is across the stream from Gin Beach on the Block Island Sound.
This beach is in an ideal location as it’s near many activities besides the waves. Take a Viking Ferry to Block Island or grab something to eat at Gosman’s Dock. If you’re not ready for your trip here to end, stay at Sunset Beach Montauk for views of the backyard waves from your balcony.
7. South Edison Beach (Nick’s Beach)
Image by Nick’s on the Beach on Facebook
This beach at the end of South Edison Street has been dubbed Nick’s Beach by locals. This is because of a restaurant and nightclub called ‘Nick’s on the Beach’. And while the hotspot has since closed down, the name and fun on the beach persist.
While the nightlife may not be as lively, you can still get your heart pumping through the waves. You can swim and surf here as long there is a lifeguard on duty, usually between 9 am – 5 pm.
Since the beloved restaurant closed, nearby eateries have had time to shine. Try South Edison, MTK Lobster House, for delicious seafood dishes less than a 10-minute walk away. Another worthy restaurant is Shagwong Tavern which is over a century old and serves delicious cocktails and ice-cold beers.
8. Fort Pond Bay
Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash
Fort Pond Bay is another beach that many may not know about yet. It is the newest town beach, just a 10-minute walk away from Navy Beach. This makes it the ideal place to drift to when Navy gets too crowded.
The beach is full of pebbles, but still a great place to take the kids for splashes in the water and kayak or short boating trips. The bay also has a giant open grass clearing and easy access to Hither Woods Preserve for hikes.
9. Kirk Park Beach
Photo by Tommy Kwak on Unsplash
Kirk Park is one of the few beaches in Montauk that doesn’t need a parking permit. Instead, it’s first come, first served for a $35 parking spot here. The beach is very popular, so I’d suggest you come as early as possible.
The white sand beach is the closest to the town centre, which is the ideal spot to come to if you’re only in town for a few days. There are also many walkable restaurants, restrooms, and stores nearby.
10. Hither Hills State Park
Photo by Tommy Kwak on Unsplash
This state park is slightly outside of Montauk but still only an 8-minute drive away. Because this family-friendly beach is in a state park, it has a host of activities for young and old. These include fishing, picnics, hiking, biking, and skiing in winter.
The fact that this beach is so close to the city makes it a great place to visit for a weekend getaway. The area is also a highly sought-after camping ground, so beach and nature lovers can make the most of their stay here.
Because of this, camping grounds are usually booked well ahead of time, but that doesn’t mean you don’t get to have your own seaside stay. Why not stay at Gurney’s Montauk Resort & Seawater Spa to really get your relaxation in?
11. Camp Hero Bluff at Turtle Cove
Image by Jahongir Ismoilov on Unsplash
Camp Hero State Park covers a big stretch of land spanning over 415 acres. Its terrain is diverse and weaves through woodland, wetlands, and to white sand shorelands.
Like its landscape, you‘ll also find a diverse crowd of visitors as well. These are frequented by surfers who claim these swells are the best in Montauk, while adventurers love the Camp Hero Trail Heads. You’ll also find fishermen here 24 hours a day as the undisturbed environment is great for casting lines no matter the time of day.
Final Thoughts on Beaches in Montauk Long Island
It is clear to see that Montauk has no lack of beaches around this beautiful hamlet. It has a shore for every kind of beach lover, whether you’re an adventurer or more of a laze-in-the-sun beachgoer.
I covered all of the costs involved in the writing of this post on beaches in Montauk Long Island. However, this post includes affiliate links. That means if you click through and end up making a purchase I will receive a small commission. I wanted to make sure you were aware of this.