Check Out These Seven Fire Island Gems

Summer is on the rise! Check out these 7 things to do on your next trip to Fire Island

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Sailor’s Haven

Known as “The Jewel in the Crown” of the Fire Island National Seashore, Sailor’s Haven is a beautiful bay on the island that is home to a large beach, boat marina, and the famous Sunken Forest. The tranquil coastal area is located near the center of the island and accessible by the Sayville Ferry, private boat, or foot, and features a visitors center, convenience shop that sells snacks and gifts, and a 45-slip public marina with electricity. The beach is patrolled by lifeguards in summer and has a bathhouse with showers, restrooms, picnic tables, and grills. While the Sunken Forest is the main attraction of Sailor's Haven, the thriving gay resort town of Cherry Grove is a mile walk to the east and offers a few good restaurants, bars and gift shops.


Village of Ocean Beach 

The Village of Ocean Beach is a coastal town on Fire Island that features beautiful natural scenery, lovely beaches, and a warm and welcoming community. The charming seaside village has a unique character with treasure-laden shops, homegrown galleries, and varied restaurants, with a laid-back, casual atmosphere that’s perfect for some post-beach strolling and eating. Bordered by the bay and ocean, the town is car free, and walking and cycling is the local way to explore the shops, galleries, restaurants, ice cream parlors, and beaches. A broad quay offers the perfect spot to catch the breathtaking sunsets, weekly open-air concerts, and craft fairs that take place at various venues throughout the summer. Water sport lovers can enjoy an abundance of options as well as swimming, fishing, surfing, boating, and windsurfing being just a few of the activities that can be enjoyed, while a wealth of restaurants, cafés, and bars cater to every taste.


Fire Island Lighthouse 

The Fire Island Lighthouse is a well-known landmark on the western end of Fire Island in the Great South Bay. Located within the Fire Island National Seashore and adjacent to the Robert Moses State Park, the lighthouse was originally built in 1826 and later replaced by a taller structure in 1858. It then served continuously as a navigating beacon until 1974 when it was replaced by a small flash tube placed at the top of the Robert Moses water tower. The lighthouse can be reached by a short walk from the Robert Moses State Park and is open to the public – visitors can enjoy tower tours for a small fee.


Sunken Forest 

Fire Island's Sunken Forest is a unique Maritime Holly Forest situated in Sailor’s Haven on Fire Island. Named for its unusual location, the Sunken Forest is situated in the lee of the sand dunes that run along the shoreline, giving it the appearance of being below sea level. Visitors can explore the woods, which are home to a wide of variety of plant and animal life, from May to October on self-guided walks or daily ranger-guided tours.


CJ’s Restaurant and Bar 

Casual, comfortable, and friendly, CJ’s is the epitome of a beachside café where you can enjoy delicious food, island inspired cocktails (including Fire Island’s Famous Rocket Fuel), and stunning ocean views. Featuring nautical vibes, CJ’s boasts a tantalizing menu of seafood and other delights, including burgers, wraps, and quesadillas. Start with crispy fried calamari or steamed mussels followed by a lobster roll, handmade fishcakes, or marinated steak served with fries and salad. The well-stocked bar serves a variety of cocktails – don’t miss trying the Rocket Fuel for which the café is famous – as well as wines by the glass, craft beers, and other spirits.


Smith Point County Park

Smith Point County Park is a beautiful beachfront park located on the east end of Fire Island that offers a variety of outdoor activities, attractions, and seasonal events. Situated within the boundaries of Fire Island National Seashore, it is the county's largest oceanfront park and a haven for sportsmen, surfers, and ocean lovers. The park’s pristine white sandy beaches, rolling Atlantic surf, and great camping and picnic areas make it a popular location with locals (and visitors), who come to enjoy swimming, surfing, fishing, camping, picnicking, and huge playground for the kiddos. 


Surf’s Out 

Situated on the site of what was originally The Out Restaurant, Surf’s Out continues the tradition of serving freshly cooked dish and offers an exciting bar menu in the perfect location. Casual and relaxed, Surf’s Out features indoor and outdoor seating for lunch and dinner, a beautiful bar, and the island’s best outdoor courtyard, which is often used for hosting live music, DJ’s, and private parties. While the evenings boast a trendy scene, the restaurant caters to families during the day, with an Italian menu that has specials for kids. The menu offers delicious seafood and Italian dishes such as Maryland Crab Cakes, Lobster Risotto, Rib-Eye Steak, and a classic Pollo Parmigiana. Fresh fish ranges from yellowfin tuna, red snapper, and salmon, and a special sushi-style menu features creative takes on seafood plates. A kid’s menu is offered too!