"The thin stretch of barrier beach that is Island Beach State Park is, perhaps, the prettiest part of the entire New Jersey Shore. It is made up of miles of unspoiled sandy beaches; delicate, shifting sand dunes; thickets; marshes; and a wildlife sanctuary, home to numerous species of birds including the once-endangered osprey.
Island Beach State Park, like Sandy Hook to the north, is located on the Atlantic Flyway, so you'll almost spot plenty of birds along the tour, especially in fall. If you decide to tour Island Beach in summer or early fall, bring your bathing suit. There are a number of beach-access paths along the tour. Feel free to break up your ride with a refreshing ocean dip. Most swimming areas have showers and changing areas, so you won't have to ride in a wet swimsuit. Things to see: Aeolium (Island Beach Nature Center), barrier-beach landscape, wildlife sanctuary, Barnegat Lighthouse ("Old Barney"), Barnegat Inlet."