Christmas is truly a magical time of the year at the Jersey Shore. Historic homes and hotels sparkle with decorations, and Santa Claus makes an appearance at a variety of events. From parades and parties to tree lighting ceremonies, there are plenty of fun ways to celebrate a Jersey Shore Christmas! Here are just a few of our favorites.
Find out how you can plan the ultimate Jersey Shore Christmas vacation when you download our free Vacation Guide! It’s full of information on the best things to do and see this holiday season.
How to Experience a Jersey Shore Christmas
1. Victorian Inn & House Tour | Ocean Grove
The town of Ocean Grove is known for its vintage architecture and rich history. In December, visitors are invited to step back in time during a special two-day event known as the Victorian Inn & House Tour. These walking tours take guests through homes, inns, and hotels adorned in beautiful holiday lights. Enjoy sipping warm beverages and munching on home-baked goodies as you admire the decorations.
In addition to guided tours, Ocean Grove hosts a variety of free events. We love the Christmas display inside the Historical Society Museum, the live nativity in the Great Auditorium, and the Christmas tree lighting with carolers from the Great Auditorium Choir. Tickets for the Victorian Inn & House Tour may be purchased at the Chamber of Commerce office.
2. Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony | Asbury Park
Held each year in November, the Asbury Park Boardwalk tree lighting ceremony is a beloved Jersey Shore tradition. During the ceremony, staff members light a spectacular three-story tree inside the Convention Hall. Live musical performances round out the event. Be sure to take a photo with Santa!
3. Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony | Bradley Beach
Bradley Beach also hosts a fantastic tree lighting ceremony that’s just steps from our inn. Simply walk over to Riley Park and enjoy wagon rides, refreshments, entertainment, and a visit from Santa.
4. Christmas Light Show | Belmar
The Christmas Light Show in Belmar is a must-see during your Jersey Shore Christmas vacation! This impressive, family-friendly display includes lighting, fog, and pyrotechnics, all synchronized to powerful concert-quality sound. Visitors should arrive 40 minutes prior to the show to allow time to park and walk to the venue. (Don’t forget to dress warm and bring a flashlight!) Free food and drinks are available and Santa usually makes an appearance.
5. Jenkinson’s Aquarium Sea of Lights | Point Pleasant
Looking for something different to do this Christmas? Check out the Sea of Lights Holiday Festival at Jenkinson’s Aquarium. You’ll see the aquarium done up with hundreds festive lights and decorations! Arts and crafts, face painting, and a scuba diving Santa provide hours of fun for visitors of all ages. Visit the aquarium website for details.
Book Your Stay at the Inns of Ocean Grove
If you want to experience a Jersey Shore Christmas this year, book your stay at the Inns of Ocean Grove! Our century-old bed and breakfast features beautiful accommodations and top-notch amenities to make you feel at home. Plus, we offer a hot, delicious breakfast each morning of your stay! Feel free to search our website to see what’s available, then book online or give us a call to make your reservations. We look forward to spending the holidays with you!
For more information on upcoming events at the Jersey Shore, check out our events page.