Sandy Hook Unit

1 Bay Ave.
Highlands, NJ 07732- Map It
(732) 872-5970

AAA Editor Notes

Sandy Hook Unit is entered by bridge from SR 36 at Highlands, N.J. The barrier beach peninsula extends into the entrance of Lower New York Harbor. Recreational activities include bird-watching (approximately 340 bird species migrate through Sandy Hook during spring and fall), hiking, kite-boarding, swimming and windsurfing. Bicyclists, inline skaters and pedestrians are afforded a 5-mile multipurpose trail. The 1764 Sandy Hook Lighthouse is reputedly the oldest working light tower in the nation. During the American Revolution the site was occupied by British Loyalists. Today the keeper's quarters houses exhibits about New Jersey's lighthouses and maritime, military, and natural history. The History House, an 1898 former lieutenant's home, is furnished with period pieces. A visitor center is housed in a former U.S. Life-Saving Service station at Spermaceti Cove which offers exhibits, programs and park information. Also housing displays is Fort Hancock, established in 1895. It is still largely intact, as are gun emplacements that defended the harbor during the Spanish-American War and World Wars I and II. Pets on leash are allowed only in designated areas mid-September through mid-March. Guided tours are available. Pets on leash are allowed. Picnicking is permitted. Food is available.
Free. Under 48 inches tall are not permitted to climb the lighthouse tower. Parking: Beach Center parking $15 daily, Memorial Day weekend-Labor Day.
Hours: Sandy Hook Unit daily 5 a.m.-10 p.m., Apr.-Oct.; 5 a.m.-8 p.m., rest of year. Visitor Center at Spermaceti Cove and at Lighthouse Keepers Quarters daily 9-5. Guided lighthouse tours are given daily 1-4:30; children under 48 inches are not permitted. History House Sat.-Sun. 1-5. Rangers are available daily 24 hours. Closed Jan. 1, Thanksgiving and Christmas.