practicallyserious Travel Blog: Hazlet, N.J.
Known for its “Jersey Strong” charm and convenient access to many popular Jersey Shore destinations and attractions, Hazlet is a little town with a lot to offer. Be sure to make it a two-day visit; don’t worry, you still won’t run out of things to do. For starters you can catch a big-name show at the nearby PNC Bank Arts Center—Springsteen and Dylan and John Tesh play there all the time—or learn about the area’s rich and colorful history by paying a visit to the Keyport Fire Museum Association and the Matawan Historical Society. And when you’re done cramming your brain with colonial firefighter history, throw on a bathing suit and take a short five-minute drive to Keansburg Amusement Park and its neighbor, Runaway Rapids. That’s when the real Hazlet fun begins.
With three large arcades, delicious food, and plenty of rides and games for every member of the family, Keansburg Amusement Park has it all. The park has never charged an entry fee; just pay for the games and rides that appeal to you. When you’re done raising your heart rate on the many death-defying rollercoasters, hop across the street and spend some time zipping down one of the 18 unique water slides of Runaway Rapids. They come in all shapes and sizes.
Time for some dinner. If you happen to be a fan of authentic Italian cuisine—and some of the best “New York Style” pizza on the planet—then you’ve come to the right town. Try the super-popular Ray’s Real Pizza on Route 35, known for its welcoming atmosphere and outstanding menu of real-deal Italian dishes. Then again, Hazlet’s pretty close to the shore; you might be in the mood for some fresh, delicious seafood. Try Sea Breeze Fish Market, Inc. (also on Route 35). This family-owned business has been around for ten years and offers a wide variety of premium quality shellfish, shrimp, fin fish, and plenty more.
All of that eating’s going to make you drowsy. Sleep off your fun-filled day—so you’re ready for round two—with an unforgettable night in the Holiday Inn Hazlet Hotel. Conveniently located just three miles from the beach, less than 15 minute from PNC Bank Arts Center, and minutes from the popular Monmouth Mall, Hazlet Hotel has a friendly staff and spacious, comfortable, luxurious rooms. You’ll feel like a king (even if you’re a girl). So get some quality sleep. Tomorrow you’ll want to hit the ground running. There’s always plenty to do in Hazlet.