Avalon: 'Cooler by the Mile' But Longer than Seven. Maritime Forest. Pier has Eyes on You

Updated: Aug 19, 2021

With wide, packed firm beaches good for jogging, a nature preserve in the middle of the island and the highest median home price on the Shore, Avalon lives up to its mythical name associated with the myth of King Arthur.

Looking toward Townsends Inlet and Sea Isle City

Unless you're staying at the northern end of the island, you may know the pleasure of standing on the jetty gazing out at the Townsend Inlet toward Sea Isle City. Along with the dunes in the middle island, this area stands out for anyone visiting Avalon.

The eastern edge of the Jetty at the ocean.

(From the vantage point of the beachfront or boardwalk, this is a breezy overview of what you see, where to park and beach access, plus a bit or history and the latest happenings. See map below.)

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Remarkable maritime forest at the heart of the beach

Drive along Dune Road in Avalon and you won't see a dune. Yet, from 32nd and 58th Streets, the eastern side of Dune is blanketed by a heavy maritime forest. Remarkably, a swath of the oceanfront has been preserved as a maritime forest. There are cedar, holly and wild cherry trees along with bayberry and sumac bushes that lead to rolling dunes,

From the beach, the maritime forest creates a remarkable beachfront in the middle of this densely populated island where houses seem far, far from the beach, and there are only a few people staking a place to sun on the beach.

"Cooler by the Mile" but longer than seven miles

The town's slogan of "Cooler by the Mile" refers to the fact that the so-called Seven Mile Island juts out into the Atlantic Ocean a miler further on the northern end than it does on the southern end. Or it refers to the fact that the island juts out a mile farther into the ocean than other barrier islands. It's hard to verify or disapprove either fact.

However, it's clear from walking the beach that the so-called Seven Mile Island is definitely longer than seven miles. Having walked the Stone Harbor Point from north to south and then back, I can state firmly that the island extends at least one additional mile beyond where the road ends at 122th Street. It's been more than 100 years since the original developer, the Seven Mile Company, bought the island, so you can imagine that getting people to start calling it the Eight Mile Island isn't going to happen anytime soon.

Photo by Eileen Remaly Skultety

Avalon Fishing Pier where you're being watched

The Avalon Fishing Club has owned the Avalon Fishing Pier since 1933. The pier is 900-feet long, having been extended by 200 feet in 2016 to reach out farther into the ocean to allow year-round fishing. Apparently, South Jersey beaches have been adding sand along the beachfront because the Anglers Club of Absecon Island pier in Margate recently underwent a similar expansion for the same reason.