Updated: Sep 9, 2021
After walking miles of beaches to the north without a solid walkway to view the ocean, it's a welcome respite to find a long boardwalk in Lavallette. For a little over a mile, Lavallette features a non-commercial boardwalk that's a popular place for walkers and joggers. It's nestled between the dunes and houses on the oceanfront.
(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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More active town
Just a block from the ocean, there's much more commercial activity than the Borough's quieter, residentially focused neighborhoods. Conveniences like the old-time Ben Franklin and B&B department stores, gas stations, a pharmacy and take-out restaurants line Route 35.
On the bay side, the town focuses lots of energy with two public beaches and the Centennial Gazebo and Gardens where they offer free movie nights throughout the summer.
Like the beaches north of the Borough at the Brick Beaches, Bay Head and Mantoloking, the dunes were fortified after Superstorm Sandy.
If Lavallette sounds vaguely French that's because it was named after Elie A. F. La Vallette, a rear admiral for the US Navy during the Civil War. Although he was born in the United States, he kept his French family name, La Vallette, but eventually anglicized it to Lavallette. His son, Albert T. Lavallette, was one of the co-founders of the borough after it seceded from Toms River Township.
Elie La Vallette's portrait and a model of the USS LaVallette, one of two Navy destroyers named in the rear admiral’s honor, are featured in the main lobby of the Lavallette Borough Hall.
Tips for Visiting Lavallette
What's New: Nothing new to report.
Starring Role: Lavallette has been featured in the movies Greetings from the Jersey Shore and Tomorrow is Today.
Access and Parking: The only way to access Lavallette is along busy Route 35 from the North Dover/Toms River Township beaches to the north or from Ortley Beaches to the south. Route 35 is divided into a north and south section, often separated by an "island" of homes in the middle. Street parking is free, although some areas have limited hours.
Amenities: There are no bathrooms or showers along the boardwalk or at the beach. There are restrooms along the long bayside beaches at Philadelphia Avenue.
Beaches: Along most of the oceanfront, there is a boardwalk. Beach badges are required for access to all beaches. Full season badges are $60; weekly badges are $35. For people 65 years old or over, the seasonal badge is $20. For disabled people, the seasonal badge is $15. Daily badges are $12. No cost for people under the age of 12.
This spring, summer and fall, follow Jersey Shore author and expert R.C. Staab as he walks the entire 139 miles of the Jersey Shore from Sandy Hook to Island Beach State Park, from Old Barney to Beach Haven, from Brigantine to Cape May.
Next stop: Ortley Beach at Jersey Shore Walk Mile post 38. See profiles of North Dover Beaches, Brick Beaches, Mantoloking, Bay Head, Pt. Pleasant Beach and other Jersey Shore Walk beach towns at www.jerseyshorewalk.com