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Seaside resort communities are a dime a dozen along the East Coast, but not all of them have the urban glamour and understated chic of Asbury Park. Think Greenwich Village at the shore. Located 55 miles south of New York City, the community's taken a pummeling in the past from a failing economy and a crippling hurricane, but the soul of the region still flourishes in spite of the setbacks.

A reconstructed downtown district led to a cultural, economic and political revival that created a hub of interest for visitors, artists and the LGBT community.

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Rent Trends

As of August 2017, the average apartment rent in Asbury Park, NJ is $880 for a studio, $1,037 for one bedroom, $1,418 for two bedrooms, and $3,358 for three bedrooms. Apartment rent in Asbury Park has increased by 1.3% in the past year.

Beds
Avg Sq Ft
Avg Rent
Studio
430
$880
1 BR
364
$1,037
2 BR
676
$1,418
3 BR
0
$3,358
Beds
Avg Sq Ft
Avg Rent

Ratings

81 Walk Score® Very Walkable
41 Transit Score® Some Transit
0 Bike Score® Somewhat Bikeable

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Restaurants

The foodie scene in Asbury Park centers around the restaurants and coffee shops throughout the downtown district and the boardwalk.

Craving some of mom's down-home southern cooking? At the Table has got some of the best soul food around. Crispy fried chicken, collard greens, candied yams and mac and cheese are served in generous portions alongside hunks of buttered cornbread. Lick your fingers, lick the bowl, lick the table even, they promise not to judge.

If you're looking to expand your palette, MOGO Korean Fusion Tacos, located right on Asbury Park's boardwalk, stands as a solid choice with five choices of tacos, beef, pork, chicken, shrimp and tofu, marinated in a ginger, soy and garlic sauce that's not too spicy but full of zest. The perfect place for a late-night snack after visiting one of Asbury Park's music or art venues, MOGO is definitely worth checking out.

Look no further than the musical mecca of the Stone Pony for a raucously fun night out. Launching the music careers of big names like Springsteen and Bon Jovi, the Pony is one of rock and roll's celebrated venues. The summer season brings an outdoor concert lineup of some of the most revered bands. A full bar with decent prices and an opportunity to people watch some colorful characters make this a venue to entertain the whole gang.

History

Asbury Park's gay community began in the 1950s. Plummeting property values brought an influx of gay couples from New York City restoring Victorian homes and revitalizing parts of the town.

For over 20 years, Asbury Park has hosted the annual gay pride parade with throngs of crowds along the sidewalks in support of the LGBT community. Live musical performances, food vendors and kid-friendly activities bring the neighborhood together for a day.

The Paranormal Museum, located in a small storefront in the downtown district, houses a collection of exhibits that delve into the unexplained myths and legends that invade American culture. Displays questioning haunted objects, werewolves and spirits explore the unseen supernatural realm in a quirky "Roadside America"-type attraction.

Transportation

A car is not a necessity for getting around Asbury Park, since a bike or feet generally can take you where you need to go. If you do have a set of wheels, get ready to pony up for parking, since most of it is metered or found in attendant-monitored lots near the beach. The off-season brings free parking in the lots, so avoid the meters if you can.

Uber is yet to have a presence in the area; while taxis are available if you call ahead for service. NJ Transit offers bus service to Philadelphia, Long Branch, Freehold and Redbank, and there is rail service to New York City.

Cost

Living in Asbury Park costs a little over 10 percent more than the state's average, but given the area's culture, proximity to the beach and overall vibe, it's a cost well worth it. Gas is going to run about 11 percent higher than the national average.

A one-bedroom apartment is about $835 a month, but there are apartments to be found in both higher and lower brackets. A beer will set you back $6.

Shopping

Under the umbrella of the town, there's beach, boardwalk, cafes and art galleries. The revitalized downtown district houses antique stores, restaurants and shops. The vibe is one part hipster, one part punk and two parts art dynamo.

The shops on Cookman Avenue range from tattoo parlors to record exchanges to a vintage clothing store selling Chanel suits. Here you will find Foolish Ginger, a unique boutique filled with handmade jewelry, flirty dresses and whimsical gifts and housewares. The owner designs most of the jewelry and is usually around to help you pick the perfect gift.

Walk through the doors of Silverball Museum on the boardwalk and find yourself immersed in the sights and sounds of childhood nostalgia. Bring the kids or release your inner child as you pass through aisles of pinball machines ranging in age, some dating back to the 1930s. The cheap admission allows for hours of entertainment in the form of Skeeball, PacMan, Revenge from Mars or The Simpsons. A cafe serves traditional boardwalk treats like funnel cake, salt water taffy and nachos.

The area is served by a Super Supermarket, known for its low prices and ethnic food section. Asbury Fresh Local Artisan Market holds a spot as one of the funkiest farmers' markets around. Over 30 vendors participate each week, bringing a bevy of fresh produce, pottery, paintings and raw vegan everything to the table. For one-of-a-kind products and the healthiest food you can sink your teeth into, spend a Sunday morning chilling at Asbury Fresh.

Parks

Asbury Park, the park, not the town, has a baseball diamond, basketball court, tennis courts, volleyball courts, and swings and slides for the kids. There is a pavilion available to rent out for parties and picnics.

Althaus Nature Reserve is a great spot for running, hiking and biking with its 5 miles of trails and scenic wetlands area. Note that pets are not allowed at any of the public parks or trails in the community. There is a stretch of beach on 8th Avenue where the dog beach allows for Fido to visit from 6 p.m. to around 8 a.m.

Speaking of beaches, Asbury Park is home to the most eclectic Jersey Shore experience to be had. Sip on a rum bucket next to tattooed hipsters and Jersey girl old ladies, stroll the short but animated boardwalk, or simply plant yourself in the sand and enjoy the crashing of the waves.

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