Top Jersey Shore Diners

July 30, 2014 7:00 AM

(credit: Chelsea Karnash/

Because it wouldn’t be a Jersey Shore vacation without a trip to a Jersey diner, here are the best spots for beach-goers.

Make a stop at Cape May’s Courthouse Diner before you hit the sand or see the animals at the Cape May Zoo. This old school eatery offers an array of Greek items as well as your standard diner fare. Frequenters recommend the meatloaf, burgers and desserts, which are baked in-house. While wait times can be long during the summer and this spot isn’t 24 hours, it’s worth a visit or two if you’re in town. Bonus: The menu even sports a vegetarian section!

Located right on the boardwalk, Wildwood’s Doo Wop Diner is a true landmark. The waitresses wear 50s style poodle skirts, the menu is retro-themed and there’s plenty of chrome and neon lights worked into the décor. You really can’t go wrong here; everything on the menu is good and the portions are huge. Try one of the Doo Wop’s more than 25 burgers for a hearty meal, or the M&M pancakes for something sweet.

“Eat Here, Get Gas!” That’s the tagline for this on-the-way-to-Cape May eatery. And while the tiny, traditional diner gets rave reviews for its breakfast, there’s not a lot of elbow room, so be prepared for close quarters.

Excellent soups, crispy fries and yummy Greek specialties make the adorably named Sand Castle Diner a must for shore locals. If you’re looking for an inexpensive meal to compliment your beach day, Sand Castle’s got you covered.

Giant, fresh salads set this near-ish to AC diner apart from its chrome-bedecked counterparts. From classic Greek to a more unique Santa Fe Chicken salad, there’s a big bowl of tasty greens for every taste. Another key to Silver Coin’s success? Consistency. Customers emphasize the place is always clean, the service friendly and the food fresh – not what you’d expect from a “greasy spoon.”

If you tend to veer towards North Jersey’s beaches, the Sunset Diner is where you want to eat breakfast. Conveniently located near Belmar, this spot is welcoming and usually packed with regulars – a testament to its quality food. Despite the truly Jersey location inside a strip mall, portions are big and service is friendly (if a bit slow).

Serving Wildwood locals and beach-goers since the 50s, this is a shore diner with history. And it’s no secret why the Surfside West has been around so long – the food is nothing short of delicious. Expecting plain ol’ buttermilk pancakes? You’re in for a treat! The Surfside West will wow you with options like apple blueberry, lemon ricotta and even BEER pancakes! Weird? Yes. Wonderful? Obviously!

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