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Readers’ Choice: Favorite Long Island Beach

We’re going all in on this one. If you love your local beach, then let your voice be heard.

Long Islanders take their beaches very seriously. In many cases, it’s the biggest reason they wouldn’t consider calling any other place home.

But with all of the sandy shores from Long Beach to Montauk, or the serene rocky bluffs that line the North Shore from Sands Point to Orient, surely there has to be one beach that stands above them all, right? Let’s find out.

This week we’re taking our weekly Readers’ Choice poll and putting to the entire Long Island population to see if indeed there's one beach among jewels such as Jones Beach, Robert Moses and any pristine shore in the Hamptons that deserves top bragging rights for 2012.

If one thing is certain, then we expect this to be a close race, so tell your friends to vote.

Readers’ Choice is a weekly feature where we ask you – our readers – to tell us your top picks on the businesses and local attractions that get your loyalty.

While the poll is a big one this week, we tried to limit it to the most popular beaches on Long Island. If you think we left one off that needs to be included, tell us in the comments.

On Friday we’ll tabulate all of the poll votes and comments, and crown and fly a winner’s flag in the sand of one of these amazing beaches.

Don’t let your favorite spot lose, but please only vote once in the following poll. Any attempt to game the poll could result in your favorite spot being disqualified.

(Please see the accompanying PDF for the complete rules.)

And stay "tuned" for our Long Island Beach Guide, which launches on Wednesday.

Jon L May 29, 2012 at 02:26 PM
I spent my youthful summers (and still do) out on Fire Island, so I guess I'm biased. But the real advantage of the F.I. National Seashore is the constant east to west littoral drift of beach sand. It constantly renews itself, cleansing the bathing area to a soft white texture. Of course, the littoral drift can be a disadvantage if too much sand gets swept away in a storm, but by and large it is a consistently beautiful beach. As Robert Moses is part of the Seashore I propose combining the two scores.
mary ann May 29, 2012 at 02:39 PM
Mindy -- I was in Long Beach on Sat. in the East End. What a fabulous day! Some friends and family live down there and I was jealous. I didn't want to leave and come back East. Been going to LB on and off for over 30 years and have seen many changes. I do think they need a new boardwalk and wish they would replace the old one...the sun, surf and air cannot be beat! Spent time years ago at the Malibu Beach Club (cabanas, pools and lockers) smack on the beach. It's still there and fabulous. Hmmmm, guess I'll go to Cedar Beach in Mt. Sinai today...sweet beach, but not the OCEAN!!!!!!!!! Enjoy.
ELLA May 29, 2012 at 02:39 PM
I grew up in Copiague and went to all of the local ocean and bay beaches. Also visited some on the sound but they couldn’t compare to the ocean. I enjoyed all of them, but my favorite . . . the ocean . . . Gilgo or Cedar.
Bebe May 29, 2012 at 02:53 PM
West Neck Beach in Huntington. Yeah, it's rocky and short but it's closest to home and the beach I grew up with. Yes, the south shore beaches are nice, but I'm not fond of parking long distances from the water, shlepping my stuff, trying to find a spot to sit and dealing with lots of people. Sorry, but that was my impression of Jones Beach, etc. every time I went.
Ben May 29, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Gilgo Beach is a great beach.
Christina Strassfield May 29, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Flying Point! love the cut, bay and ocean all in one!
Geezer May 29, 2012 at 03:47 PM
Leja Beach
Brian May 29, 2012 at 04:29 PM
Santa Monica
Fred Stewart May 29, 2012 at 04:44 PM
west neck is a great beach... quiet and secluded...
Christine May 29, 2012 at 05:04 PM
If people are not going to a particular beach on Long Island it may be because it is: - private to those who live along the beach - private to those who live in the surrounding village - public but there is no parking anywhere near it
Chrissy May 29, 2012 at 05:06 PM
When I was a kid, and my Dad still alive, we had a bay house or "shack" in Woodmere Bay and we would go their every summer in his 10 foot duck boat, the three kids and the dog. I will take the bay house mud over a sandy beach anytime, we had the best times swimming, crabbing, clamming, fishing, water skiing, etc., good childhood memories for this old lady.
Christine May 29, 2012 at 05:14 PM
I agree Bebe.
Matt Markell May 29, 2012 at 05:59 PM
It's hard to believe that anyone would choose to live in Long Beach and consider another beach to be the best.
Misty May 29, 2012 at 06:34 PM
Grew up in Massapequa and went to Tobay. Love that beach. But after living in Long Beach for 30 years, I like Long Beach so much more. LB has the nicest, cleanest sand on all of Long Island.
Barbara Magiera May 29, 2012 at 07:29 PM
Crab Meadow is a beautiful beach ever changing with the tides....clean beach and facilities, never too crowded and wonderful, cheery and ever so helpful staff!
Doug Wald May 29, 2012 at 09:43 PM
My personal favorites are Tiana Beach in Hampton Bays, Cupsogue Beach in Westhampton Dunes and Napeague State Park in Amagansett. At Napeague, there is nothing but sand, dunes and gorgeous oceanfront for miles. No hot dog trucks, no condos, no booming radios, no infrastructure, no houses, no nothing.
Lucy Centeno May 29, 2012 at 11:12 PM
I live in Long Beach for 49 years, since the age of 9. The last time I was on the beach for enjoyment was when I was 13. Not since. And I never took my kids on it either. As adults, they go on with friends sometimes. I took my kids to the Rockaways, mostly bet. the 70s and 80s. Quiet, not crowded, perfect. Sometimes we went by Bch 9th to enjoy the kiddie park there. You can BBQ there and mingle with other families and make great friends. ALL colors, ethnicities, and religions. Had a blast! Even Coney Island was a TRUE fun time at the beach! Long Island, NY, hah. The bigot belt of the North, oh, correction, the CLOSET BIGOT BELT. Not many will face someone and say "I don't want to sit near you because you speak another language, or, your color disgusts me, or you drink the cheap stuff, or, you just have to much FUN for me". I also think that those beaches are cleaner and the water is so much better.
PB684 May 30, 2012 at 12:00 AM
I absolutely agree! That first beautiful day of the season when I make the very short trip to the south shore beaches...crossing over the bridge and getting that first glimpse of the georgous sunshine hitting the water, the smell of the sea air...there's nothing that makes me relax quicker! I don't think I could ever live anywhere else.
CommackMom May 30, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Lighthouse Beach!
Robert W May 30, 2012 at 02:53 AM
Censorship alive and well on the patch!
Linda Henninger May 30, 2012 at 04:10 AM
Oak Beach ;0)
Maddie's momma May 30, 2012 at 11:01 AM
Grew up in Massapequa, love Tobay! Live in Seaford now, so I can't go there any longer :( (unless I borrow my parents' car) Jones Beach is much too crowded and too far from parking to shore and shore to facilities, Especially when with kids! Nice off-season though.
fred May 30, 2012 at 11:12 AM
Try Siesta Key in Sarasota
theresa macdonald May 30, 2012 at 01:01 PM
Every year all of my friends take a trip out toCupsogue beach in Quogue. We spend the day there, have dinner at the Beach Hut. Always a beautiful day! My favorite local beach is Jones Beach field 6. Love Long Island for the beaches!
Marielaina Perrone DDS May 31, 2012 at 02:04 AM
My favorite to this day is Robert Moses Beach. Don't get there as often as I used to but still stop by when I am in area. http://www.drperrone.com
Mr Dunes May 31, 2012 at 02:41 AM
My favorites happens to be the nude beach, where I can freely let it all hang out... WOOOOOOH!
Marc Rosen May 31, 2012 at 08:29 AM
Aren't there a few of those on the Island?
Jaguar-Guy May 31, 2012 at 11:46 AM
I remember going to "Stayley's Beach" in Bayville, near Center Island back in the day. It had a tunnel to walk from the Oyster Bay side of the inlet, to the Long Island Sound side . . . sweet.
Wendy M June 26, 2012 at 11:15 PM
The best beach is Ditch in Montauk. The 2nd best is Cedar Beach in Babylon, it is the only beach that seems to not erode like the rest of the island.
An tUasal Airgead June 28, 2012 at 12:58 PM
At 224 of New York’s 372 beaches, there were 1,841 closing and advisory days last year. That was a 93 percent increase from 956 such days in 2010, a relatively clean year for state beaches. The report from the Natural Resources Defense Council, called “Testing the Waters: A Guide to Water Quality at Vacation Beaches” and released on Wednesday, found that a confluence of events — heavy rainfall, Hurricane Irene and a fire at a sewage treatment plant on the Hudson River in Harlem — had contributed to increased contamination of area beaches. The fire alone discharged 200 hundred millions gallons of raw sewage into New York area waters. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/28/nyregion/number-of-pollution-related-beach-closings-in-new-york-rose-sharply-in-2011.html

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