Known as “a cool little town,” Red Bank has transformed from “dead bank” into one of the most popular destinations in New Jersey. Our local guide to Red Bank will help you find anything and everything that you’re looking for – from a fine dining meal, to a Broadway caliber play, a day out by the water, or even high fashion, Red Bank has it all.
Jersey Shore Local Guide to Red Bank
Easily accessed by NJ Transit train and bus, Red Bank is just a short ride away from pretty much anywhere in the Garden State. Parking can be an issue, at least that’s what people tend to complain about, but with our local guide to Red Bank you’ll find a parking spot in no time.
Red Bank Parking Tips
First off, finding a spot in the two main lots in Red Bank is usually a fruitless effort. The White Street lot, and the English Plaza lots are usually the first places where people begin their search for parking. Do yourself a favor and skip right over those lots.
If you’re on Broad St., = turn down either Wallace St. or Linden Pl. and go a block east of Broad St. Here you’ll find a huge parking lot that spans three streets (see teal oval in the picture below), and 90% of the time will always has a spot! And if you encounter a spot that says Morgan Stanley or Merril Lynch Parking Only – guess what, it’s free after 5pm & on weekends.
Another option is to head down West Front St. away from Broad St. There you’ll find a deck attached to Pazzo that’s free. Yes, free. It’s walking distance to Count Basie Theater and downtown. Seriously, we don’t understand why more people don’t park here.
So now that you have a parking spot, let’s get you in on the fun.
If you’re a Kevin Smith fan, you probably know the town of Red Bank pretty well. Practically all of the scenes from Smith’s cult classic Chasing Amy were filmed on these brick lined sidewalks. But really, this town is way more than a past movie location.
Red Bank has over gone a resurgence over the past few decades with the help of the Red Bank RiverCenter, but also because of its eclectic group of residents that include everyone from artists to bankers. More recently, the West side has been getting some love as the town awaits the opening of New Jersey’s Triumph Brewing Company and B2 Bistro + Bar. It’s just another step forward for this cool little town.
Food, Music, and Shopping in Red Bank
Possibly becoming the unofficial restaurant capital of New Jersey, Red Bank has grown into a foodie’s playground. With our local guide to Red Bank, we’ll bring you on a mini tour of the world without leaving town. Start off in the east by feasting on a dish of Lobster Fried Rice at Temple Gourmet Chinese. There are so many restaurants to try that you’ll be itching to come back again and again just so you can enjoy it all. Here is a list of all of our favorites in this cool little town.
Not only does Red Bank have access to world cuisine, but also world class music. Following in William “Count” Basie’s footsteps, the famous jazz pianist and composer who was born and raised here singing classics like “Red Bank Boogie” and “The Kid from Red Bank,” Red Bank has become a hub for those wanting to rock.
Musicians continue to flock here, playing in favorite haunts like The Downtown, The Dublin House, and Jamian’s Food & Drink. On pretty much any night of the week, you can find music and dancing. After dancing the night away, satisfy those late night cravings at Hansel n’ Griddle long after the bars have closed.
Along with live music, you can find world class theater and artwork. Take in a show at the landmark Count Basie Theater that opened in 1926. The theater itself takes you back in time, offering amazing acoustics for the many artists that have graced the stage including Tony Bennett, James Brown, and New Jersey’s beloved Bruce Springsteen. Within walking distance of the theater are some of Red Bank’s best BYOB restaurants including Front Street Trattoria where you can enjoy a classic Italian meal and Dish for entrees curated by world class chefs. If a strong cocktail is what you’re looking for, cross the street to Teak Restaurant where you can also find Asian fusion dishes.
A few blocks away you’ll find Two River Theater, which opened in 2005 across the street from The Galleria, a large brick building that was once an old button factory. Enjoy dinner and a show by dining next door at Danny’s Steakhouse or walk down the street to the newly opened San Remo Italian Restaurant for a fresh pasta dish that will make your nonna jealous.
A Stroll Through Red Bank
Situated on the Navesink River, Red Bank is surrounded by multi-million dollar estates, extraordinary boats, and beautiful vistas. Take a river walk down through Marine Park or Riverside Gardens, then stroll up to Broad and Front Street where you’ll have access to a number of restaurants like The Bistro on Broad Street, Gotham and Catch.
Red Bank offers the perfect atmosphere to take a casual stroll down the brick lined sidewalk. Peak inside Poor Cat, Madison Boutique or Goldtinker, for beautiful jewelry and fashions, or stop in Garmany and Coco Pari for a taste of high-end designer fashion and footwear. Who needs New York City when you’ve got access to it all right here?
Maybe it’s a fun unique activity that you’re looking for. If that’s the case, visit A Time To Kiln, where you can create and paint your own pottery! It’s fund for adults and kids.
Since it’s not physically possible to fit everything into one day (or maybe two), stay the night at The Molly Pitcher Inn, the most iconic hotel in the area (which also hosts the most extravagant brunch around – just book early!) Or stay at The Molly’s modern sister, The Oyster Point Hotel, right down the street. Either way, you’ll be enjoying panoramic views of The Navesink.
No matter what you do during your time in Red Bank, you’ll find something new or old at every corner. It’s a town that’s full of history and new beginnings, combining the young and the old into one beautiful song that we’re sure Count Basie would sing about. So now that you have all the insider information thanks to our local guide to Red Bank, go and enjoy everything that this cool little town has to offer. It’s a lot, so be ready to come back!
Each week, Jersey Shore in Motion will spotlight towns along the Jersey Shore sharing their history, local favorites, and unique attractions. Last week we visited Seaside Heights and Seaside Park. Stay tuned for next week’s Local Guide to Manasquan and Brielle.