The selection of beaches near Rochester isn’t huge. There are about ten options within an hour’s drive.
Yet, the choice here is diverse. City parks, state parks, and private campgrounds offer plenty of options to beachgoers.
Whether you’re looking for a swimming spot, a beachcombing treasure trove, or simply a picnic area with a view, there are excellent options on the list.
Check out what Rochester has to offer!
Beaches near Rochester:
- Durand Eastman Beach
- Ontario Beach
- Irondequoit Bay Beach
- Rosie’s Marsh Beach
- Hamlin Beach
- Sodus Point Beach
- Fair Haven Beach
- Green Harbor Campground
- Lakeside Beach
- Yates Town Park
1. Durand Eastman Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 7 miles (15 min)
- Activities: swimming, boating, jet skiing
- Amenities: parking, porta-potties, grilling spots, picnic tables
Durand Eastman Beach is a very quiet and peaceful beach to explore on weekdays if you are in Rochester. However, on weekends and holidays, chances are high that you’ll have to withstand crowds of beachgoers.
There are many appealing reasons why Durand Eastman Beach is a special spot. First, you are allowed to bring pets along. Secondly, it’s the nearest beach to Rochester. And thirdly, it has miles of sandy real estate to spread out.
Durand Eastman Beach is one of Rochester’s main swimming spots, with lifeguards on duty during peak months.
Behind this beach lies old castle grounds and hiking trails for exploring the area and getting daily steps in. This area is the perfect spot for taking photos or simply admiring nature.
2. Ontario Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 8 miles (15 min)
- Activities: boating, swimming, kayaking, volleyball, fishing
- Amenities: fishing pier, sheltered picnic grounds, resting benches, paved pathways, ice cream shop, lifeguards
Ontario Beach boasts some of the longest piers in Rochester. It gives you deeper and wide views of Lake Ontario.
Fishing buffs, be sure to come out of this beach carrying a load of good tidings. At the end is a lighthouse that adds to the immersive beauty of this place.
Anyone with a family can check out the sheltered picnic grounds or even lay out a mat on the perfectly maintained lawn to make some new memories. If the kids are still pumped up for more fun, walk them toward the historic Dentzel Carousel for wildly entertaining rides.
In the entire Rochester, Ontario Beach easily ranks as one of the best spots. Come summertime, it attracts crowds of eager beachgoers who come to cool off, work on a tan, and play sand volleyball (nets provided).
3. Irondequoit Bay Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 9 miles (10 min)
- Activities: boating, fishing, lounging, kayaking, paddleboarding
- Amenities: parking, fishing pier, boat ramp
Irondequoit Bay Beach is a spectacularly gorgeous harbor on the edges of Lake Ontario. Its most prominent feature is the fishing pier. It is one of the longest in the area, with a colorful lighthouse at the end.
The edges of the pier are dotted with big rocks that you can sit on and gaze upon the vast waters or throw your reel in the lake to catch fish.
The weather can be brutal here, but summertime offers a welcome break from storms, allowing for beach activities.
There is a three-lane boat ramp and a couple of marinas on the Irondequoit Bay side, making it an excellent spot for combining beach activities with boating and fishing.
If you are looking to simply kick back and unwind from your hectic schedule, Irondequoit Bay Beach will quench that thirst.
On busy days, parking could be an issue, so make it a point to arrive as early as possible.
4. Rosie’s Marsh Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 18 miles (25 min)
- Activities: birdwatching, hiking
- Amenities: none
Rosie’s Marsh Beach is an incredible find for those who love adventures off the beaten path. It’s part of the Braddock Bay Wildlife Management Area and requires either a hike or a boat to get to.
There are lots of tree thickets to explore. In fact, right near the beach, there is a bird-watching center where you can sit down and listen to the feathery friends joyfully chime. The wildlife management area specializes in hawks and owls, providing excellent chances to spot one.
There are no amenities here. This is merely a hideaway gem for ocean shore and bird-watching lovers. If you love dense forest settings and crowd-free beaches, make it number one on your travel list.
5. Hamlin Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 29 miles (35 min)
- Activities: swimming, camping, picnicking
- Amenities: lifeguard, rental pavilion, snack shop, shower, restroom, campgrounds, electricity, wheelchair mobility mats
Hamlin Beach is one of the most popular lakefront beaches near Rochester. It makes for a great day trip thanks to its clear waters, multiple picnic areas, and playgrounds for kids.
Despite being immensely popular, this beach has a lot of space to explore. So you don’t have to fret about overcrowding problems. There are pavilions for special occasions, grill sections, campgrounds, and fire pits. And the best part is that this facility is always clean and well maintained, thanks to the amazing state park workers.
Multiple trails exist for an adventurous walk inside the park’s tall green trees. During your walk, you’ll come across resting benches for relaxing and soaking in the beauty and tranquility of Hamlin Beach. There are around five beach sections. Three & four are lifeguarded and therefore ideal for swimming.
6. Sodus Point Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 39 miles (45 min)
- Activities: swimming, picnicking, fishing
- Amenities: lifeguards, pavilions, walking pier, children’s playground, public bathhouse, parking lot, bathrooms
Sodus Point Beach is also an ideal hideaway vacation setting for those traveling east of Rochester. Like Ontario Beach, this one, too, has an extensive walking pier equipped with a lighthouse.
This is a small beach but wide worth visiting for a day. You’ll find a small children’s playground and a pavilion stocked with chairs and tables for relaxing and taking snacks.
Sodus Point Beach is pretty much an open space which makes it great if you want to see Lake Ontario, the lighthouse, and surrounding areas in their full splendor. And if you’ve got your fishing gear with you, then be sure to test your luck for Chinook salmon.
7. Fair Haven Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 60 miles (1h 10min)
- Activities: hiking, camping, swimming, picnicking, kayaking, boating, golfing
- Amenities: camping spots, 18-hole golf course, showers, lifeguards, hiking trails, restrooms, changing rooms, grills, boat launch, kayak rentals
Once you pull up at Fair Haven Beach, chances are high that you won’t need to check out any other beach soon.
With a camp store, rental, and campgrounds that are ready to supply you with anything, only good times await. You could camp here for days and never lack something to do. This is a truly special place.
This haven is rife with lots of fun activities to partake in, from swimming to golfing. At the beach, you and your family can traverse the lengthy 1,500 feet of sandy shores, swim, take a walk or set down mats for picnicking.
If you crave quiet time, then you better visit Fair Haven Beach between Mondays and Wednesdays. The place is massively packed on Fridays and weekends.
Also, the park has some of the best boardwalks and paved hiking trails that cut through densely wooded areas and nearby bluffs, where the views get even more spectacular.
8. Green Harbor Campground
- Distance from Rochester: 45 miles (55 min)
- Activities: camping, boating, canoeing, swimming
- Amenities: fire pits, boat launch, concession stand, dump station, restroom, showers, camp store
Green Harbor Campground is a camping gem located in Lyndonville and accessible via Lakeshore road. This is a private business enterprise run by Don and Barb Anderson (very accommodating individuals) and has both a beach and a marina.
So yes, the core activities to indulge in here are camping and boating. To make your experience fulfilling, they have a multitude of amenities, from dock slips to water and electricity. Down at the beach, you can opt to swim, ride a boat, canoe, or go fishing.
Green Harbor Campground is usually lit up with special events during weekends in the course of summer. Some spots are stacked with grills for barbecue preparation, and there’s also a nice area reserved for beer lovers.
Veteran campers touring the NY state should check this place out. It’s just an hour’s drive away from Rochester.
9. Lakeside Beach
- Distance from Rochester: 41 miles (45 min)
- Activities: camping, site-seeing, golfing, hiking, biking, fishing
- Amenities: campgrounds, bathrooms, playground, fire pit, disc golf course
If you find yourself driving west along the lake and you need some time on shore, the best option could be Lakeside Beach in Waterport. It doubles up as a state park for a perfect natural escape.
This park is ideal for site-seeing as well as camping. Some campsites have uneven ground but compensate for it with the most splendid views of Lake Ontario.
Despite its name, swimming isn’t allowed at Lakeside Beach. It’s all about camping, hiking, and the views here.
10. Yates Town Park
- Distance from Rochester: 47 miles (55 min)
- Activities: sunset watching, picnicking, lounging
- Amenities: grills, picnic tables, pavilion
Yates Town Park lets you relax, read, paint or just stare into vast water horizons. It’s for those who are avoiding large crowds.
On-site, you’ll spot a pavilion for throwing small parties. There are also picnic tables and grills for those who would love to cook as they enjoy splendid views of Lake Ontario.
The shores are not that sandy. In fact, it’s rocky and therefore inviting for those who still cherish the tradition of throwing rocks in the lake. Yates Town Park isn’t a typical beach destination, yet, it offers lake access and an opportunity to get your feet wet and soak in the views.
Some construction is still going on at Yates Town Park to make the beach and park more accessible. New bathrooms and restrooms are also being built.
Lakes in New York: