Bay Shore Harbor offers residents and visitors a wide range of community and recreational opportunities. Just 43 miles from New York City, Bay Shore Harbor also offers access to the many cultural and social opportunities of one of the world's biggest and most sophisticated cities. This waterfront Bay Shore Harbor community is the gateway to Fire Island National Seashore and is near both Robert Moses State Park and Jones Beach. Fishermen find plentiful catches of flounder, bass, and fluke at the Bay Shore Harbor docks, on the bay, and on deep-water ocean charters. In addition, the area has many parklands and wildlife conservation preserves. Bay Shore Harbor's Main Street offers a variety of dining and shopping opportunities.
Bay Shore Harbor has a humid subtropical climate with hot humid summers and mild winters. Temperatures in Bay Shore Harbor range from an average high of 24°C (75°F) in July and August to an average low of -1°C (30°F) in January. Rainfall is lowest, at about three inches (7.5 centimeters) in February and July, and highest, at 4.5 inches (11 centimeters) in March. Humidity levels range from a low of about 70% in December and June to a high of 80% in September and October. Snow comes to Bay Shore Harbor from November through April and is heaviest in January, with almost seven inches (18 centimeters).
Bay Shore Harbor is the gateway to the Fire Island National Seashore, a popular vacation destination with beautiful beaches and natural beauty that generations of beach-goers, outdoor lovers, and water sports enthusiasts have enjoyed. Fire Island offers more than 160 kilometers (100 miles) of coastline, and boating and sailing are very popular activities. The island's several sailing clubs uphold the long tradition of sailing. Bikers will find miles of boardwalks along the beaches. At the beaches, clamming is a common practice for islanders, and the Atlantic Ocean side of the island offers some of the best crowd-free surfing in the northeastern United States. Fishers enjoy surf-casting and deep-sea fishing charters where they can catch tuna, marlin, and shark.
Fire Island also offers many hiking opportunities on its relatively short boardwalks at Watch Hill and Sailors Haven as well as the over eight kilometer (more than five mile) boardwalk that goes through the beach, salt marsh, and the holly forest. Campers will find 26 individual campsites and a group campsite at Fire Island's Watch Hill less than a kilometer (.5 miles) from the ferry. The Watch Hill campsites are open from the middle of May until the middle of October. Campsites are also available at Otis Pike and Smith Point. Fire Island is one of New York's best bird watching locations. Offering diverse habitats that support a variety of bird species throughout the y ear, more than 300 species have been recorded on Fire Island representing a third of North America's bird populations.
The Sunken Forest at Sailors Haven is one of the last maritime forests in the east. Covering more than 40 acres, the forest has holly, blueberry, bayberry, shadblow, and sassafras trees that are more than 200 years old. The Fire Island Lighthouse is the oldest structure on the island and has guided many immigrants into New York Harbor. The restored lighthouse is a public museum and observatory open every day in the summer for guided tours.