Well-known for amusement parks and entertainment festivities, Coney Island is one of the few places that will remind you of the old historical New York City. The peninsula is a part of Brooklyn and is home to 24,000 New Yorkers. Coney Island is a popular getaway spot for locals and visitors alike. Whether you like amusements parks, the beach, food or shopping, Coney Island is the place to be. Even though it’s a bit far from Manhattan, it is very easily accessible by subway, with the D, F, N and Q trains stopping there.
1. Coney Island Luna Park
Nothing embodies the spirit of Coney Island quite like the famous Luna Park. This legendary amusement park has been through a rough history of fires, destruction, bankruptcies and conspiracy, but since its 2008 revamping has, again, become a staple of entertainment in Brooklyn for locals and visitors alike. The Luna Park is full of exhilarating thrill rides, as well as more subdued kiddie rides, for all to enjoy. If you have a New York Pass, you get a 4 hour unlimited wrist band which will get you into most if the rides, including our favorite, The Steeplechase. Opens April 8.
2. The Cyclone
Luna Park’s main attraction is the wooden roller coaster named The Cyclone. This ride covers 2,640 feet in just over a minute and will leave you exhilarated in a way modern roller coasters just can’t. The Cyclone was build in 1927 and has since received many makeovers, while still preserving its natural historic look and integrity. The Cyclone offers a true old-school Luna Park experience unlike any other. Opens April 8.
3. Deno’s Wonder Wheel
The landmarked Deno’s Wonderwheel is the focal point of all Coney Island photographs. This historic ride, built in 1920, offers the perfect setting for a romantic summer night date or for some daytime family fun. For the first time this season, you can visit the Deno’s Wonderwheel Amusement Park with your New York Pass. Opens April 8.
4. Beach and Boardwalk
Out of the beaches in New York City, the one is Coney Island may not be the most glamorous, but it is the most popular. Every summer, thousands of local families as well as visitors dip their toes in the Coney Island Waters, while sipping on fresh coconut water and devouring a hot dog from Nathans. If you’re not a beach body, you can just take a walk on the wooden boardwalk while you shop for souvenirs and take in the local culture.
5. New York Aquarium
The oldest operating aquarium in the United States is still open for viewing in Coney Island. The New York Aquarium opened in late 1896 and is still available for visitors to experience a wide variety of sea life in the city.
6. Brooklyn Cyclones game
Baseball is New York City’s most beloved sport and even though most people are divided between the Yankees and the Mets, there are plenty of other teams to root for. If you’re in Coney Island, make sure you catch a Cyclones game at look at the lovely ocean view from the stadium.
7. Mermaid Parade
Celebrate the beginning of Summer at Coney Island’s Mermaid Parade. Thousands of people from across the city come together in late June wearing mermaid costumes for a Mardi Gras-esque event. Celebrating artistic expression, the mermaid parade attracts eccentric individuals, who like to express themselves in elaborate and colorful costumes. This year, you can join the parade or cheer on the participants on June 17th.
8. Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs
For more than a 100 years, Nathan’s has been serving delicious New York City hot dogs out of its flagship location on Stillwell Avenue in Coney Island. The shop is still there, even as Nathan’s drastically expanded their brand throughout NYC. No trip to Coney Island would be complete without a stop at this iconic street-food eatery. Nathan’s is open 365 days a year.
The only Wahlburgers in NYC is located right in Coney Island. This famous burger spot, owned by Donnie Wahlberg, brother of Mark Wahlberg offers delicious burgers with a rooftop and great views of the Luna Park.