Day Trip to Long Beach from New York City
[ NEW YORK, NY - NYC - 7/21/2009 - www.Littleviews.com ]
>> Visiting New York City? Why not enjoy a day at the beach, basking on the sand while watching Atlantic Ocean waves roll in! Among many things, New York City is but a short distance away from shore pleasures.
Beach access in Long Beach is public. On the west, beach access begins at Nevada Avenue. All north-south streets from here to the boardwalk, in fact, end on the beach. Entrances are marked by small, wooden platforms attended by villagers who validate beach passes. These passes are sold at nearby shops, such as the Beach Street Bagel Shop by the corner of Nevada and Beach Street.
This western section of Long Beach features charming beach homes that appear to have been built in the early 1900s. Most are stucco combined with brick, being two-to-three stories high, with a garage on the first floor. All are kept beautifully up-to-date.
If you arrive by train, it's worth walking west to stroll through this area. Conveniently, Ocean View Avenue (an alley running parallel to the beach) is accessible from the west boardwalk.
If you don't want to walk, consider renting bikes to explore the area (car parking is scarce). Bikes can be rented at Buddy's Bike 907 W. Beech Street, (516) 431-0804, and at Long Beach Bicycle, 755 East Park Avenue, (516) 432-9632.
Most New York day trippers commute by Long Island Rail Road, arriving at the pretty depot located at Park Place and East Park Avenue. To the immediate east of the depot is a cab company, which is especially handy if you want to visit beaches and soccer fields located in the Lido Beach area.
Across the street from the depot are numerous restaurants, with the popular Five Guys Burgers (fabulous fries; reasonable prices) located on the corner.
From the train, most people walk along Edwards Boulevard, which leads to the approximate center of the boardwalk. This route is very plain, disguising the fact that homes on the cross-streets are stunning.
Just prior to arriving at the boardwalk, you'll see bland apartment buildings. Once on the boardwalk, you'll see their out-dated fronts along its north side. Given that housing in Long Beach is so stunning, these old condos need to be targeted for renovation.
If you arrive by train, be sure to buy the Long Island Rail Road beach package (www.mta.info/lirr and select "beach packages"), which includes discounted beach passes in its price.
The refurbished boardwalk is exceptionally wide, with a bike path clearly marked. Comfortable benches line the beach-side of the boardwalk, with condos on the opposite side. To my knowledge, there is no public lodging along the beach. The one building that bills itself as a resort is actually a geriatric home.
The beach seems like it extends forever to the east and west, with enough room to handle crowds. Pictured below is the beach on a hot, July weekday. Weekends see a lot more traffic.
Snack carts serve as restaurants on the boardwalk. You are, of course, free to bring in your own food. Pictured below is a typical snack cart, plus one of many beach access gates.
Near each end of the boardwalk is a children's playground like the one below.
The streets running parallel to the boardwalk are filled with beautiful homes and stunning landscapes. Pictured below is the Felix House, which is on the National Register of Historic Places. That home and the one that follows are located on the "Red Brick Street Historic District" circa 1909. While this street has a special designation, it is just one of many that I believe you'll enjoy seeing.
I recommend walking around Long Beach neighborhoods during the late summer and early fall, when cool breezes blow and gardens are on full display. East or west, the city is beautiful.
Not pictured here are several public beaches located in the Lido Beach area. Access these beaches from Lido Boulevard, with each beach fronted by a huge parking lot. Many (if not all) feature bathhouses, and some, soccer fields. Traveling east, the first beach you'll reach has a large playground (Allevard Street).
Article and photos by Karen Little. Annotated maps are based on maps from Microsoft Streets & Trips. First published on 7/21/2009. All rights reserved by www.Littleviews.com.