/ The New York City Traveler
New York — By Steve Mirsky on June 3, 2010 at 11:51 pm
Filed under: beach, featuredarticle, swimming

Pick Your NYC Beach

The heat is already here and it’s only a matter of a few weeks before it’s warm enough for ocean swimming.  So if you want something more than spray fountains or City pools, you’re in luck!  NYC actually has beaches within walking distance of the subway.

Orchard Beach

The main attraction of NYC’s beaches isn’t that they’re remote pristine hideaways, but that they offer a cool and eclectic respite from summer’s blazing concrete and asphalt.  If you can shrug aside drab changing rooms and share outdoor showers with hordes of sandy folks crowded under more-often-than-not dribbling spigots, all 14 miles of NYC’s public beaches await free of charge without proving residency or joining a club.

It’s all a quick and cheap train ride to sandy stretches like Orchard Beach () aka the Bronx Riviera pulsing with a medley of salsa and merengue while push cart beach vendors serve up piraguas,  brightly colored cups of shaved ice flavored with icky sweet and powerfully fruity syrups. This crescent-shaped spit of sand is right on Long Island Sound in Pelham Bay Park (map) off the last No. 6 train stop.

Or try Fort Tilden (map), a decommissioned military base in Queens where huge concrete bunkers, old munitions sheds, and defunct nuclear missile silos share space with the sand dunes.  The observatory deck on top of Battery Harris East (map), a historic gun site, offers dramatic views of Jamaica Bay and New York Harbor.  Take the A train to Rockaway Park and then transfer to a Q35 or Q22 bus.

At the small beach in Barretto Point Park () in the Hunts Point (map) section of the Bronx, you can set out a beach chair and

Barretto Point Park

gaze at the huge infamous prison looming across the water on Rikers Island (map).  And if you’re feeling more physically inclined, volleyball and basketball courts await.  Take the 6 Train to Hunts Point Ave. Station and then transfer to a bus marked with a destination sign reading Barretto Point Pool.  This bus runs seven days a week at 30 minute intervals from about 8 a.m. to shortly after 7:30 p.m.

Brooklyn’s Coney Island (map) is certainly a long running classic for some fun-in-the-sun but continue a little further to Brighton Beach (map)and body surf amid a sea of recent Russian emigres.  Aromatic vodka in plastic cups and nearly nude sunbathing on this vast beach add to the allure of the many excellent eateries clustering around Brighton Beach Ave. (map). Take the B or Q elevated train to Brighton Beach just steps from the boardwalk.

photos courtesy of NYC Department of Parks and Recreation

Related places:
  1. A
    Orchard Beach, Bronx, NY 10464
    Orchard Beach, Bronx, NY 10464
    View Details and Book
  2. B
    Pelham Bay Park
    Pelham Bay Park, Bronx, New York 10464, United States, undefined
    View Details and Book
  3. C
    Pelham Bay Park
    Pelham Bay Park, Bronx, New York 10464, United States, undefined
    View Details and Book
  4. D
    Fort Tilden, New York
    Fort Tilden, New York
    View Details and Book
  5. E
    Fort Tilden, New York
    Fort Tilden, New York
    View Details and Book
  6. F
    Gateway National Recreation
    Rockaway Point Boulevard, Far Rockaway, NY
    View Details and Book
  7. G
    Barretto Point Park
    View Details and Book
  8. H
    Barretto Point Park
    View Details and Book
  9. I
    Hunts Point - Longwood, New York, NY
    Hunts Point - Longwood, New York, NY
    View Details and Book
  10. J
    Rikers Island, Bronx, NY 10474
    Rikers Island, Bronx, NY 10474
    View Details and Book
  11. K
    Coney Island, NY
    Coney Island, NY, undefined
    View Details and Book
  12. L
    Brighton Beach
    Brighton Beach, undefined
    View Details and Book
  13. M
    Brighton Beach
    Brighton Beach, undefined
    View Details and Book
  14. N
    Brighton Beach
    Brighton Beach, undefined
    View Details and Book
Tags: beach, featuredarticle, swimming


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