• Best Beaches in NYC For a Relaxing Day in the Sun

    Best Beaches in NYC

This summer, leave the concrete jungle behind and head to one of the many sandy beaches in the city to cool down and enjoy a different New York Vacation.

New York City summers are the perfect time to visit the city. There are plenty of festivals, live music, outdoor dining, rooftop drinks, and endless events to attend. Summertime is also when many New Yorkers flock outside to frolic in the parks and get away from the heat of their apartments. However, if you’re visiting the concrete jungle during the summer, there might be days when all you can think about is a refreshing swim in the water. Thankfully, New York stretches well past the tall skyscrapers of Manhattan, and there are plenty of beaches surrounding the city that locals and tourists can visit for a day of adventures at the beach. Let us tell you about some of the spots the locals prefer, and you’ll be able to brag about getting a New York tan this summer!

Coney Island

For the ultimate family beach day, look no further than Coney Island and its accompanying boardwalk. The legendary Luna Park has rides for children and young-at-heart adults to enjoy, including the iconic Cyclone roller coaster and the Wonder Wheel. The New York Aquarium is also right on the boardwalk alongside lots of restaurants, and who could forget Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs? All of this while also having access to three miles of sandy beach to relax and spend a sunny day. Getting to Coney Island from The James Hotels is easy; take the D, N, F, or Q to the Brighton Beach station and walk about two minutes to the shore. If you have access to a car while in the city, the drive from the hotel should be just under an hour.

Brighton Beach

If you’re in the mood for a slightly more low-key experience than Coney Island, we suggest Brighton Beach. Known as ‘Little Odessa’ for its surrounding Russian immigrant community, Brighton offers a smaller and more relaxed atmosphere while still being close to all the fun Coney Island offers. Brighton Beach is known for its calm water and wide, sandy beaches, which makes it the perfect place to unwind away from the city and soak up the summer sun. Make sure to arrive early to secure your spot! Subway lines B and Q will take you to Brighton Beach.

Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach — located in the very south of Brooklyn — is one of the most popular beaches in the city. It features an expansive shoreline, ideal for swimming, sunbathing, or simply taking a leisurely stroll at sunset. Manhattan Beach is the ideal destination for a friend road trip — it has handball, volleyball, tennis, and basketball courts located seaside for some friendly competition under the sun. To make your way to Manhattan Beach, from Brighton Beach subway, take the B1 bus to Orient Blvd & Ocean Ave.

The Rockaways

The Rockaways is the largest urban beach in the United States, stretching for miles alongside the Rockaway Peninsula and facing the alluring Atlantic Ocean. This beach is favored by the surfing community in New York City, as it boasts bigger waves and plenty of space to hang out. Make sure to walk or bike alongside the boardwalk and take in the natural beauty of New York State. The Rockaways are made up of several beaches between 3rd Street and 153rd Street, so there’s plenty of space to explore and stretch out. From The James NoMad, you can take the A train (make sure it’s headed to Far Rockaway – Mott Avenue) to Beach 67 Street. Alternatively, you can take one of New York Waterway’s ferries from Wall Street to Rockaway Beach. The ride is about an hour long and passes the Statue of Liberty, Governors Island, under the Verrazano Bridge, beyond Coney Island and the Marine Parkway Bridge, making it an excellent alternative for sightseeing on your way to the beach.

jacob riis beach

You can find Jacob Riis Beach at the southwestern end of the Rockaway Peninsula, between Fort Tilden and Rockaway Beach. This spot, known as People’s Beach, is a haven for the LGBTQ+ community and a livelier place to hang out with friends and family. Jacob Riis includes a boardwalk, an Art Deco bathhouse with exhibits, ball courts, and kayaking opportunities. Food stalls are available, but you’re encouraged to bring a picnic since concession stands are not always guaranteed to be open. The easiest way to reach Jacob Riis is by taking the New York Beach Ferry, a weekend shuttle service between Pier 11 and the Rockaways.

orchard beach

Situated in what was once known as ‘The Riviera of New York City,’ this Bronx beach is a nice option for beach lovers. It includes a promenade, a pavilion with food options, two picnic areas, playgrounds, and basketball, volleyball, and handball courts. Most of the facilities are new additions to the area, so take advantage of all that Orchard Beach has to offer and plan your visit the next time you’re in town. You can take the six train to Pelham Bay Park and easily hop on a Bx12 to City Island Avenue. This beautiful beach is a quick walk from the bus stop.

a day trip to the hamptons

Looking to break away from the city and indulge in a luxurious escape? The James Hotel has partnered with BLADE and Hampton’s Picnic Co. to curate a lavish and unique beach day perfect for a romantic getaway. It begins with a stay in one of our beautifully appointed Jimmy Suites. You’ll wake up to breakfast at Scarpetta’s Café, then take a scenic 40-minute BLADE helicopter flight to East Hampton. Upon arrival, a handpicked location by Hamptons Picnic Co. awaits, with a beach day setup featuring chairs, towels, and a parasol. Enjoy a locally curated three-course picnic lunch and take home two bottles of local rosé from Wölffer Estate as a souvenir.

As the sun sets, the BLADE flight will whisk you back to The James Hotel, just in time to experience Manhattan’s vibrant nightlife. This day trip offers the perfect blend of relaxation, adventure, and indulgence, leaving you with cherished memories of a dreamy summer escape. Don’t miss this opportunity to create lasting moments with your loved one in the idyllic surroundings of East Hampton.

paradise found

There’s so much more to discover in New York than meets the eye. This summer, dare to go beyond the city and usual tourist spots and discover the public beaches and parks that complement the city and make it a one-of-a-kind place to experience. Throughout your beachy vacation in the Big Apple, The James NoMad will be a refreshing oasis in the middle of one of the most vibrant cities in the world. Enjoy access to a sophisticated speakeasy, The Seville, on the lower level of The James, and elevated Italian food at Scarpetta. Find our fully equipped gym on the 3rd floor of the hotel, featuring state-of-the-art equipment for your use, as well as in-room Four Bodies Wellness yoga mats and workouts right on your television. Plus, guests of The James NoMad also receive priority access and a voucher to Exhale MedSpa, a luxury spa and fitness company located just steps away from the hotel.

Find your summer escape in the concrete jungle while staying with us. We can’t wait to welcome you soon!

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