Deno’s Wonder Wheel
The pink-and-mint-green Deno’s Wonder Wheel dates back all the way to 1920. It is the best place to survey Coney Island from up high.
The most famous of the amusement parks on Coney Island, Luna Park, opened in 1903. A dream world with live camels and elephants, it's...
New York Aquarium
This fun, kid-friendly aquarium offers an opportunity to peek at an ocean’s worth of creatures. The sea lion show is the big draw, which...
Ruby's Bar & Grill
The oldest and only dive bar on the Coney Island boardwalk is an institution: Ruby’s Bar & Grill has been around since 1934 and has...
The hot dog was invented in Coney Island in 1867 – which means that eating a frankfurter is practically obligatory here. The top choice:...
Surf Ave & Boardwalk · interesting places nearby
Coney Island information
About 50 minutes by subway from Midtown, this popular beach neighborhood makes for a great day trip. The wide sandy beach of Coney Island has retained its nostalgic, kitschy and slightly sleazy charms, wood-plank boardwalk and famous 1927 Cyclone roller coaster amid a modern amusement-park area. The New York Aquarium is a big hit with kids, as is taking in an early evening baseball game at KeySpan Park, the waterfront stadium for the minor league Brooklyn Cyclones.
The area traces its amusement-park roots to the mid-1800s, when inhabitants of the increasingly industrialized city began to seek relief from their sweltering tenements in summer. By the late 19th century, the area was a rough-and-tumble party spot dubbed ‘Sodom by the Sea.’ In the early 1900s, however, family amusements began to materialize. The most famous, Luna Park, opened in 1903 – a dream world with live camels and elephants, illuminated by more than a million bulbs. Today, it is still possible to ride the Wonder Wheel (opened in 1920) and the clackety Cyclone roller coaster (1927). The area was a bit of a ghost town in the ’80s, but it has experienced a resurgence in recent years, drawing New Yorkers who come to chow on hot dogs, catch a sideshow, and dress up like punk mermaids at the annual Mermaid Parade. It ain’t Disney – but it isn’t meant to be.