Lonely Planet Writer

Parks at New York's famous Coney Island reopen for the summer season

The amusement parks on New York’s famous Coney Island has reopened for the summer season, inviting guests to check out the many attractions in the historic beach neighbourhood.

Coney Island beach promenade, Brooklyn, New York City.
Coney Island beach promenade, Brooklyn, New York City. Image by Sascha Kilmer/Getty Images

The Brooklyn beach is renowned for its retro-vibe, historic rides, concessions, the New York Aquarium, the boardwalk and more.

Home to a number of amusement parks, this year’s festivities kicked off on 9 April with the “Blessing of the Rides”, an annual tradition at Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park where park owners Dennis and Steve Vourderis cut the ribbon on another year of roller coasters, ferris wheels and more.

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This year marked the refurbishment of the nostalgia-inducing Coney Island Cyclone in Luna Park, a historic wooden roller coaster and New York City landmark that is marking its 90th year.

The amusements are open on the weekends until Memorial Day on 29 May, and will be open every day during Spring Break, which runs 10 to 18 April before fully opening for the summer. The famous Coney Island Beach will open to the public on Memorial Day Weekend.


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Coney Island’s history as a centre of amusement parks goes back to the mid-1800s, and while there continues to be historic rides throughout, there are also newer offerings to appeal to thrill-seekers.

Another annual attraction that brings crowds to Coney Island is the Mermaid Parade, which will be held this year on Saturday, 17 June. The event is described as “the nation’s largest art parade” and features incredible elaborate – and often skimpy – marine-inspired costumes.

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