Located in the Southern-most part of Brooklyn is one of New York’s best known attractions, Coney Island. It is the birthplace of the very first Nathan’s Hot Dog stand which was opened up in 1916 by a polish immigrant named Nathan Handwerker. Coney Island is known as more of an Amusement Area rather than an Amusement Park due to the fact that the rides and attractions are all owned and operated by different businesses located separately throughout Coney Island. Rides and attractions are opened seasonally – so check out the website to see what’s open so you can plan your trip accordingly. Other attractions however, are opened year-round such as the Coney Island Museum, open every Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 5pm as well as Coney Island’s beautiful beach and boardwalk. The beach is practically 3 miles long and has recreational activities such as volleyball, handball, basketball, playground areas, and some amusement rides to make sure you have fun in the sun.
The New York Aquarium is a seasonal attraction open during the summer from May 23rd to September 7th. The museum is a fun and exciting way to learn about our oceans and aquatic life. Some of the things you can expect the museum are daily feedings for Sea Lions, Penguins, Sharks, Sea Otters, and Walruses as well as a touch-pool which allows you to feel starfish, horseshoe crabs, and other small creatures of the sea. You can also embark on a 4-D digital movie experience which appeals to the senses by shooting out fragrances, wind, and mist as you learn about the shallow seas. Located very close to the Museum is the Cyclone – the world famous Wooden Coaster, make sure to check it out.
Another seasonal attraction is Deno’s Wonder Wheel Amusement Park which is located on the Boardwalk of Coney Island Beach. It features 25 rides, 2 arcades, live music and entertainment, and even an old-fashion candy shop. One of the most famous rides is “The Wonder Wheel”, opened since 1920. This Ferris-wheel takes you to heights of 150 feet up and holds 144 people at a time. In 1989 “The Wonder Wheel” was officially deemed one of New York City’s landmarks. The Thunderbolt, Super-Shot, Bumper Cars, and the Spook-O-Rama ride are among other things to visit while at Deno’s.
Coney Island holds annual events to look forward to as well such as the Coney Island Circus-Sideshow where you can watch real side-show freaks perform very-extreme magic tricks as well as acts which may be considered gruesome or bizarre in nature. Prepare to see fire-breathing, glass-walking, chainsaw juggling, and so much more! Once every summer you can catch the Mermaid Parade and the Siren Festival which are among other special events held by Coney Island. The Mermaid Parade is the U.S.’s largest art parade and takes place every summer. This parade helps celebrate a forgotten past-time of Coney Island, Mardi-Gras (1903-1954), in hopes of keeping its memory alive. Also held every summer in Coney Island is the weekly burlesque shows; Thursday and Friday of every week features new wild and outrageous acts.
Whether you are traveling by yourself, with friends, or with family and kids – Coney Island is great for people of all ages. There is always something to do, new things to learn, and great experiences to have here. Don’t forget to try a Nathan’s Hot Dog while visiting; it really is one of the highest quality hot dogs in the world. Unfortunately there are no hotels located on the Coney Island premises; however you can find hotels within a close radius of Coney Island at Sheepshead Bay.