Visiting NYC this summer? Do like the locals: Hit the beach

  • This July 9, 2017 photo shows a beach in the Rockaways, in the Queens borough of New York, on the Atlantic Ocean, with some beach-goers using body boards to ride the waves. A new ferry that travels between Lower Manhattan and the Rockaways has made it easier to get to the beach, which is known for its crashing surf. (AP Photo/Beth J. Harpaz) Beth J. Harpaz

  • This July 4, 2017 photo shows the beach at Coney Island in the Brooklyn borough of New York, with visitors wading in the Atlantic and the sand lined with sunbathers and colorful umbrellas. The outlines of some of Coney Island's amusement park rides can be seen in the distance framed by apartment buildings. Tourists visiting New York City might consider taking a subway to Coney Island to experience a favorite local summertime destination. (AP Photo/Beth J. Harpaz) Beth J. Harpaz

  • This July 9, 2017 photo shows a view of One World Trade and other skyscrapers as seen from a ferry boat leaving Lower Manhattan and heading to Rockaway Beach in the Queens borough of New York. The new ferry is a scenic way to access the Rockaways, a favorite local summertime destination. (AP Photo/Beth J. Harpaz) Beth J. Harpaz

  • FILE - In this July 3, 2015, file photo, visitors to Coney Island use a selfie stick to take a photo with the Wonder Wheel in the background in the Brooklyn borough of New York. The Wonder Wheel is one of Coney Island's best-known attractions, fun for locals and visitors alike. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File) Mary Altaffer

Associated Press
Friday, July 14, 2017

Visiting New York City this summer? Take a break from Times Square, shopping and museums and do like the locals: Hop a train or ferry to the beach.

The beach at Coney Island, at the tip of Brooklyn and reachable by four subway lines from Manhattan, is bordered by a famous strip of amusement park rides.

You can also go by subway to Rockaway Beach, Queens, but a new ferry service now departs for the Rockaways from Wall Street’s Pier 11 on the East River in Lower Manhattan, with one stop in Sunset Park, Brooklyn.

Here are some tips for a beach day in the Big Apple.

Coney Island

Take the D, F, N or Q subway train to the end of the line in Brooklyn ($2.75 each way). Several small amusement parks sit side by side across from the station, with the boardwalk and the Atlantic Ocean just beyond.

The famous Cyclone ride is to your left when you get off the train. It’s a wooden roller coaster that will rattle your bones.

Have a hot dog from Nathan’s and wander down to the water to dip your toes or take a swim.

Just remember: This isn’t Disney World. It’s a place with old-fashioned charm – the seaside park dates to the 19th century – as well as a big dose of urban grit. You may see litter on the beach and on a hot day, smell garbage in the alleys between the rides. Welcome to New York, folks!