Finally the last post from this summer in NYC (you can see previous posts here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here & here)! At the top of our to-do list for our month in Brooklyn was spending a day on Coney Island. Neither Tristan nor I had ever been and we were keen to have a few hours indulging our inner kids. As synonymous with summer as popsicles and fireworks, Coney Island has been well known as the site of amusement parks and a seaside resort since the first half of the 20th century. Years of neglect followed the culmination of the Second World War, but the arrival of the new Luna Park amusement park gave the area fresh life and now hundreds of thousands of people visit every year!
As Coney Island is within New York City’s borders, it’s accessible by several subway lines and makes the perfect day trip for locals and visitors alike. If you are looking to visit, you can plug in this address (1208 Surf Avenue) on your Google Maps. The best time to go to Coney Island is between Easter and Halloween, during which the rides at Luna Park run on the weekends starting Easter weekend until Memorial Day. Once summer officially hits, the rides operate daily through Labor Day. The beach and the boardwalk, however, are open year-round, which also includes attractions such as Nathan’s Famous Hot Dogs and the New York Aquarium.
As soon as we hopped off the subway we headed straight to Nathan’s Famous, the iconic hot dog joint that hosts the hot-dog eating contest every Fourth of July (aka the only sport that Tristan watches). Though Nathan’s is now a chain, this was the original location and it has been delighting customers with its food since 1916! We ordered a couple of hot-dogs, cheesey fries, and corn on the cob and I was honestly surprised at how much I enjoyed the food. Besides the famous hot dogs, you can pick up a corn dog on a stick (perfect for eating while walking the boardwalk), all sorts of loaded fries and ice-cold lemonade. We sat at our table for a little while, watching families, couples, and young and old people alike enjoy their Sunday afternoon. I felt nostalgic for days gone by when a trip to the beach would have been the biggest adventure for the whole family.
Once satisfied with our lunch, we headed to Luna Park, the amusement park, where the iconic rides of the wooden Cyclone roller coaster (which dates to 1927), and the gilded vintage B&B carousell (not a wrong spelling) are located. As there were so many people lining up to be twisted and turned around, we decided against actually going on any of these rides and instead just wandered around, taking photos and observing guys trying to win their ladies teddy-bears. (Tristan did offer, but I decided that I would rather my suitcases be filled up with vintage shoes than an oversized Coney Island bear!)
We did, however, take a ride on Deno’s Wonder Wheel. Built in 1918-1920, the Wonder Wheel opened to NYC’s delight on Memorial Day, 1920. Initially called the “Dip-the-Dip” by its inventor, Charles Hermann, who promised to combine the thrill of a scenic railway, Ferris wheel and Chute-the-Chutes, the Wonder Wheel has since given over 35 million rides and maintained a perfect safety record for its entire history! The wheel has 24 cars, of which 16 are swinging and 8 are stationary. On a bit of an impulse feeling, I decided that I wanted to sit in one of the swinging cars! As the Wheel turns, the swinging cars slide towards the circumference of the wheel and create a thrill that even shocked T. You can see our little screams of delight in this vlog!
We continued strolling along the Coney Island Boardwalk and stopped off at the Coney Art Walls, a place for aerosol and street artists to show off their work. Pieces on display are often bright and colourful in the spirit of Coney amusement park signs and freak show handbills, and they make the perfect Instagram photo background!
This particular day was boiling and I wanted to make sure that I remained cool throughout the day. I pulled out this beautiful vintage dress that I had purchased earlier in the summer at The Left Bank, as I knew that the bright pattern would compliment the quintessential colours of Coney Island. I kept the look sunny and youthful with bright bangles, my thrifted yellow bag, a multi-coloured floppy hat, and my Reebok sneakers (currently on sale!). This was such a fun day and a must-do experience if you find yourself in NYC in the summer!
Photos by Tristan Marsh
Coney Island Vlog