Pros and Cons of a Day Trip to Long Beach, Long Island

Pros and Cons of a Day Trip to Long Beach, Long Island

Last Updated on September 16, 2020 by Anisa

I am a beach person, but I haven’t spent much time exploring the beaches around New York City because I prefer warm water.  However, since I haven’t had time to make it to the Caribbean recently I thought I should check out more of the local beaches.

Last summer I went to Sandy Hook, NJ so I wanted to check out one of the beaches in Long Island.  I had heard good things about Long Beach, Long Island.  Since it would be an easy day trip, so we decided to give it a shot.

After, my visit I thought it would be helpful if I shared the pros and cons I experienced.  Overall though, I would recommend doing a day trip to Long Beach Long Island in the summer.

Note: There is a Long Beach Island in New Jersey, which I have not been to yet.

COVID-19 Notice: Long Beach is open.  Please practice social distancing.  Note that the LIRR beach getaway packages are not available for 2020.

Everyone having a great day at Long Beach on Long Island

Everyone having a great day at the beach!

Note: This post contains affiliate links.  Please see disclosure for more information.

About Long Beach Long Island

Long Beach is located on Long Beach Barrier Island, which is off Long Island’s South Shore, about 30 miles to the east of New York City. It’s part of Nassau County and has a population of just more than 30,000.

The city of Long Island takes up the entire north–south span of the barrier island with the Reynolds Channel to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the south. There are two drawbridges, the Long Beach Bridge and the Atlantic Beach Bridge, that connect the barrier island to the mainland of Long Island.

Some street art along the Long Beach boardwalk

Some street art along the Long Beach boardwalk

Pros of Long Beach Long Island

  • It is easy to get to Long Beach from NYC.  The train ride from Penn Station takes about an hour and then it is an easy 10 minute walk from the Long Beach LIRR station to the beach.  On the weekends, the trains run about once an hour.  Get to Penn Station early to allow for time to buy your tickets, so you don’t miss your train like we did!
  • You can save on beach admission if you buy the beach getaway package through the Long Island Railroad– unfortunately, I found this after I went!   An individual round-trip train ticket is $19 on the weekends and admission to the beach is $15, but the package is $23.75 per person.  That saves you $10.25 per person.
  • The beach is very long with beautiful fine sand.  We enjoyed our walk along the beach and it would also be great for running.  We even found some shells.
Some of the shells we found in Long Beach

Some of the shells we found

  • The water is clear and there were plenty of people enjoying the waves.  There are lifeguards and they were definitely watching.  The lifeguards only allowed people to swim in areas close to each lifeguard chair.  When the lifeguards went off duty at the end of the day, they made sure to get everyone out of the water.
  • There are several bars and restaurants on the street by the train station, many had brunch and drink specials.  There was also an Italian Ice place.  I saw carts on the boardwalk selling ice cream, snacks, and drinks.
Bikes you can rent on the Long Beach boardwalk

Bikes you can rent on the Long Beach boardwalk

A couple walking along the boardwalk in Long Beach

A couple walking along the boardwalk

  • We just laid on our towels on the beach but there are chairs and beach umbrellas for rent if you prefer.
  • They had volleyball courts.  I didn’t play but it was fun to watch.

For more ideas of places to visit in the area, check out this post about the places you can’t miss on Long Island.

A game of beach volleyball in Long Beach

A game of beach volleyball

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:  The Ultimate Packing List for the Beach

Cons of Long Beach Long Island

Just a few things to keep in mind if you do decide to visit Long Beach Long Island:

Lots of people in the water In Long Beach

Lots of people in the water

  • The water can be rough.  The lifeguards were very strict.  At one point, I noticed there was a lifeguard standing at the water’s edge in addition to the one in the chair.  We did not see any surfers when we went, but maybe they go earlier?
  • The beach was crowded, but since it is a long beach, you can easily find some space.
A peaceful section of Long Beach

A peaceful section of the beach

Obligatory Selfie in Long Beach

Obligatory Selfie

Things to Do in Long Beach Other Than the Beach

Long Beach is a popular destination in the summer because it has such a lovely beach and boardwalk, but you may be wondering if that’s all Long Beach has to offer.  Here are a few more things to do in Long Beach:

  • Long Beach Ice Arena – This used to be the practice facility for the New York Rangers Hockey Team, but now it is open to the public for ice skating.  Get more information about it here.
  • Long Beach Historical Museum – Artifacts from Long Beach’s history are housed inside a 1909 two-story Craftsman-style house that was one of the original Estates of Long Beach summer residence villas.  They also host a lot of special events.  Get more information here.
  • Shopping – You can find some fantastic boutique shops in Long Beach including Reign, Codfish Cowboy, Ooh La La, and LB Surf.

Where to Stay in Long Beach New York

I think it is easy enough to get to Long Beach that you can visit as a day trip, but if you want to make a beach weekend out of it you can.  There are two hotel options in Long Beach:

  • Long Beach Hotel – This hotel is 250 yards from the beach and boardwalk.  It features two onsite restaurants.  Read reviews on Tripadvisor here or check pricing and availability on Booking here.
  • Allegria Hotel – Stay right on the the boardwalk.  This hotel features a seasonal rooftop pool, the Atlantica restaurant, and the L’onda Lounge.   Read reviews on Tripadvisor here or check pricing and availability on Booking here.

Alternatively, it might be better to go with an Airbnb.  Check out the options here.

Is it Worth Visiting Long Beach Long Island?

Yes! All in all, we enjoyed ourselves and it was a nice relaxing, easy getaway from NYC.  

What is your favorite beach around NYC?  Oh and don’t forget your sunscreen!

-Anisa

Pin For Later

beach in long beach long island with text overlay

Expert Tips for Your Visit to Long Beach NY

  • Save money by purchasing the LIRR Long Beach getaway package, but make sure to get to Penn Station early as there may be a long line to get tickets.  You could also buy in advance at Penn Station but tickets are not available online.
  • There are lots of options for exercising at Long Beach – swimming, biking, running, walking, and volleyball.

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About The Author

Anisa

Anisa is an experienced international traveler with extra pages in her passport and stamps from 41 different countries across 5 continents (and counting). She was born and raised in Texas. After a 13 year stint in NYC, she moved to England to live with her husband.

52 Comments

  1. Sally@Toddlers on Tour

    I can’t believe that you have to pay to go to the beach let alone $15!
    I would love to visit Long Island to see what all the hype is but not sure I would worry about stepping on the sand.

    Reply
    • Anisa & Katherine

      Yeah I was surprised it was so expensive but if you get the package its not bad. Its nice to be able to visit a beach thats easy to get to.

      Reply
  2. Rob+Ann @TravelLatte(.net)

    Having grown up on the west coast, I just can’t wrap my mind around paying to go to the beach. And then having to pony up for a chair and umbrella, too? I like Hawaii’s attitude – the beach belongs to everybody! That said, at least it’s a nice beach! 🙂 -Rob #TheWeeklyPostcard

    Reply
    • Anisa & Katherine

      Yes, its too bad you have to pay but it is a nice and easy summer escape.

      Reply
  3. Garth

    Never thought about day trips when visiting NYC, looks like there’s lots to do. Interesting they charge I’ve never heard of this for going onto a beach!

    Reply
    • Anisa & Katherine

      Yeah there are actually lots of great day trips from NYC. In the summer, beaches. In the fall, the Hudson Valley is really beautiful with the fall foliage.

      Reply
  4. Michelle

    I have never visited the beaches near New York City. The sand looks wonderful and it’s always fun to find sea shells. Thank you for the detailed description on how to get there as I am not accustomed to urban areas. Thank you for sharing your lovely photos!

    Reply
    • Anisa & Katherine

      Michelle – Thanks for your comment. The sand was really nice and it is not too difficult to get to. Makes it a get place for a mini getaway.

      Reply
    • Anisa & Katherine

      Thanks so much Sarah! Come visit sometime!

      Reply
  5. Harmony, Momma To Go

    I live 10 minutes from here, and the cost is the big deterrant. $15 per person means $30 for our family we can go to Pt Lookout or Lido for $10 for the whole car. I do love walking on the boardwalk, or running or biking. Also I am all over this beach in June or Sept before or after they start charging.

    Reply
    • Anisa & Katherine

      Harmony – Yeah it really is too bad they charge so much because the beach is really nice. That is smart to go in June or September, I didn’t think about it being free then.

      Reply

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