New York betches are pretty deprived by not living near a beach. I mean, as much as we love the crowded pool at Equinox Highline on a Saturday or the nauseatingly Instagrammed scene at Soho house, it’s pretty hard to get to a legit beach during the summer if you’re in New York City. In fact, you probably don’t even know that beaches in an 100-mile radius to the city exist, and that’s like, depressing. It’s time to get to the beach, so whether you’re braving the LIRR or using an ex-hookup for a ride, here’s the ranking of the best beaches near NYC:
1. Fire Island
Fire Island is always packed with Long Island girls whose moms labeled their socks for the weekend, and gay guys just trying to get away from all the breeders for a sec. Aside for the Wildfox-dressed crowd, Fire Island is always a sick time. First of all, the towns there are adorable, and life is super quaint and low-key. Think of it as the Hamptons, but with less traffic and without the Tracy Anderson lookalike on every block. The beach itself is really nice too, so you can spend all day laying out and then get drinks when you get bored. FYI, everyone rides bikes instead of cars, so let’s just hope those SoulCycle classes can be applied to the roads.
2. Main Beach, Easthampton
Let’s be real. As much as we can shit on the botox-infused, blogger-filled vibes in the Hamptons, we all know there’s a reason every person living above 66th street flocks there every summer. Easthampton is probably the best beach and beach town in New York, so try to get there at some point this summer. Montauk is our town of choice, but if you’ve never been to Gurney’s on Fourth of July, you may be a bit overwhelmed. In any case, just wear all white, pretend you know people. Pack enough tequila and you should be fine.
3. Shelter Island
People tend to get Shelter Island confused with Fire Island, but the scene is surprisingly pretty different. The beach is great, but the vibe is a little less beachy, if you’re into that sort of thing. Shelter Island is perfect for a day trip or if you’re looking for a weekend to get out of bed before 10AM. People there love outdoor shit like kayaking and paddleboarding, and it’s not just for the Snapstory. So, if that’s your idea of fun, go for it, but if you’re looking to get drunker than Scott Disick on vacation, it may not be your scene.
4. Brighton Beach
Brighton Beach is located deep in Brooklyn, but don’t let its location stop you from going. It’s less touristy than other beaches that are driving distance from the city, and the crowd is much more European, so you’re probably not bumping into random girls you recognize in Kappa Gamma tanks. This is probably because the neighborhood itself is a huge Russian community, but the beach is low-key gorgeous, so it’s perfect for when you want to just chill without thinking you’ll run into someone every three minutes.
5. Manhattan Beach
If you’re looking for a simple beach to drive to on a Sunday and make your guy friends barbecue while you take pics of your Sangria, Manhattan Beach is a good option. It’s not as glam as some of the more resort beach towns that are a farther drive, but what do you expect when it’s this close to the city? The point is, Manhattan Beach isn’t exactly a beach town with $24 margaritas and poolside Fountainebleu DJ, but the beach is solid and it’s pretty chill on the weekends.
6. Coney Island Beach
If the idea of spending your weekend eating hot dogs and going on an ancient-looking roller coaster called Cyclone, maybe don’t go to Coney Island- but if you’ve never been, it’s not as bad as it sounds. A lot of people don’t realize that the beach at Coney Island is actually really nice, and it could be a good time if you want to get ice cream and chill on the boardwalk with friends. I mean, every New Yorker needs to go to Coney Island at least once in their lifetime. It’s like going to the MET. You don’t have to spend more than five minutes there, but you have to at least go to say you’ve been, right?