8 beaches near Brooklyn: Where to go for sun, sand, and surf

Published by: BouncePosted Updated
Beaches near Brooklyn

Many people go to Brooklyn for other experiences rather than to look for a beach. However, there are lots of really lovely beaches near Brooklyn that you can choose to visit when you are in this cool city. If you have never been to an East River beach or to a beach that is close to the big city, then you have been missing out.

Before you pick an amusement park location, a beach with a skate and bike path, or a location where you can get some sun and sip on a drink, you need to be sure that you aren't dragging your luggage with you everywhere. Trust Bounce with your luggage so that you can have a great time at the various really special beaches near Brooklyn.

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Coney Island Beach near Brooklyn

Coney Island Beach

This is a family-friendly beach location that is ideal for those looking for a quiet space to enjoy the sound of the water and the feel of the sand. You can head here for great picnic areas, places to walk in the water, or access to a barbecue to cook up a meal. This is a lovely beach, and Coney Island is well-known all over the world for good reason. There are few places as special in the area around Brooklyn, making this one of the best beaches near Brooklyn.

Coney Island Beach travel distance from Brooklyn

You can get to Coney Island Beach in about a half hour in a car, or you can plan to use public transportation and spend about an hour on the train.

Activity recommendations

The Coney Island Museum is close to the water here, as is the site of the first Nathan's hotdog stand and various other iconic eateries. There is so much more to do in the Coney Island area than just visit the beach. While you might choose to head to Coney Island Beach for sun and sand, you can also choose to head here for food, fun, and adventures.

There is a boardwalk, and there are lots of fun rides to enjoy here. While it can be crowded, there is something so special about Coney Island that you will be so glad that you chose this beach location for your beach day trip.

Rockaway Beach near Brooklyn

Brighton Beach

This part of the city actually has a large Russian population, and you can head here for delicious Russian cuisine and fun shops, as well as a great beach day. Brighton Beach is well-known for its great location and also is soft sand. You can head here to enjoy some fun in the sun to shop at local stores that are locally-owned, or you can opt to enjoy the beach during the day and the nightlife when the sun goes down.

Brighton Beach travel distance from Brooklyn

Just like Coney Island, you can get here to Brighton Beach in about half an hour, or you can spend an hour on the train to arrive at this stop.

Activity recommendations

The nightlife here is really amazing, and many people come to the Brighton Beach area to go clubbing rather than to see the beach. You can do both when you are on vacation. Plan to watch the sun set over the water before wandering to a nightclub, or grab some authentic street vendor food and just hang out until the beach closes.

This area is right by a boardwalk that leaves Brighton Beach and heads to Sixth Street, where all the local eateries are. The Brighton Beach area is linked to all kinds of fun things to see and do, so you really can't go wrong with a visit to this beach location near Brooklyn.

Rockaway Beach

Rockaway Beach offers clean and very soft sand and is located at the southeastern end of Queens. This beach area also has a boardwalk to enjoy if you like to walk near the water and see the sights. There are nearby concession stands to enjoy here as well, and you can lounge on the beach or shop if you are not interested in getting sand between your toes.

Rockaway Beach travel distance from Brooklyn

You can get to Rockaway Beach within half an hour in a car, or you can take the train, and the trip will take about an hour.

Activity recommendations

Renting an umbrella and chairs is possible here. You should head over to a street food vendor and get some snacks first, then settle in to enjoy the sun and the soft breeze. If you like walking near the water, the Rockaway Beach boardwalk is a great place to do that.

Many people come to this beach area to learn to surf, and you can easily sign up for a surfing lesson here even if you didn't plan to enjoy this activity in advance. There are a lot of shops and other things to see and do near the water as well.

Beaches for sunset views near Brooklyn

Pelham Bay Park

There is a lot to do here in this park, and you can enjoy outdoor activities like pickleball or tennis as well as hiking, walking, and enjoying the beach space. Many people bring their dogs here to play, so if you love pets, you will want to come to hang out here to get to interact with some dogs. There are also areas to picnic or barbecue if you are in the mood for these activities.

Pelham Bay Park travel distance from Brooklyn

You will need to plan on an hour-long car ride to this beach area, and it takes about two hours to get here on the train.

Activity recommendations

The shoreline here is 13 miles long, and you can enjoy wandering along the water or even sit down to just enjoy the sun and the surroundings. Most people head here to be more active, however, which means that you can plan on hiking, enjoying walking trails, or playing on playgrounds.

Those who love pickleball will be happy to come here to use the courts, or you might want to take advantage of the nearby golf courses as well.

Manhattan Beach

This is an ideal beach for swimming or sunning yourself, but there are also lots of other cool things to do and see here. Different from Coney Island, Manhattan Beach offers access to lots of outdoor activities like hiking, baseball facilities, and volleyball courts.

Manhattan Beach travel distance from Brooklyn

It will take about an hour to get to this beach whether you are driving or taking the train.

Activity recommendations

This is one of the best beaches in Brooklyn if you love to play sports. You can count on Manhattan Beach offering you access to volleyball, baseball, or handball courts that are usually available to be used. Of all of the beaches in Brooklyn, this is one of the most ideal to bring kids to, as there is so much to do that they will enjoy.

Consider renting an umbrella and chairs to enjoy the sandy beach, or head back up away from the water to get delicious food and to go shopping. There is a lot to do here at this beach area, and you will not regret making the choice to come here for the day.

Best Brooklyn beaches

Orchard Beach

For those who love shopping and food, this is one of the best beaches in Brooklyn. You can head here to enjoy access to shopping and food right on the sand, as well as a promenade. Handball, volleyball, and various other fun sports facilities are also located right here near the water at Orchard Beach.

Orchard Beach travel distance from Brooklyn

This beach is an hour's drive from Brooklyn but about three hours away by train.

Activity recommendations

This beach was originally called the Riviera of New York, and you will see why when you come here. Of the various Brooklyn beaches, this one feels the most like you have left the city behind and have traveled to another location for a holiday. Unlike Coney Island Avenue, there is shopping, food, and more to enjoy right here on the beach.

This beach area is not located on the Atlantic Ocean, but is instead looking into Pelham Bay. You will enjoy access to soft sand, facilities near the water for showering and changing clothes, and sports use areas that are right by the water.

Sandy beaches near Brooklyn

South Beach

South Beach is on Staten Island, and it is one of the two well-known sandy areas in this part of the Brooklyn area. Here the Upper Bay opens up into the Gravesend Bay. There are camping areas near the water here, or you can enjoy access to the Franklin D. Roosevelt boardwalk area. There is also an extensive parkland area nearby for those who love to walk and enjoy green spaces.

South Beach travel distance from Brooklyn

This beach will take you about 40 minutes to drive to. You can also ride the train to get here, and the trip takes about an hour and a half.

Activity recommendations

Many people come here to sunbathe in the shadow of the Verazzano Bridge, but you can also kayak, walk along the boardwalk, or enjoy access to a variety of hiking trails in the nearby park. This is one of the best beaches in Brooklyn if you want to enjoy a variety of different activities all in one location. There are lifeguards on duty here during the months when the beach is open for swimming as well.

This area of Staten Island also offers a senior-specific park area where there are bocce courts, chess sets and tables, and places to sit in the shade. If you want to walk the boardwalk, be sure to check out the Fountain of Dolphins, which is famous on Staten Island.

Best beaches near Brooklyn

Gateway National Recreation Area

Originally known as "Gateway Beach," this area has been rejuvenated recently and has been added to the offerings for beach fun in Staten Island. This is a bit of a hidden gem at this time, but people are beginning to realize that this area is a lot of fun and it is growing more popular. Located by Rockaway Inlet, you can also access Sheepshead Bay nearby or head over to Gerritsen Beach when you are in the area.

Gateway National Recreation Area travel distance from Brooklyn

The train does not come here, so you will need to plan on a 40 minute drive to reach this beach area.

Activity recommendations

Originally, this beach was intended for those who were too poor to head to other beaches near the city. The area deserved a facelift and a pick-me-up, and recently it was heavily remodeled and refreshed to become a really lovely beach spot near Brooklyn. Many people come here to camp, and you can swim, sunbathe, and enjoy access to sports facilities here as well.

There are also places to play your favorite sports, such as pickleball, or you might want to hike and look for the various local seabirds that call the park home. Boating is also offered from this beach location, and you could choose to rent a boat or have someone take you out sailing if you wish.


If you are on a budget in New York, plan to head to one or two of these great beaches to save some money. Also, if you have some more time to spend in the surrounding area during your trip, there are tons of exciting weekend trips from the city that you can embark on that won't cost too much. There are so many things to love about this part of the world that you should not allow your budget or the timing of your trip to make you miss out on all the cool things you can do in Brooklyn.

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