Atlantic City definitely has much more to offer than beauty queens, crazy gamblers or party hoppers. Atlantic City is located 127 miles southwest of Manhattan in Southern New Jersey – basically a two hour drive south of Manhattan. It certainly is a very popular trip from New York – for both, locals and visitors. Below I put together some Atlantic City travel tips you might wanna consider when planning your getaway.
1. Public Transportation from New York City to Atlantic City
To travel from New York City to Atlantic City, NJ there are several options, but I mostly prefer to go by bus, especially since I know all about the horrible traffic in and outsife of Manhattan. For me personally, way too stressful – I’d rather relax, read a good book or watch some TV episodes on my iPad to really get into the spirit.
Bus service from New York City to Atlantic City is an easy, affordable (about 35 bucks per Person) option for visitors. Trips take about two to two-and-a-half hours, but can be longer depending on traffic. Greyhound‘s service departs from within Port Authority Bus Terminal, and offers drop-off at a number of different Atlantic City casinos in addition to the Atlantic City bus station. If you disembark at a casino, round-trip riders often get a “free play” voucher to use at the casino. Return tickets are open-ended and can be used to get back to NYC when you like rather than on a specific bus.
Of course, for those who are up for an adventure or rather feel like partying, you could also take a limo or helicopter ;-)
2. My favorite hotels in Altantic City
I personally prefer lots of comfort, high quality service, ocean view, excellent food and amenities, wellness treatments and great shopping options. Am I spoiled? No, not really – but every once in a while I like to give myself a little treat :-) Besides, if you book in advance and compare prices on booking.com and other travel websites, you might find some really great deals for 50-100bucks per night at one of the 5-star luxury hotels.
My family and I mostly end up at the Caesars Atlantic City, directly at the Boardwalk. Caesars founder Jay Sarno believed that every one of his guests should be treated as a Caesar and you’ll get treatment fit for an emperor at the iconic Caesars Atlantic City Hotel and Casino. Alright you have to be prepared that some of the rooms and facilites are ageing, but the service, the amazing integrated shopping mall as well as the ocean view are so worth it – especially when travelling with your family.
Other five star luxury hotels in Atlantic City I can recommend:
Borgata Hotel & Casino Spa (my favorite when travelling alone, with your bf or bffs): From the splendidly appointed bathrooms to the gorgeous views outside, you’ll be surrounded by elegance and comfort from the moment you set foot inside the hotel.
Golden Nugget (an awesome alternative to the Borgata and it’s said to offer the best casino action)
Trump Taj Mahal (an alternative to Caesars, but also be prepared for some ageing rooms and facilites)
3. Shopping in Atlantic City
Especially for New Yorkers, Atlantic City is a shopping paradise – we can all go nuts ’cause it’s TAX FREE and you’ll find some major shopping discounts – especially during mid season sales, spring break, Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Black Monday. If you for example plan a shopping trip to New York, consider a day-trip to Atlantic City, ’cause the deals down there are so worth it.
My personal recommendation: Tanger Outlets and The Piershop at Caesars! At Tangler Outlets they offer discount shopping at brand name factory outlet stores. It is a 109-store open-air outlet mall in Atlantic City, New Jersey and the only outlet mall in Atlantic County and South Jersey. The mall opened in August 2003 and spans 3 city blocks, featuring a unique layout in outlet mall construction. Check your credit card limit before hitting the mall :-)
Another breathtaking destination awaits you at the edge of the ocean on Atlantic City’s famous boardwalk. Discover The Pier Shops at Caesars and experience a whole new level of world-class shopping, incredible dining and premiere nightlife. Explore an amazing collection of shops, offering fine fashions from the world over. Discover Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Michael Kors & Tommy Bahama.
Tempt your palate at The Pier Shops at Caesars delicious array of renowned restaurants, including Phillips Seafood, Buddakan, The Continental and Souzai Sushi and Sake. Indulge in only the freshest seafood, unique culinary creations, Atlantic City’s best sushi and decadent desserts. Find sumptuous choices to satisfy every craving and enjoy it all along the sparkling Atlantic Ocean.
And you won’t want to miss The Water Show, an interactive water, light and sound spectacular in the towering atrium at the water’s edge. Every hour, on the hour.
Alright, to be honest – you need at least a two-day-shopping trip to Atlantic City ;-)
4. Luxury Spas in Atlantic City
In Atlantic City you’ll find some luxurious havens with pools, steam rooms and indulgent treatments. My two favorites are:
Bask Spa at Revel: Exhale Mind Body Spa, which has 18 locations across the country and one in Turks and Caicos in the Caribbean, is behind Revel’s sprawling health and relaxation complex. While there are separate whirlpool baths and steam rooms for each gender, men and women can mingle in the 3,000-square-foot contemporary take on a classical bathhouse, equipped with hydrotherapy pools and a healing salt room. If Exhale’s signature body-blitzing Core Fusion and yoga classes sound like too much effort, let someone else do the work. Book a massage, facial or a results-driven therapy, such as the Acu-Organ Detox ($165); the spa claims that it releases toxins, improves organ function and boosts energy through a combination of acupuncture and abdominal massage.
Qua Baths & Spa at Caesars: A unique spa experience awaits you at Caesars Qua Baths and Spa in Atlantic City. Qua Baths and Spa is a luxurious retreat that taps into the natural, healing powers of water to bring you a one-of-a-kind experience. Bathed in natural light, accented by smooth stone flooring and dark woods, Qua is the ideal atmosphere for relaxed “Social Spa-ing” as well as individual experiences. This tranquil environment uses the natural properties of water to soothe away stress and tension from the every day. Our Signature Roman Rituals are at the heart of the Qua experience, bringing the traditions of the glorious baths of ancient Rome to modern times. Our Roman Baths consist of three distinct pools varying in both temperature and size and are included with any spa treatment.
5. Sandy Beach in Atlantic City
Atlantic City is home to the top beaches in New Jersey–and they won’t cost you a dime. Enjoy Atlantic City surfing, fishing, volleyball and much more.Life’s a beach…and Atlantic City’s clean, wide beaches offer a variety of fun-in-the-sand activities this summer. Atlantic City beaches are free, too – no beach badges needed. So grab your towel and sunscreen and head out for a day – or night – full of fun activities such as surfing, sunbathing, volleyball, fishing and more.
There’s more to a day on Atlantic City beaches than swimming and sunbathing. If you’re ready for something more grab some gear and enjoy a few of these activities on the best beaches in New Jersey. Or stop by one of the beach bars during the season.
Surfing is permitted on three designated Atlantic City surfing beaches: Crystal Beach at New Hampshire Ave.; Delaware Ave. Beach; and Downtown Beach at Raleigh Ave. Lifeguards are not on duty at the surfing beaches, and surfers should not surf alone in Atlantic City. Surfing Lessons are available.
Kayaking & Windsurfing
Both permitted at the Jackson Ave. beach. No lifeguards are provided at Jackson Ave. This is a no bathing zone designated for Kayaking & Windsurfing only. There are no rentals at this location so you must bring your own equipment.
Nets are available at several Atlantic City hotels for their patrons’ enjoyment where informal pick-up games form regularly.
Boogie Boards and Body Surfing
are permitted on any bathing beach when conditions permit. Please note that all boogie boards must have a leash.
Fishing is permitted on the jetties along the Oriental/Maine Ave. Boardwalk and in the inlet off of the Boardwalk. No fishing license is required for salt-water fishing in these areas. Atlantic City fishing is not permitted on the bathing beaches when lifeguards are on duty (10am – 6pm).
Permitted on the beach on Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day only. Grills must be charcoal briquettes; no gas grills or open flames are permitted.
Group Activities and Parties
Permits are required from the City of Atlantic City.
Allowed on the beach at any time. Beach chair rentals are available at several locations along the Boardwalk. Sunnyside Up Beach Rental, Inc. has locations at:
- Pennsylvania Ave. and the Boardwalk (near Resorts Atlantic City)
- South Carolina Ave. and the Boardwalk (near Resorts Atlantic City)
- Bally’s Bikini Beach Bar (near Bally’s Atlantic City)
- Park Place and the Boardwalk (near Bally’s Atlantic City)
Permitted on the Boardwalk between 6:30 am and 10am daily. Bicycle rentals are available from B&K Bicycle Rentals, Inc., (609) 344-8008, with locations at:
- North Carolina and the Boardwalk at the base of the Boardwalk ramp (near Resorts Atlantic City.)
- Iowa Ave. and the Boardwalk (near Tropicana Casino and Resort)
So, if you are visiting the East Coast in the USA and want to get a taste of the Atlantic City casinos, outlet shops and sandy beach, consider spending a day visiting this popular South Jersey destination.
photo credentials: V’s World (also special thanks to my brother Kai), Atlantic City Convention & Visitors Authority