The Best Old-School Boardwalks in America
These boardwalks retain a sort of retro, timeless charm that will take you back in time.
Jenkinson’s Boardwalk (Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey)
One of the most underrated beach towns in America is Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey. It’s home to Jenkinson’s Boardwalk, a mile-long stretch with a retro charm, classic boardwalk treats and old-school fun such like carnival games and mini-golf.
Rehoboth Beach Boardwalk (Rehoboth Beach, Delaware)
Romantic and adventurous Rehoboth Beach has a boardwalk that is a mile long. The area is also home to Funland, an amusement park that has been around since the 1960s.
Hollywood Beach Broadwalk (Hollywood, Florida)
Florida’s Hollywood Beach is an underrated spot with a classic vibe and dates back to the 1920s. Its boardwalk is 2.5 miles long.
Riegelmann Boardwalk (Brooklyn, New York)
Better known as the Coney Island Boardwalk, Riegelmann Boardwalk is one of the most iconic in America. Running along the southern shore of Brooklyn, New York, it’s home to the historic Cyclone roller coaster, the famous Wonder Wheel and the New York Aquarium.
Santa Monica Pier (Santa Monica, California)
Opened in 1909, the Santa Monica Pier can be found at the celebrity-favorite beach in Santa Monica, California. Pacific Park, an amusement park with 12 rides including the world’s only solar-powered Ferris wheel, is located on the pier, which also has an original 1920s carousel, an aquarium and a video arcade, along with restaurants, bars and stores.
Atlantic City Boardwalk (Atlantic City, New Jersey)
Atlantic City, New Jersey’s boardwalk is the first and longest in the world. Garden Pier features the city’s historical museum and an arts center.
Ocean Front Walk (Los Angeles, California)
Los Angeles’ Ocean Front Walk, also known as the Venice Beach Boardwalk, is located in the famous LA neighborhood of Venice that is full of quirky street performers, interesting vendors and colorful murals.
Disney’s BoardWalk (Orlando, Florida)
Disney’s BoardWalk in Orlando, Florida, was specifically intended to take guests back in time with a turn-of-the-century boardwalk vibe modeled after the early days of Coney Island and Atlantic City with midway games, as well as gift shops, fantastic dining and nightlife.
Hampton Beach Boardwalk (Hampton Beach, New Hampshire)
Hampton Beach, New Hampshire, is one of the best coastal towns in America, and a big reason is its boardwalk.
Navy Pier (Chicago, Illinois)
A Chicago landmark, Navy Pier is famous for its Ferris wheel and other rides such as the carousel and the Pepsi Wave Swinger.
Mission Beach Boardwalk (San Diego, California)
A popular San Diego boardwalk, Mission Beach Boardwalk is home to family-friendly and time-warping Belmont Park.
Ocean City Boardwalk (Ocean City, New Jersey)
Located on New Jersey’s Cape May, the Ocean City Boardwalk is truly iconic.
Old Orchard Beach Pier (Old Orchard Beach, Maine)
The Pier at Old Orchard Beach in Maine has been around in one form or another since 1898. The wooden pier stretches 500 feet and has a casino where Frank Sinatra once performed. It’s also the home to Palace Playland, one of the best amusement parks you’ve never heard of.
Wildwood Boardwalk (Wildwood, New Jersey)
Located within the southern tip of New Jersey, Wildwood Boardwalk stretches 2.5 miles and is full of carnival games, food stalls, souvenir shops and tons of rides. Wildwood Boardwalk is home to not one but three amusement park piers and it’s also the venue of many concerts, sporting events and monster truck rallies.
Ocean City Boardwalk (Ocean City, Maryland)
The Ocean City, Maryland, boardwalk has great views of the shoreline from the carousel that dates back to 1902.
Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier (Galveston, Texas)
Feel warmer just looking at this photo of Texas’ Galveston Island, known for being warm even in the winter. It’s also home to a boardwalk packed with rides and Galveston Island Historic Pleasure Pier. See, it has the word historic right in there.
Kemah Boardwalk (Kemah, Texas)
Kemah Boardwalk, located in Kemah, Texas, features classic boardwalk rides like the 65-foot-tall Ferris wheel and double-decker carousel, as well as the speedboat ride Boardwalk Beast.
Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk (Santa Cruz, California)
Santa Cruz Beach claims to have the oldest amusement park in California; it was founded way back in 1907. Two of the 35 rides and attractions here are officially recognized as National Historic Landmarks: the Looff carousel, which was built in 1911, and the 1924 wooden Giant Dipper roller coaster.
Grand Haven Boardwalk (Grand Haven, Michigan)
Grand Haven Boardwalk is a narrow boardwalk stretching 1.5 miles along Michigan’s Grand River. Marinas and charter fishing boats line the boardwalk.
Winnipesaukee Pier (Laconia, New Hampshire)
What says “back in time” more than a pontoon ride from Weirs Beach in Laconia, New Hampshire?
Huron Boardwalk (Saint Ignace, Michigan)
Located in St. Ignace on the edge of Lake Huron, Michigan’s Huron Boardwalk demonstrates its history with museums and signs portraying the area’s industries and people. The history is further displayed with a rudder from a wooden steamer lost in a haunting shipwreck and an original Mackinaw boat.
Long Beach Boardwalk (Long Beach, Washington)
The lovely Pacific Ocean boardwalk of Long Beach, Washington, runs through rolling dunes, stretching half a mile. It’s known for its sunrises and sunsets, as well as whalewatching. The Long Beach Boardwalk is known for the town’s famous International World Kite Festival.
Seaside Heights Boardwalk (Seaside Heights, New Jersey)
Known as the setting for the popular reality show “Jersey Shore,” there’s a lot more to Seaside Heights, New Jersey, than its impressive nightlife. Casino Pier is an amusement park with thrill rides, go-karts and mini-golf, and it’s located across from Breakwater Beach Waterpark.
Virginia Beach Boardwalk (Virginia Beach, Virginia)
Virginia Beach’s boardwalk is 28 feet wide and runs 3 miles for a bike ride, walk or, wait for it, rollerblade through time.
Ontario Beach Park (Rochester, New York)
Located in Rochester, New York, the 39-acre Ontario Beach Park is an underrated park with a lovely pier. The pier is also home to the historic Dentzel Carousel built in 1905.
Pier 60 (Clearwater Beach, Florida)
Much more simple than the typical boardwalk, Pier 60, located on Florida’s Clearwater Beach, stretches out over the water and has amazing views of the beach and its sunsets, celebrated daily with a four-hour festival. It also doesn’t hurt that it’s at one of the best beaches in the world.
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