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Hmmm. Well. Coney Island is a really good place to spend a lot of money without really noticing it. That's a bad thing and goes against our mission of finding cheap things to do. And there is a part of us that wants to recommend you throw caution to the wind and blow all twenty bucks on a ride on the Slingshot, which will throw you up into the sky about the beach in a way designed to make you shriek with delight and terror. Is it worth $20? Yes, absolutely. Please do it. It's a fucking joy. Alternately, though, if you want some money post-ride to grab a beer and a hot dog, go on the Steeplechase. It's evocative of days gone by, when Coney Island had actual horse races and attractions that would never be legal these days. After the Steeplechase, you can stop by Nathan's and indulge in a juicy hot dog that will audibly snap under the pressure of your teeth and crinkly, Nathan fries. Spear them with a fork and feel like Poseidon, the king of Coney Island. But is that a full enough day for you? It should be! Because you can spend a lot of time walking the boardwalk and wading into the ocean, and enjoying the fact that, urban as your setting is, by looking out at the water, you are staring into the Atlantic Ocean, one of nature's most formidable foes. It is the very definition of vast. I mean, whoa. And it's free. That view is free. Be afraid, but in the best possible way.
Luna Park; 1000 Surf Avenue, Coney Island
Nathan's Famous; 1310 Surf Avenue, Coney Island