Heather Colache, Director of Tourism
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Arts and Culture / Outdoor Recreation / Tours and More
Day 1 Afternoon: See and Be Seen
Songs have been written about it. Movies have been filmed about it. Legends have been made on it. Since its inception in the 1800s, the world-famous Atlantic City Boardwalk has been the epicenter of entertainment and people-watching in Atlantic City.
Stroll the wooden way and enjoy your favorite boardwalk foods. You’ll find the entrance to Steel Pier, extending 1,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean featuring 25 kiddie and extreme rides. A seemingly endless array of restaurants, retail shops, casinos and unique attractions make it impossible to be bored on the World Famous Boardwalk. From annual marathons, Ironman 70.3, the Jersey Surfside Festival – Volleyball Tournament and other competitions to the one-and-only Miss America Parade, the Boardwalk will have everyone yelling more than “Show us your shoes!”
Just in case the weather has a different plan, you can always step inside your favorite casino or perhaps you’ll be fortunate enough to catch a matinee at the IMAX Theater, located at The Quarter at Tropicana Casino & Resort. At The Quarter you will be transported to another place and time for the afternoon. Featuring large format films in both 2D and 3D, IMAX Theater features the latest Hollywood blockbusters, major concerts and sporting events. You can even plan your own private party for your family and friends.
Day 1 Evening: Celebrity Dining & Entertainment
After a fun-filled day of Atlantic City adventures, you have just built up your appetite and dinner is on your mind. As a pop culture devotee, you’re probably hungry for more than just great food. Luckily, Atlantic City is increasingly becoming known for its thriving culinary scene with some of the top chefs in the industry, including Bobby Flay, Guy Fieri and Gordon Ramsay opening restaurants here alongside other nationally acclaimed locales such as The Palm, Cuba Libre, and Buddakan, among many others. Narrowing the list down for your first dinner in town may be a little trickier than you think.
After dinner, Boardwalk Hall is the place to find the superstars from the world of entertainment. Acts such as the Beatles and Rolling Stones to Lady Gaga and The Weeknd, have played to a roaring crowds in the events arena that has stood in the center of Atlantic City for decades. You’ll find more jaw dropping entertainment in any of numerous casino showrooms. When the sun sets on the beautiful skyline of Atlantic City the fun has only just begun. Comedy Clubs, showrooms, nightclubs, lounges, whatever your taste or budget, your night has endless possibilities!
Day 2 Morning: Shopping or Spa Nirvana
Celebrated as one of the best shopping destinations on the East Coast, Atlantic City offers upscale retailers, brand-name discount outlets, unique boutiques and everything in between. At Atlantic City’s Tanger Outlets The Walk, you can spend the day bagging bargains from more than 100 retail outlets like Michael Kors, Coach, Kenneth Cole, H&M and DKNY.
The Pier Shops at Caesars deliver an upscale shopping experience with designer stores such as Louis Vuitton, Apple, Tiffany & Co., and Swarovski. The Pier Shops are also known for some of the city’s most renowned dining, dine in at one of Steven Starr’s Restaurants, Buddakan or The Continental.
High-energy restaurants, exciting entertainment, and an incredible array of shops come together at The Quarter at Tropicana. This 200,000 sq ft retail center brings the lively streets of Old Havana to Atlantic City. Through a sprawling-three story streetscape and shopping experiences that include Time After Time, Swarovski and the Zephyr Gallery you can gain the full experience of Havana. On the world-famous Atlantic City Boardwalk, shoppers will find a variety of souvenir stores, specialty shops and purveyors of salt-water taffy, a hallmark treat of the city.
If you prefer salt scrubs to shoe sales, spend an indulgent morning at one of Atlantic City’s world-class spas. From inviting spaces modeled after Roman baths to the modern day masterpieces, Atlantic City is home to some of the East Coast’s most exceptional spa experiences.
Day 2 Afternoon: Take your pick of beauty queens, oddities or the Jersey Devil
The attractions in Atlantic City are known to be unique, diverse, and yes, even a little odd. If you’re enchanted by the coveted Miss America crown, don’t miss the Miss America Rose Walk, a collection of bronze plaques featuring Miss America quotes embedded in the sidewalk along Michigan Avenue. The focal point of the Rose Walk is a bronze statue of Bert Parks, host of the Miss America competition from 1955 to 1980. Visitors can take advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunity by posing under the crown in the statue’s outstretched hands as a motion sensor triggers the playing of the pageant’s traditional theme song, “There She Is, Miss America” through an enhanced digital sound system.
Located on the Boardwalk, Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Museum is a fascinating look into the world of the bizarre and unusual. Experience their two unique attractions, including the collection of strange and bizarre exhibits from around the world, and the maze challenge filled with laser beams, just like the movies!
Also on the Boardwalk you’ll find Haunted Tales. A ghostly adventure where you should expect the unexpected. Listen to the tales of the Jersey Devil and NJ pirates who still haunt the Jersey Shore in the haunted animated feature. Then, for the brave of heart, take on the coffin ride and experience the sights, sounds and smells of being buried alive. Only a few are courageous enough to make it through the entire ride!
Day 1 Afternoon: All Aboard for Adventure
Did you know Atlantic City is on an island? There are boatloads of oceangoing adventures where you can earn your sea legs. Hop aboard the Cruisin’ One, the flagship boat of Atlantic City Cruises located in Historic Gardner’s Basin, for dolphin watching, sightseeing, or an easy-breezy happy hour cruise. Longing to see some sea life? Climb aboard the Cape May Whale Watcher in nearby Cape May for a fast and fun trip out to the feeding grounds of dolphins and whales.
Day 1 Evening: SEA Yourself Having a Great Time!
After your adventure on the seas, you’ll be ready to sample the catch of the day. From Atlantic City to the surrounding towns, you’ll find an abundance of fresh seafood including Dock’s Oyster House, open for nearly 120 years blending the classic oyster bar feel with upscale dining and maritime touches.
Day 2 Morning: Bike the Boards
Let’s ride! No visit to Atlantic City is complete without an early morning bike ride on the world-famous Boardwalk. You will find several family-friendly and affordable bike rental shops ready to outfit you for a grand two-wheeled time as you check out Atlantic City’s sites and attractions.
Day 2 Afternoon: Don't Let Your Afternoon be a Bogie
Want to work on your swing? There are 30 golf courses within 30 miles of Atlantic City. From dunes to fairways, sand traps to obstacles, there are plenty of places to play and a course just waiting to be tackled.
For those who prefer a more natural take on the great outdoors, there are a number of parks featuring scenic trails, bird watching and wildlife in the region. You’ll discover hiking trails and a nature center with a visit to the Atlantic County Park at Lake Lenape in Mays Landing. Bass River State Forest features camping, swimming, boating and fishing and many more activities the whole family can enjoy. In nearby Hammonton, Wharton State Forest offers up a picnic area, canoeing and kayaking, hiking trails and campsites, fishing and the historic Batsto Village.
A great vacation doesn’t have to be an expensive vacation! Atlantic City has an abundance of free activities starting with our world-famous beach. There are no beach tags or access fees required for a day at the Atlantic City beach. Enjoy the sand between your toes and the sun on your face without emptying the piggy bank. Stroll the Atlantic City Boardwalk and enjoy the best place to people watch.
The free fun continues with the Atlantic City Airshow. This summer spectacle takes place yearly and features flybys and acrobatics by civilian pilots and military professional. All the action takes place in the sky above Atlantic City’s beach and coastline, and the best part of the show is the $0 ticket price. That’s not all either! Check out the rest of the fun free activities that Atlantic City has to offer.
Day 1 Evening:
You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg when you go out to dinner in Atlantic City. There is a restaurant for every taste and budget, from the family-friendly chains we all know and love to the Boardwalk food lining the great wooden way; featuring easy-on-the-wallet favorites like pizza, corn dogs, funnel cake, and gyros. Finish off your evening with the lightshow at Boardwalk Hall. This free 3D display on the building’s façade features a combined effect of video, lighting and sound that has won awards for its innovation and spectacle.
Day 2 Morning: Learn Something Important
Start your day amid the pathways, plants, flowers and Gingko trees of the Civil Rights Garden. This amazing garden features 11 granite columns and sculptures with inscriptions related to the history, events and people of the Civil Rights movement. Located on the Boardwalk by Brighton Park, the New Jersey Korean War Memorial features a thoughtful tribute to the men and women lost during the Korean War and the dedicated service they provided. During the summer season, take a tour of New Jersey’s first commercial wind farm, at the ACUA located on Route 30 in Atlantic City. No appointment is necessary to tour, however if you may certainly schedule a private group tour of the facilities throughout the year.
Day 2 Afternoon: Go Historical
End your stay in Atlantic City with a little culture. The Atlantic City Public Library not only contains some of the best authors in the world, but also features free rotating exhibits of regional and national artists. Explore the history of Lucy the Elephant and the Absecon Lighthouse. Lucy, the six story high historical Landmark, is located in Margate, New Jersey. Children and families are sure to enjoy visiting the only elephant in the world “you can walk through and come out alive!” New Jersey’s tallest Lighthouse and third in the country, the Absecon Lighthouse, is located in Atlantic City standing 171 feet tall.
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Morning: There is nothing better than a morning stroll on the world-famous historic Atlantic City Boardwalk. It’s also the first Boardwalk, built in 1870 to help keep sand from being tracked into hotels. Not to mention it was recently rated one of the best beach boardwalks in the nation!
Also just off the Boardwalk is the New Jersey State Korean War Memorial, located in Brighton Park where Park Place meets the Boardwalk. It features a 12-foot high statue of "The Mourning Soldier" clutching dog tags. A group of soldiers "under fire" emerges through a sheet of water just to his left. The back wall of the memorial, beneath an eternal flame, is engraved with the names of the 822 New Jersians who were killed or are still missing in action.
Just past Historic Boardwalk Hall near Florida Avenue and the Boardwalk is the Boardwalk Empire façade display featuring a store front exhibit with images from HBO’s "Boardwalk Empire" television show. It’s the perfect place for a photo op. You can also enjoy a life size Monopoly game display on the Boardwalk at Dennis Courtyard in front of Bally’s Atlantic City.
Every Wednesday morning at 10 AM, The Historic Boardwalk Hall gives a free behind the scenes tour of the World’s Largest Pipe Organ followed by a recital at noon. This two hour tour gives an extremely detailed history and guided tour though the area of the building that are normally closed to the public. Available year-round, come learn the full history of the Boardwalk Hall Pipe Organ that was built between 1929 and 1932.
Afternoon: Located on Pacific Avenue and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Boulevard is the Civil Rights Garden. It’s a one-of-a-kind tribute to the Civil Rights movement. Eleven black African Granite columns are etched with quotes from the most famous Americans. The central column features an upraised hand and a large bronze bell over a reflecting pool.
Located in nearby Margate, what was once known as South Atlantic City, Lucy the Elephant is one piece of history you should not miss. Now over a hundred years old, Lucy the Elephant was originally built to lure real estate investors to the shore. Since then she has served as a restaurant, a tavern and even a house. She was restored in the 1970s and moved to her current location at Washington and Atlantic Avenues in Margate, where she has resided ever since as a museum. You can climb to the "howdah" on Lucy’s back for a panoramic view of the ocean, beach and surrounding area. Open seasonally.
Evening: There are many long-established restaurants in Atlantic City including The Knife and Fork Inn, a 1912 landmark, formerly a speakeasy during prohibition. Steaks, lobsters and chops are some highlights of the menu! Looking for something a little more casual? Everyone from Frank Sinatra to George Clooney have eaten at White House Sub Shop, opened in October 1946 it has become world famous for quality-made New Jersey subs. Angelo’s Fairmount Tavern is as popular for its homemade wine as for its pasta that’s as good as mamma used to make.
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If your idea of relaxing is a nice five-mile jog, three-mile swim or meditating with 100 crunches on a hot day, then Atlantic City is the place for you. Check out these sample group travel plans for some of our outdoor highlights!
Day 1 Morning: For some of us, the day doesn’t begin without our morning workout. The Boardwalk is the perfect place to flex those muscles and work up a sweat. From 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. (12 p.m. during the winter) bicycling is the way to go on the Atlantic City Boardwalk. It may not be the Tour de France, but with more than four miles of boards to ride, it certainly can get the job done. The Boardwalk is also where joggers go to get in their run, and they come from far and wide. It has become the location of many marathons and yearly races.
Day 1 Afternoon: It may be a sunbather’s paradise and one of the top East Coast beaches, but the Atlantic City beach is also where you’ll find plenty of athletes and competitive opportunities. Have a ball with a game of handball or volleyball, there are even several volleyball tournaments that take place throughout the summer. The beautiful Atlantic Ocean offers an awesome opportunity to catch some waves, learn to surf, or even practice your breaststroke. And for those runners who’ve caught the barefoot running bug, can you think of a better place to get some sand between your toes?
Day 2 Afternoon: Fore! Come on, you know you can fit in a game, especially with more than 30 golf courses within 30 miles of Atlantic City. In fact, the area is fast becoming a new golf mecca, with high-quality courses covering the breadth of golfing capabilities, from novice to pro. Many of our courses are championship-caliber, designed by some of the top course consultants in the country. If you’re looking for diversity, it lives at the heart of our golf world – ocean courses and bayside links, pine-bordered fairways and pristine greens, challenging bunkers and wind-blown sand dunes.
Day 2 Evening: From Fishheads (food trucks) and Back Bay Ale House in Historic Gardner’s Basin, which feature casual bay-side dining to the Chart House at Golden Nugget Atlantic City, dining in style in Atlantic City’s Marina District, there are a plethora of options to choose from. The Boardwalk has numerous places you can stop and get a bite to eat and people watch all at the same time – Bungalow Beach Bar which has a cool, hip beach-vibe. Another great casual seaside spot to grab a bite is Wonder Bar, overlooking the water.
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Morning: Gardner's Basin, located on New Hampshire Avenue and the bay, is the place to catch cruises and fishing excursions. Hop aboard Cruisin’ 1 for the Morning Skyline cruise, which provides a tour of Atlantic City's ever-changing skyline and calm back bays. Marine Mammal Adventure cruises spot dolphins in summer and includes commentary from an onboard marine naturalist. You can also see the sights in a different way by taking to the sky parasailing.
The "Highroller" also departs from Gardner's Basin for back bay fishing on a 50-foot pontoon boat for a calm-water experience where "Nobody Gets Seasick." There are two trips daily, and private charters are available.
Afternoon: Thrill seekers will definitely want to stop off at Central Pier. Feed your need for speed with Nascar go-carts and hit the gas on this raceway over the Atlantic Ocean. Or, instead of speeding up you can load up and take a crack at "Shoot the Geek" paintball.
Isn’t it time you learned to surf? The AC Surf School teaches young and young at heart at S. Raleigh Avenue in Atlantic City. Then, show off your surfing skills at Crystal Beach at New Hampshire Avenue, Delaware Avenue Beach and Downtown Beach right there at Raleigh Avenue. Kayaking and windsurfing enthusiasts can bring their equipment down to Jackson Avenue beach and spend hours out on the water.
Evening: Enjoy a bite to eat on the Boardwalk. Whether you want to walk while you eat famous Boardwalk food like pizza, corndogs or funnel cake, or enjoy a relaxing sit-down meal at any of the restaurants, you’ll find something to suit your taste. Then, head over to The Quarter at Tropicana and take in a movie experience with the only IMAX Theater in Atlantic City. The theater is equipped to show 2D and 3D movies as well as the latest Hollywood event.
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