One of the most famous cities on the New Jersey Coast, Atlantic City is known for its iconic Boardwalk, sandy beaches and glamorous casinos.
Everyone comes to Atlantic City! A tourist destination since it was founded in the 19th century, the city attracts visitors from all over the world as well as weekenders from New York and Philadelphia.
Atlantic City is a family-oriented town with attractions for everyone. It's a top entertainment spot and big-name stars regularly appear in its hotels and theaters.
You'll find a vast range of activities including swimming, surfing and fishing. Whether you love music and dance or whether you're a history and culture fan, you'll be enchanted by Atlantic City.
Gambling has been a key attraction since it was legalized in the state of New Jersey in 1976. Some of the city’s notable casinos include Caesar’s Atlantic City, The Borgata, Harrah’s and the Golden Nugget.
Atlantic City is spa central and its indoor pools make any season feel like summer. Enjoy a traditional massage or a luxurious facial at one of the Borgata’s two spas or relax under a glass-domed roof by the stunning palm tree fringed indoor pool at Harrah’s.
It's an entertainment capital, and you can expect to see famous names in Atlantic City's leading hotels throughout the year. You’ll also find great local acts at beachside venues like the Landshark Bar & Grill.
Enjoy a snack on the Boardwalk or discover Atlantic City institutions like Dock’s Oyster House or Knife and Fork. Visit in March for Atlantic City Restaurant Week to sample some of the best.
The Jersey Shore is as popular with locals as it is with visitors. Relax in a deck chair while the kids dig in the sand or enjoy a dip in the Atlantic Ocean. It's also a leading surf destination, and those new to the sport can take lessons with NSSA national team members or East Coast champions at Atlantic City Surf & SUP School.
The original inspiration for "Monopoly's" coveted "Boardwalk" property, this may be one of the world's most iconic beachside entertainment zones. Around-the-clock fun awaits, with the ocean in one direction, and bars and clubs in the other. Hit Boardwalk Hall after sundown for all-star concerts, or lose yourself in the vast Caesar's Casino - a staple of the Boardwalk. Don't miss Atlantic City Beach when the sun is back up, and relax the day away before doing it all again.
One of Atlantic City's most upscale resorts is the Borgata, boasting a world-class casino, spa, and theater - not to mention the epic accommodations. The building glimmers in the sun and lights up at night, inviting visitors to indulge 24/7. With views overlooking the marina on one end and the oceanside city on the other, this stopover will have you feeling like a high-roller.
Extending out into the Atlantic Ocean across the famous Boardwalk and Atlantic City Beach, the Steel Pier recreation zone is a highlight for all visitors. A true relic of the 20th century, this all-American pier is covered in amusement park rides from Ferris wheels to mini-coasters. Get your hands on some cotton candy or salt water taffy, and enjoy the sea breeze among the fanfare of lights and sights. The Atlantic City Historical Museum isn't far either.
Overlooking the Absecon Inlet, this lighthouse of the same name is the tallest of its kind in the state of New Jersey. A sight to behold for all visitors, the massive bulb at the top still lights up every night even though the lighthouse was retired for official navigational use in 1933. It now serves as a beacon to vacation goers from near and far, and historical tours are available each day.
This aquarium offers exceptional access to the very depths of our world. With a variety of immersive and hands-on displays, this underwater world brings visitors face to face with exotic creatures from our seas and oceans. The marvelous exhibitions present unique opportunities to visitors - from exploring sharks in the touch tank to learning about the unique ecosystem of the local coastline.
Summer, from March to the end of August is peak season in Atlantic City and you can expect temperatures of 80 – 84F during the day. The pleasant breeze from the ocean offsets the summer humidity. Visit from March to April or from September to late October when the city is less busy to take advantage of lower prices and less crowded attractions. Any time is ideal if you’re a gaming fan and many casinos offer deals and discounts throughout the year.
Some visitors choose to fly into Atlantic City International Airport (ACY) which is 9 miles from the city center. Spirit Airlines offers flights to Atlantic City from various places including Miami, Denver, Chicago and Tampa. From the airport, a bus service operated by NJ Transit can take you to the city center. Taxis and rental cars are also available. Alternatively, you can fly to Philadelphia International Airport (PHL); it’s 60 miles west of the city. Take a train or rent a car for the one-hour drive to Atlantic City.
NJ Transit runs trains to Atlantic City from Philadelphia. A one-way ticket costs $10, and the trip takes 1 hour 30 minutes. When you arrive at Atlantic City Rail Terminal, you’ll find free Jitney shuttles to the city’s casinos. Taxis are also available, or you can board NJ Transit buses at the Atlantic City Bus Terminal just two blocks from the station. Travel from New York City on the service from Penn Station to Trenton which connects with the RiverLINE service to Pennsauken Transportation Center. From there you can take the ongoing Atlantic City Rail Line train. A one-way ticket is $21.
It’s easy to reach Atlantic City by car. If you’re coming from Philadelphia or South Jersey, just take the Atlantic City Expressway toll road to the Marina district, Brigantine or the city center. The Garden State Parkway toll road connects with the Expressway 10 miles from Atlantic City for those driving from New York or Cape May. US Highway 9 is a toll-free, if slightly slower, alternative.
If you prefer to travel by bus, Greyhound offers services to Atlantic City from Washington, DC, Philadelphia, and New York. Expect to pay between $20 and $40 for the round trip depending on your embarkation point.
Since most of Atlantic City’s hotel’s tend to be either large chains or casino/hotel resorts you can expect affordable accommodation and good service, even though décor can be bland. You’ll also find luxury options like The Borgata and Chelsea; Atlantic City is perfect for fabulous vacations and romantic breaks.
Absecon – Atlantic City is built on and around Absecon Island. The Absecon district is the city’s central or downtown area and where you’ll find many of its businesses and shopping malls.
The Boardwalk – The Boardwalk runs for 4 miles along the Atlantic Shore and it’s a great place to relax with the locals. It’s also where five-eighths of the city’s casinos are located.
Pacific Avenue – A block inland from the Boardwalk, Pacific Avenue casinos can be reached easily using the Atlantic City Jitney 24-hour minibus service.
The Marina District – Home to several casinos, the Marina district is where you’ll find Harrah’s Resort, the Borgata and the Golden Nugget.
Ducktown – Historically the Italian/American district, Ducktown runs between Missouri and Texas Avenues. Points of interest include Boardwalk Hall, the Boardwalk Dante Hall Theater and St. Michael’s Roman Catholic Church on Mississippi Avenue.
Hire a rolling chair on the Boardwalk or take a Jitney, a local green minibus, to most of the city’s landmarks – a single fare is $2.25. If you’re venturing a little further from the Boardwalk, NY Transit buses cover the city and suburbs.
You can pick up local taxis outside any casino or at drop-off points at Atlantic City Convention Center, or book by phone. A ride within the city limits should not cost more than $13 plus tip.
If you prefer to drive you can rent a car at the airport or at car rental outlets in the city. The Boardwalk is pedestrianized, but the rest of Atlantic City is easy to navigate. Public transport can be limited, so a car is ideal if you’d like to see local landmarks like Lucy the Elephant in nearby Margate City. The famous sculpture is a National Historic Landmark and was built in 1881 and it’s just a 2-mile drive from the city.
Atlantic City is an affordable destination for visitors, even though it’s slightly more expensive than other New Jersey cities such as Trenton. Expect to pay $25 for a basic meal and $80 for a three-course dinner for two in a mid-range restaurant.
From specialist shops like Steel’s Fudge, the world’s oldest family owned fudge maker, to stylish boutiques and bustling malls, shopping in Atlantic City is a treat. Visit the Pier Shops at Caesar’s for designer brands like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Gucci or Tanger - The WalkOutlets for stores ranging from Bass Pro to Calvin Klein. The Shore Mall in Egg Harbour is also good and stores include Burlington Coat Factory and Boscov’s.
You’ll find plenty of supermarkets and stores where you can pick up basics like food and toiletries. Popular options include Boom and Save-a-Lot.
Whether you feel like a quick snack or a three-course dinner, you’re spoiled for choice in Atlantic City. Boardwalk vendors sell local and traditional favorites like salt water taffy, funnel cakes, hot dogs and cotton candy that can be enjoyed on the beach or while sitting on the boardwalk enjoying the panoramic Atlantic views. Be sure to try sandwiches from White House Subs in Ducktown; the landmark shop has been visited by hundreds of celebrities. See if you can spot the photographs of the Beatles!
Atlantic City’s coastal location means that seafood is a staple. Try Dock’s Oyster House for oysters, lobster, crab and excellent service. If you’re not a seafood fan, local favorite, Tony’s Baltimore Grill on Atlantic Avenue serves great pizza. Or, try surf and turf at Knife and Fork where visitors and locals have dined since 1910.