Spring Breakers (On a Budget)

Selena, Ashley, and Vanessa would do if they were broke

212 To My City | Mareah Younes | March 13, 2016

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So you’re spending your Spring Break in Manhattan. Great choice, I mean you are on an island after all. But I get it, maybe you were hoping to go to Miami or Cabo or somewhere with blue water, soft sand, and sunny skies.

Let me try and give you that… a little closer to home.

Option 1: Long Beach, Long Island
Long Beach may seem like an obvious choice, but don’t let that deter you. Not only is the beach itself 3.5 miles long (you’re bound to find a nice spot to set up camp somewhere), but it also boasts a 2 mile long boardwalk. Long Island offers surfing, fishing, paddle boarding, and more great water activities. Not to mention, Long Island has two cuisine claims to fame: Italian Food, and of course, Long Island Iced Teas. Who could be disappointed with such wonderful choices? You’ll also have plenty of other options: sushi, plenty of delis, diners, classic beachside eateries and some upscale spots.
For the 21+ crowd, Long Island is a top producer of wine, so you’ll find plenty of vineyards and wineries.
PLUS… If you’re not ready to go now, here’s when you should definitely go: April 17-24th… Long Island Restaurant Week, which will have 3-course meals for the set price of *drumroll* $27.95. So yeah, get a three course meal from a nice restaurant for approximately two meal swipes. Can I get a YES?
Long Island Beach: Like the Hamptons… for people who can’t afford the Hamptons 😉
Transport: LIRR to Long Beach, est. time is 1 hr, 30 mins
Option 2: Rockaway Beach, Queens
“Chewin’ at a rhythm on my bubble gum
The sun is out, I want some
It’s not hard, not far to reach
We can hitch a ride to Rockaway Beach” — The Ramones
Yes, this great location’s claim to fame is the song, Rockaway Beach. Here’s why it’s special: It’s the only legal surfing spot in New York City. If you have a solid cash flow this month, you can book a group surf lesson from localsurfschool.com for about $80 per person. After you burn all those calories in the water, stop at a grocery store in the area and pick up some ground beef or veggie patties or what have you and try out a public grill! Or… use up some more calories on some of the baseball fields, skate parks, basketball courts, volleyball courts, or roller hockey arenas in the area. And if you don’t feel like having a group cook-out, check out Pico, a local favorite Mexican restaurant so you can get a taste of that Cabo deliciousness your friends are touting on their snapchats.
As an added bonus, Andrew VanWyngarden (lead singer of MGMT) has a house in Rockaway Beach… so you never know when he might make an appearance. 😉
Transport: Take the L train and transfer to the A, est. time is 1 hr.
Option 3: Coney Island
Believe it or not, Coney Island isn’t all about teens from the 50s going on dates and laughing while eating cotton candy. It can be your perfect spring break spot. Coney Island has about 3 miles of beaches and of course it has an incredibly famous boardwalk. Brave the horrifying, Thunderbolt roller coaster, try out the iconic corn dog, or retrace the footsteps of Ellis and Tony from the Oscar nominated film, Brooklyn (highly recommend if you haven’t seen it yet). At Coney Island, you’ll also find beach volleyball and basketball courts, and an aquarium. In addition to your classic carnival food, you should try out Coney Shack, a super cheap, super amazing fusion spot . Their menu features “Vietnamese Beef Short Rib” tacos, the “Chico Dog,” and the “Spicy Casa” quesadilla.
Transport: You can take the N and Q, est. time is 1 hr.
Option 4: The Jersey Shore
The home of the meatball, Snooki. Pack your leopard bikinis and your oversized sunglasses and get ready to get down, and fist pump it up. While The Shore took a hit post Sandy, the one thing it never let the hurricane destroy was its love of a good party.  While you’re there make sure to check out Beachcomber Bar and Restaurant home of the famous Snooki punch, if you want to eat like the D-list celebrities this place is famous for try their sushi and buffalo chicken salad. For the 21+ crowd, head over to Club Karma at 401 Boulevard open Thursdays through Sundays, where season three of The Jersey Shore came to an end, and more importantly where Roger asked JWoww to go steady, a landmark if I ever knew one. Get ready to GTL, grab some friends, and stick that fist high in the air and pump it proud for spring break 2016.