Thursday, September 1, 2011

A Day at the Beach

Yesterday myself and a couple of friends took a sneaky mid-week trip to the beach.  It was my first time at a New York beach since my arrival here and I was really looking forward to seeing what it was like.

We decided to go to Rockaway beach, which is a peninsula in the Queens borough.  We took the A train from Columbus Circle to 'Broad Channel', where we changed to the 'Shuttle' which took us to the beach.  There are numerous beach stops and we got off at the 116 beach station as we had heard it was fairly quiet.    It takes about 90 minutes in total, but next time I would probably stay on the A train to 'Far Rockaway' and see what the beach was like there to save time waiting for the shuttle.

It was a short walk from the station to the beach, which was very quiet so we found a spot easily.  It was hard to believe I was still in New York as I laid in the sun listening to the ocean.

For lunch we took a walk along the boardwalk and ate in a great place called 'Caracus Arepa Bar'.  It serves homemade Venezuelan food which is delicious.  I had a Pabellon Arepas which consists of shredded beef, white cheese, black beans and fried plantains in a cornflour roll-yummy!  Check out their website at at http://caracasarepabar.com/rockaway.php for more information.

After lunch we walked a bit further down the boardwalk to about 90th Street, which was much busier and had the added entertainment of surfers!  We had a little paddle in the sea, which was freezing but really cooled me down.  We spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying the beach before heading back to the city.

I thought Rockaway would be touristy, like most beach areas, but it was very residential with lots of homes on the seafront rather than hotels and B&B's.  There weren't that many places open to eat, but I think that was because of the recent storm and the fact it was mid-week.  I would imagine that it gets much busier at the weekends though, making it harder to access the facilities.

I really enjoyed my day at Rockaway beach and hope to go again before it gets too cold.  It's an easy journey and a nice break from city life, well worth a visit!

For more information about Rockaway beach visit http://www.nycgovparks.org/parks/rockawaybeach.

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