Most of the 27 million people who visit Atlantic City each year come to gamble. However, if you are one of those looking for entertainment outside of the casinos, there is still plenty to do and see.
Check out the following list for some ideas on where to go:
Lined with beaches, resorts, and five-star restaurants, the Boardwalk is a great place to do some serious people watching. The four-mile stretch, which dates back to 1870, is in walking distance to beaches, where you can surf or bask in the sun. Each night, the Moment’s Factory lights up the Boardwalk Hall every half hour for the Boardwalk Beat. The three-dimensional sound and light show runs for eight and a half minutes.
The third-tallest lighthouse in the nation, the Absecon Lighthouse is a good place from which to view Atlantic City’s skyline. The structure, which was built in 1857, was restored in 2003. The renovation included the creation of a keeper’s dwelling as well as an overhaul of the two-acre site. Be prepared to climb 228 steps to reach the top of the lighthouse. Once there, you can relax and enjoy a 360-degree view of the city.
The lighthouse is open Thursdays through Mondays from 11 am to 4 pm year-round. It only closes for two weeks to observe Christmas and New Year’s. Make sure to arrive no later than half an hour before closing during July and August to ensure you gain admission.
Qua Baths and Spa
For many travelers, a wonderful spa experience can be the highlight of a trip. Caesars Atlantic City is home to Qua Baths and Spa, the ultimate relaxation experience that puts a contemporary spin on Roman baths.
The stoned-walled sanctuary offers a tranquil environment with three pools, 15 treatment rooms, and four facial facilities. Among the services offered are the O2 Body Perfection Treatment and a classic Swedish massage. For a more extravagant experience, try the Qua Signature Dieci Mani. You get to enjoy Roman baths, full-body exfoliation, Swedish and hot-stone massages from four masseuses at once, detoxifying moor mud, a hand and foot treatment, a Shirodhara treatment, a facial, and a 180-minute paraffin treatment. The Dieci Mani finishes with chakra balancing.
Open on weekends from the end of March through mid-June, Steel Pier is an amusement and entertainment hub that extends 1,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean. The pier features traditional rides, like the Ferris wheel and carousel, as well as more daring ones, such as the Freedom Flyer and the Slingshot. The Steel Pier also provides helicopter rides that give you a great bird’s-eye view of the Jersey shore and Atlantic City. Prices range from $49 to $74 and include options for purchasing photos. If you want, you can also customize the experience and build your own tour.
Atlantic City Country Club
Named the top public course in New Jersey by Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, and Golf Week, the Atlantic City Country Club is famous for being the place where the term “birdie” was coined. The 100-year-old championship venue offers well-maintained fairways and deep sand bunkers. It also provides challenges such as salt-water marshes and natural ponds that can only be cleared with a long drive. Depending on the time of year, you can reserve a tee time and a golf cart for as little as $59. Make sure to dress appropriately for the venue; it is a non-metal-spike facility.
Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival
Presented by Caesars Entertainment, the Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival resumes in 2016 following a hiatus in 2015. The annual summertime event has previously welcomed a host of celebrity chefs, ranging from Rocco DiSpirito to Robert Irvine.
In 2016, Gordon Ramsey and Hell’s Kitchen winner LaTasha McCutchen will join Guy Fieri and Steve Martorano to celebrate gastronomy with culinary demonstrations and tastings. As the festival nears, Caesars Entertainment will provide additional information about the event on its Facebook page.
Boogie Nights, located in the Tropicana Casino & Resort, gives you a place to dance the night away. The club pays tribute to the disco era with 1970s- and 1980s-style decor and an illuminated dance floor equipped with a hanging mirror ball. Each evening, you can expect special appearances by celebrity impersonators, like Madonna and Michael Jackson.
Boogie Nights also plans special events, such as glow parties and singles mixers, and it welcomes private parties to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. Call in advance to book one of their many themed rooms.