10 Things To Do This Summer In Atlantic City

Written By Stephanie Loder on July 8, 2022
Atlantic City Boardwalk Summer

It’s always summertime somewhere. Now through Labor Day weekend in Atlantic City, it’s time to hit the beach, play in the surf or walk the historic Boardwalk.

Besides enjoying NJ gambling, there’s plenty more to do. So there’s no need to limit yourself to just swimming and sitting on the beach.

With that in mind, here is a list of 10 things we think AC visitors will enjoy around AC this summer.

And with a little less than two months until Labor Day weekend, there is plenty of time to enjoy it all.

The places and events listed below are in no particular order.

1. Visit Gardner’s Basin

Sometimes when visiting Atlantic City, you just need to go somewhere that’s quiet.

Gardner’s Basin, 800 North New Hampshire Ave., offers a more subdued trip, away from people walking the Boardwalk or sitting on the beach.

The location on the back bay offers views of Brigantine, as well as Borgata, Harrah’s, and Golden Nugget across from the state marina and Coast Guard station.

Weather permitting, fishing and sightseeing cruises head out through the Inlet throughout the day.

2. TidalWave Music Festival

If you enjoy country music and hanging around the beach and Atlantic Ocean, the TidalWave Festival is a can’t miss event.

It’s part of this summer’s beach concert lineup, with the stage being set up at One Atlantic Ocean (near Bally’s and Caesars).

There are 30 performers scheduled for the three-day event taking place Aug. 12-14. You’ll need to purchase a three-day wristband ($269).

Headliners include Luke Bryan (yes, the “American Idol” judge), Morgan Wallen and Dierks Bentley. Hardy, Riley Green, and Chase Rice are a few of the other performers.

The event is partnering with Rock The Ocean to promote awareness of ocean conservation and raise funds.

3. Take a walking tour of Atlantic City

Want a chance to learn firsthand about Atlantic City history?

The AC Walking Tour Series is coordinated by Stockton University and tours start at 10 a.m. on four consecutive Fridays beginning July 8. Tours are $10 each or $35 for the “4-tour bundle.” Tickets can be purchased online.

The two-hour tours cover between 2 to 3 miles of parks, city streets, and the Boardwalk and are held rain or shine.

4. Stroll the entire length of the Atlantic City Boardwalk or beach

At Christmas, you will reminisce with photos of this summer walk.

The Atlantic City beach and Boardwalk are famous, taking up 5 to 7 miles of the island’s coast – depending on where you start.

“Army of the Dead,” “Ocean’s Eleven” and “Rounders” are just a few of the movies filmed in AC. And Miss America once showed us her shoes during the parades each September.

The Atlantic City beach, which is free, and Boardwalk are what sets the resort apart from Las Vegas

More than 150 years old,  Atlantic City’s world-famous Boardwalk was built in  1870 and was supposed to help hotel owners who wanted to keep beach sand out of their lobbies.

5. Meet your favorite former Eagles, Sixers and Yankees

The 42nd National Sports Collectors Convention is coming to the Atlantic City Convention Center July 27-31.

Besides walking the convention floor, guests can purchase special tickets to get autographs from some all-time great pro athletes.

Former New York Yankee closer Mariano Rivera, Julius Irving and Allen Iverson, two of the greatest Philadelphia 76ers of all time will be there. So will former New Giants Lawrence Taylor and Phil Simms. 

And this is just a small sampling of the list. Autograph prices vary depending on which athletes you want to meet. Check the event website for complete details and times.

6. Climb the Absecon Lighthouse

New Jersey’s tallest lighthouse at Pacific and Rhode Island avenues in Atlantic City offers fun and exercise.

Even Gov. Phil Murphy climbed the 228 steps in the 7-foot tall lighthouse in May to kick off Memorial Day 2022 in Atlantic City.

The lighthouse, built-in 1857,  also is the third tallest in the nation and is more than 150 years old. The lighthouse is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. July through August and stays open until 8 p.m. on Thursdays. Climbing tickets are $5-$10.

7. Get the binoculars ready for the 2022 Atlantic City Airshow

Atlantic City offers the only view from the beach of Thunder Over The Boardwalk. This is the perfect opportunity to
sit at the water’s edge and watch the 2022 Atlantic City Airshow.

And it’s considered one of the biggest Atlantic City summer events. This year’s show will take place Aug. 24 (the tentative start time is 11 a.m.).

For those who have never been, the Air Force Thunderbirds and the army parachute team Golden Knights are returning for this event, which takes place over the Atlantic Ocean.

And for the first time in five years, the Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet ‘Rhino” team will take part.

Complete details, including how to purchase Flightline Club tickets, can be found on the event website.

8. Watch The Around the Island Swim

The 3rd Annual Jim Whelan Open Water Festival,  featuring the 56th Annual Around The Island Swim is taking place Aug. 9 around Absecon Island.

The history of the swim dates to 1953. AC Beach Patrol members, Ed “Dutch” Stetser and Edward Solitare, made a $100 bet to see who could win a swim around Absecon Island.

Today, the top overall finisher goes home with a $2,500 prize.

The event begins at the Atlantic City High School Boat House, 3401 Fairmount Ave.

So you think you have what it takes to swim Absecon Island?

Registration and more information is available via the event website.

9. Observing great Atlantic City views from Steel Pier

When visiting Atlantic City, the views from the Observation Wheel on the historic Steel Pier is about as good as it gets. And we’re guessing you are not going to get a better view than from a gondola on this ride.

And you capture keepsake images from high above the Boardwalk.

Located on the Boardwalk across from Har Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, the attraction opened in 2017.

The wheel is 227 feet tall. And it features 40 temperature-controlled gondolas that can hold six passengers. The Wheel also is illuminated at night with 14,500 lights.

Tickets can be purchased on the Steel Pier website. The cost is $13.50 (plus tax) per rider.

So the next time it’s not a beach day, consider riding the Observation Wheel. We hear it offers “breathless views” of the beach and Atlantic Ocean.

10. Charter the Miss Atlantic City for fishing

Everyone needs a fish story to take home from summer vacation.

Seriously, this is no fluke.

The Miss Atlantic City has been operating for over 20 years, providing a variety of fishing trips in Atlantic City.

The 45-foot custom fishing boat can accommodate 30 guests.

For availability and registration, call 609-926-5353.

Photo by Shutterstock
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Stephanie Loder

Stephanie Loder is a freelance writer for PlayNJ. She provides coverage of New Jersey's Atlantic City casinos while also focusing on the beach, boardwalk, and special gaming events. Prior to writing for PlayNJ, she covered Atlantic City government, breaking news, and casinos for The Press of Atlantic City in Pleasantville, N.J.

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