Getaway Guide: Weekend Guide to Atlantic City, NJ

September 1, 2012 4:00 AM

Atlantic City (Photo credit: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

ac Getaway Guide: Weekend Guide to Atlantic City, NJ

Atlantic City (Photo credit: SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images)

Less than 300 miles away, Atlantic City is a great destination for any luck-wielding, gambling Bostonian. With a wide variety of entertainment options, including casinos and and an open waterfront, Atlantic City offers something for everyone. Even the kids’ll get their kicks with Lucy the elephant and an exciting aquarium.

Getting There
One of the easiest ways to get to Atlantic City from Boston is driving, however, you can also fly or take a bus. Driving: take I-90 west to exit 9/I-84 west. Follow that to exit 20/I-684/White Plains/NYC. Follow the Hutchinson River Parkway south to the Cross County Parkway to Bronx Parkway south, and follow signs for I-95. Follow I-95/New Jersey Turnpike to exit 11 for U.S. 9 to Garden State Parkway south. Exit 38 merges onto Atlantic City Expressway east. Not Driving: the regional airport is conveniently located in Atlantic City, along with access to train and bus services. For more information, visit the Atlantic City Convention and Visitor’s Authority website.
What to Do
The Boardwalk
Atlantic City, NJ

Unlike other casino destinations, Atlantic City has a rich history stemming from its days as a resort town. Its famed boardwalk offers endless adventures stretching for miles. With shops, casinos, restaurants and other attractions, it’s impossible not to go for a long stroll here. If you have small children with you, be sure to visit the Steel Pier, known for its amusement park rides and other attractions.

Lucy the Elephant
9200 Atlantic Ave.
Margate, NJ 08402-2449
(609) 823-6473

Click here for information about admission and pricing.

Lucy is not just an elephant, she is the oldest animal-inspired building in the United States, and she’s designed to run away with the imaginations of children young and old. Upon entering Lucy, visitors may wander throughout her interior to enjoy spectacular views all around. One highlight is the view from the tent at the top. Lucy awaits just a short two-mile drive south of Atlantic City.

Atlantic City Aquarium
800 N. New Hampshire Ave.
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 348-2880

Click here for information about admission and pricing.

If your children have enjoyed visiting the New England Aquarium, they will love a stop at the Atlantic City Aquarium. Don’t miss out on the touch tanks. There, children can interact with and feed sea creatures. Another highlight, the feeding shows, allow visitors to watch attendants feed animals, which is quite an educational experience.

The Pier Shops at Caesars
One Atlantic Ocean
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 345-3100

The Pier Shops occupy four levels on a pier next to Caesar’s casino. The every-hour-on-the-hour water show at this shopping hot spot promises to delight both children and shopaholics alike. If high-end shopping is one your must-do activities, the shops will not disappoint you. Views of the boardwalk, beach and the city abound, so plan on spending hours perusing this area.

Related: Getaway Guide: One-Tank Trip to Lake Winnipesauke

The Borgata
1 Borgata Way
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 317-1000

Click here for reservations and information about pricing.

To stay at a venue offering just about anything within arms reach, choose the Borgata. Top-notch entertainment options are available throughout the year, including shows and concerts. Enjoy fine dining from celeb chefs like Wolfgang Puck and Bobby Flay, and a spa to truly relax you. You will also want to take advantage of the Borgata’s rewards programs, which will pay you back as you continue to visit.

The Chelsea Pub and Inn
8 S. Morris Ave.
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 345-4700

Click here for reservations.

For a unique lodging option during your stay in Atlantic City, consider the Chelsea Pub and Inn, a bed and breakfast only a stones throw away from the boardwalk. Well-behaved pets are allowed, and reservations include a continental breakfast. A 24-hour restaurant and pub is also located onsite. If you don’t want to travel too far to visit a casino, the Tropicana is conveniently located right across the street.

The Pool at Harrah’s Resort
777 Harrah’s Blvd.
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 441-5000

This unique venue offers performances from world class DJs and fist-pumping music all night long. Dance indoors or outdoors, and keep your eyes open for celebrities enjoying a night out on the town. Dress to impress. Visit the website for information about cover charges as they vary depending on performer.

The Irish Pub
164 St. James Place
Atlantic City, NJ 08401
(609) 344-9064

For party-goers looking for a fun, causal and inexpensive spot, The Irish Pub is the perfect place. It will easily remind you of your favorite neighborhood pub with the added bonus of being near the boardwalk. It’s open 24 hours, so visit any time you wish for a late night bite before you head back to your hotel.

Related: Road Trip to Providence Road Island

Cristy is a city dwelling enthusiast, an arts, culture, and technology lover, and an all around curious person. As an examiner, she covers all things Boston. Her work can be found on