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Typical nature boardwalk, carrying walkers over wetlands on the Milford Track, New Zealand.

A wooden boardwalk allows passage through a lake, such as this one in National Park Plitvice Lakes, Croatia.
This boardwalk provides a dock in Soomaa National Park, Estonia.
Boardwalks are used in parks and protected areas to reduce negative effects of foot traffic on the environment, such as in Horicon Marsh.
Boardwalk to the Lambi Beach on the Greek island of Kos.
Boardwalks help walkers navigate difficult terrain as at Pyhä-Luosto National Park in Lapland, Finland.
A boardwalk enables those on foot to cross a bog in Estonia.
For the record label, see Boardwalk Records. for the former Las Vegas hotel, see Boardwalk Hotel and Casino.

A boardwalk (board walk, boarded path) is a constructed pedestrian walkway along or overlooking beaches; or as walking paths and trails over bogs and wetlands and above fragile ecosystems, usually built with wood.

Boardwalks along intertidal zones are known as foreshoreways in Australia. A boardwalk along a river is often known as a riverwalk and a boardwalk along an oceanfront is often known as an oceanway. Aside from their obvious pedestrian usage, boardwalks have been used to create commercial districts and enable commerce along waterfronts where conventional streets would have been more expensive because of a beach or other waterfront feature. Although boardwalks can be found around the world, they are especially common along the East Coast of the United States in North America.[citation needed]

Many of the original boardwalks in the United States have developed to be so successful as commercial districts and tourist attractions that the simple wooden pathways have been replaced by esplanades made of concrete, brick or other construction, sometimes with a wooden facade on the surface and sometimes not. Indeed in many parts of the U.S. today the term boardwalk often carries more the connotation of a waterfront, pedestrian, entertainment district than the original meaning of a wooden path.[citation needed] One of the earliest such boardwalks was designed in New Jersey and opened June 26, 1870, in Atlantic City.[1]




Newport Beach, California

Newport Beach's boardwalk is a concrete path running 2.9 miles from 36th Street to between E and F Streets on the Balboa Peninsula. It passes McFadden Square and Newport Pier, and Balboa Pier. The speed limit along the path is 8 MPH, to prevent conflicts among bicyclists, pedestrians, skateboarders and rollerbladers.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Santa Cruz, California

This boardwalk, opened in 1907, is the oldest amusement park in California and the home to two national historic landmarks: the Looff Carousel and the Giant Dipper roller coaster. The Santa Cruz Boardwalk no longer actually has any wooden boardwalks.

Venice Beach, California

This 2.5 kilometer boardwalk has a pedestrian walk, bike path, rollerskater and skateboard ramps, and restaurants. Venice Beach is famous for Muscle Beach, where bodybuilders work out. California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger worked out on Muscle Beach and made Gold's Gym famous in the 1980s.


Bethany Beach, Delaware

Bethany Beach's boardwalk, while not as long as Rehoboth Beach's, connects the summer seaside resort's broad, sandy beach to motels, restaurants, and vacation homes. In 2011, Bethany Beach banned smoking on the beach and boardwalk.

Rehoboth Beach, Delaware

This mile-long long boardwalk connects summer tourists with Rehoboth Beach's main attractions during the summer months, including high-end resorts, numerous shops, arcades, eating establishments and family amusement center. The town's main street, Rehoboth Avenue, intersects with the boardwalk.


The Louisiana Boardwalk in Bossier City, Louisiana.

Bossier City, Louisiana


The boardwalk in Ocean City, Maryland.

Ocean City, Maryland

This three-mile (5 km) long boardwalk is at the heart of downtown Ocean City, Maryland. Located at the eastern end of U.S. Route 50, it supports two amusement parks, Ripley's Believe it or Not, as well as arcades, shops, restaurants, hotels, time-shares, and condominiums.


Sandwich, Massachusetts

This boardwalk does not, strictly speaking, lead along the beach. Instead, it begins in a parking lot and leads through the salt marshes and out to the beach. It was destroyed in 1991 by Hurricane Bob and was then rebuilt through donations made by the townspeople. In turn, family names were carved into the planks of the boardwalk, and it is still used to this day. The boardwalk crosses a creek, where at high tide, visitors can jump off the bridge into the water.

New Hampshire

Hampton Beach, New Hampshire

This boardwalk is largely a tourist attraction. In fact, it is widely used for common shops where tourists can purchase souvenirs and trinkets to remember their trip.

New Jersey

New Jersey is the location of most of the boardwalks in the U.S., with nearly every town and city along the shore having one. The first and longest boardwalk in the world is in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

The boardwalk in Asbury Park, New Jersey.

Asbury Park, New Jersey

Asbury Park's boardwalk is in the process of revitalization and has recently been connected to the neighboring town of Ocean Grove, New Jersey.

The boardwalk in Atlantic City, New Jersey outside the Trump Taj Mahal.
Wildwood, New Jersey boardwalk, from the front of the Boardwalk Chapel.

Atlantic City, New Jersey

The Boardwalk starts at Absecon Inlet and runs along the beach for four miles (six kilometers) to the city limit. An additional one and one half miles (two kilometers) of the Boardwalk extend into Ventnor City. Casino/hotels front the boardwalk, as well as retail stores, restaurants, and amusements. Several piers extend the boardwalk over the Atlantic Ocean. Garden Pier houses the Atlantic City Historical Museum and the Atlantic City Art Center. The four story "Pier at Caesars" entertainment complex opened in July 2006. This boardwalk gained fame due to the board game Monopoly, which was based upon the trading and dealing of real estate in Atlantic City; in the game, Boardwalk is the most expensive property to purchase and develop, but also yields the greatest rent payoffs to its owner. In the fall of 2010 HBO launched the drama series Boardwalk Empire, which is named after and constantly returns to the Atlantic City Boardwalk.

The amusement area in Keansburg, New Jersey houses vintage rides from the 1920s.

Keansburg, New Jersey

Keansburg, New Jersey is regarded locally as a boardwalk town, with one of America's oldest shoreside amusement parks housing vintage rides dating back to the 1920s, but the amusement area fairway is now asphalt.

Ocean City, New Jersey

The 2.5 mile (4 kilometers) boardwalk in Ocean City has classic attractions and many newer additions. The 140-foot (42 m) Ferris Wheel can be seen from miles around, with views of Ocean City and the surrounding communities from the top. Other rides include roller coasters, bumper cars, water rides, and 11 miniature golf courses. Shops sell souvenirs and snacks, such as cotton candy, popcorn, pizza, and ice cream. Other boardwalk activities include enjoying the sunrise with a leisurely walk, a brisk jog, a bike tour, a ride on a surrey cart, or a meal at one of the many ocean front cafes.

Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey

About seven miles (11 km) from Seaside Heights, the Point Pleasant Beach boardwalk (frequently known as Jenkinson's Boardwalk) is similar to the boardwalk found in Seaside Heights, but is a bit more subdued. The promenade extends from the Manasquan Inlet in the northern end of the borough to the border with Bay Head in the south. Right in the middle is the Jenkinson's Amusements/Jenkinson's Boardwalk area brimming with rides, games, carnival food, miniature golf, fun houses, souvenir shops, and Jenkinson's Aquarium.

Seaside Heights, New Jersey

This 1-mile (1.6 km) long promenade is full of game stands, pizzerias, souvenir shops, beach gear stores, arcades and ice cream parlors drawing families, teenagers and adults alike. The Seaside Heights boardwalk is bookended by two 300-foot-long (91 m) piers that feature amusement rides, carousels, log flumes, roller coasters, Ferris wheels and more. One of these piers is the world-famous Casino Pier, home to a 1913 circa merry-go-round, the Niagara Falls log flume and the Jet Star roller coaster. The other is the Funtown Amusement Pier home to the Tower of Fear, Seaside's tallest Ferris wheel and a go-kart track. Across from Casino Pier is the redeveloped Jenkinson's Breakwater Beach waterpark (formerly WaterWorks). Many of the businesses are still family-owned and operated and have been almost as long as the boardwalk has been around.

Wildwood, New Jersey

The 2 mile (3 kilometer) long boardwalk has a total of three amusement piers plus a myriad of other carnival games, souvenir shops, food stands, waterparks, and world-class roller coasters. The Boardwalk started out as a mere 150 feet (45 m). It has actually been moved closer to the ocean twice. Today, the boardwalk stretches from 38 blocks from 16th Ave in North Wildwood to Cresse Ave in Wildwood Crest. The Wildwood Boardwalk is said to have more rides than Disneyland. Kiddie rides include a convoy of airplanes, trucks, dune buggies, boats, and trains. Flying elephants, teacups, bouncing giraffes, mini-Ferris wheels, and a traditional carousel round out the mix. The Boardwalk piers boast several waterparks and four major roller coasters.[not in citation given][2] In 2008-2009 a section of the boardwalk was rebuilt using ipe tropical hardwood, even though the town pledged to use domestic black locust.[3]

Coney Island, New York boardwalk on a foggy night.

New York

Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York

Riegelmann Boardwalk, located along the southern shore of Brooklyn along the Atlantic Ocean, Coney Island is known for the amusement parks along the 2.51 mile boardwalk. Many of its most famous parks no longer exist, but the boardwalk still hosts The Cyclone roller coaster and the Wonder Wheel Ferris wheel, as well as the New York Aquarium. A recent addition to the boardwalk is KeySpan Park, home of the minor-league Brooklyn Cyclones baseball team.

Jones Beach, New York

The 2 mi (3.2 km) long Jones Beach Boardwalk runs along the central section of the 10 mi (16.1 km) Jones Beach State Park, created during the administration of Robert Moses and opened in 1929.[4][5] It is accessible from the mainland via the Meadowbrook State Parkway or the Wantagh State Parkway. Apart from a few amenities such as a two bathhouses and several refreshment stands, the boardwalk is much less commercialized compared with other bordwalks in the region. The historic Boardwalk Restaurant, built in the 1930's and rebuilt in 1966[6] was demolished in 2004 pending redevelopment by Trump Entertainment Resorts.[7] It is expected to open in 2014.[8] The Boardwalk Bandshell, originally adjacent to the restaurant, was moved from the east to the west side of the central mall and still serves as a popular venue for summertime beachside concerts.[6]

Long Beach, New York

Long Beach, nicknamed "The City By the Sea" and once known as "The Riviera of the East", boasts a 2.2-mile (3.5-km) boardwalk east of New York Avenue, which was planned and developed in 1906-1907 by Tammany Hall-connected real estate developer and former New York senator William H. Reynolds. In an effective publicity stunt, Reynolds had a herd of elephants marched in from Coney Island's Dreamland amusement park, ostensibly to help build the boardwalk.[9][10][11][12] Google Map image of the current boardwalk.[13]

Rockaway, Queens, New York

Rockaway boardwalk, 1903

The Rockaway Boardwalk is 5.5 miles long running from Beach 9th St. in Far Rockaway to Beach 126th St. in Rockaway Park at the edge of Belle Harbor.[14] While several unconnected sections were first built at the end of the 19th century, the entire length was completed in the 1930s. Today, a few sections have been rebuilt in concrete. Some sections of the boardwalk such as Edgemere and Arverne offer access to mostly uncrowded beaches. Other sections include playgrounds and bathroom facilities and tend to be very crowded, such as Far Rockaway and especially Rockaway Beach with its many eateries and bars. The sections of Beach 67th to 69th in Arverne and Beach 87th to 91st in Hammels are designated as surfing beaches. The boardwalk and its 170 acres of beaches is maintained by the NYC Parks Department and policed by the NYC Parks Enforcement Patrol. The Rockaway Boardwalk and beaches are notable in that their entire length is accessible to beach-goers by subway.

South Beach, Staten Island, New York

The F.D.R. Boardwalk along South Beach is two and one-half miles long, which is the fourth largest in the world. Visitors enjoy strolling and bicycling throughout the year. From October to May, fishing is also permitted.


Toronto, Ontario, Canada

The boardwalk along Lake Ontario in the Beaches

The Beaches neighbourhood has a boardwalk along its scenic Lake Ontario shoreline. It runs 3 kilometres from Ashbridge's Bay in the west to the R. C. Harris Water Treatment Plant in the east.[unreliable source?][15]

Marsh boardwalk in Point Pelee, Ontario, Canada

South Carolina

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

The 1.2 mile Myrtle Beach Boardwalk, finished in 2010, was recognized later that year by National Geographic as the nations's #3 boardwalk behind the ones at Atlantic City and Coney Island.[16]


Kemah, Texas

The Kemah Boardwalk is a hotel and restaurant destination in Kemah, Texas, USA, which also features a small selection of amusement rides. The main attractions of the 35-acre (140,000 m2) complex, which opened in 2001, are its many restaurants overlooking Galveston Bay, recreational sailing, and rides. The area was developed by Landry's, which owns all of the restaurants on the boardwalk. Activities include shopping and midway games, as well as a miniature train that traverses the entire area. Additional attractions include a 36-foot (11 m) carousel a 65-foot (20 m) Ferris wheel and a new wooden roller coaster.


Virginia Beach, Virginia

Virginia Beach, Virginia's 3-mile (4.8 km) boardwalk features restaurants, entertainment, and many sporting events.[citation needed]

Other examples

Gold Coast Oceanway

Oceanway logo

Gold Coast, Queensland Australia has a 36 km foreshoreway stretching from the Gold Coast Seaway to Point Danger on the Queensland and New South Wales state border known as the Gold Coast Oceanway. The Oceanway has become so popular that extensions are gradually emerging in the neighbouring Tweed Shire. The Logo depicts a family group of pedestrians and a cyclist enjoying a sustainable and healthy journey past green dunes along golden beaches.

An isolated village in rural southwest Alaska.


Eskimo villages of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta, Alaska — Today, 10 feet (3.05 m) wide heavy-duty boardwalks are common in villages throughout this part of Bush Alaska. Tuntutuliak was the first village to receive them in the mid 1990s by way of a government funded program to determine whether they would be a worthwhile investment elsewhere. Before the existence of these boardwalks, a much narrower, lower, and less extensive system of boards and boardwalks served delta villages.[not in citation given] [1]

See also


  1. ^ Today in History: June 26 at the Library of Congress
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Wildwood Opts for Ipe Wood Over Black Locust in Boardwalk Construction". Cape May County Herald. March 17, 2009. Retrieved 2009-03-17. 
  4. ^ "Jones Beach State Park - History". Jones Beach Club. Retrieved 2012-07-22. 
  5. ^ Bruce Lambert (1997-09-28). "One Man's Dream, Blissful Jones Beach Is Like No Other Place". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-07-22. 
  6. ^ a b "Jones Beach Boardwalk Restaurant & Bandshell". Jones Beach Rescue. Retrieved 2012-07-22. 
  7. ^ Robin Finn (2006-09-24). "THE ISLAND; On the Ocean, a Trump Deal". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-07-22. 
  8. ^ Will James (June 29, 2012-06-29). "Trump Lands State Accord On Jones Beach Restaurant". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 2012-07-22. 
  9. ^ Ultimate Rollercoaster®, LLC. "Roller Coaster History: Early 1900's: Coney Island". Retrieved 25 June 2012. 
  10. ^ "Walkabout: William H. Reynolds, conclusion". 
  11. ^ Admin (Saturday, February 4th, 2012). "At Hell’s Gate: The Rise and Fall of Coney Island’s Dreamland". Entertainment Designer. Retrieved 25 June, 2012. 
  12. ^ Edo McCullough (1957). Good Old Coney Island: A Sentimental Journey Into the Past - the Most Rambunctious, Scandalous, Rapscallion, Splendiferous, Pugnacious, Spectacular, Illustrious, Prodigious, Frolicsome Island on Earth. Fordham University Press. p. 198. 
  13. ^ Google Maps. [,-73.670926&cbll=40.584137,-73.670926&photoid=po-2006486&z=15&sa=X&ei=vDnoT4bjBMPf0gHjhNTWCQ&ved=0CB8Q8wEoATAA Boardwalk, Long Beach, NY 11561] (Map).,-73.670926&cbll=40.584137,-73.670926&photoid=po-2006486&z=15&sa=X&ei=vDnoT4bjBMPf0gHjhNTWCQ&ved=0CB8Q8wEoATAA. Retrieved 25 June 2012. 
  14. ^ Heather Cross. "Rockaway Beach & Boardwalk Guide". New York City Travel. Guide. Retrieved 2012-01-21. 
  15. ^
  16. ^ Anderson, Lorena (2010-07-18). "Boardwalk buoys business for Myrtle Beach". The Sun News. Retrieved 2010-07-18. 

External links