Coney Island Travel Blog› entry 24 of 110 › view all entries
My actual destination in New York was Coney Island, where the amusement park industry began, and home to the Cyclone. I had to pay to leave the city. It was sunset by the time I got there.
Coney Island has seen much better days, and is now a pretty seedy area of New York. I wasn't sad to hear that Astroland finally lost it's lease. There isn't any one major amusement park here, but three ghetto amusement parks side by side.
First, you see the old jump tower of Steeplechase Park, which now has a baseball field next to it, but I didn't get too close to it. The closest I got to it was this large field of rocks with a makeshift beer garden on it. Between that and another rock field was a road with parking meters, where I parked and had to quickly make my way to the Cyclone and back in fear that my car was going to get stolen.
Next to that was Deno's Wonderwheel Park, where the Wonderwheel is located, but I didn't have time for that. That park was also an assortment of old rides and if it wasn't for a big wall between the two, you'd never know that is was different from Astroland, which was also pretty run down. Across the street is the Cyclone, and past that is the New York Aquarium, where it costs $20 to park.
The Cyclone is a registered landmark, but unlike the Giant Dippers of California, this rollercoaster is in the absolute worst shape of the 298 coasters I have ever ridden. Every drop you think 'anuerism! fatal spinal injury!' Seriously, there are either thousands of holes in the track, or the train has square wheels, or both.
It is a national landmark, they get funds to fix it. If Astroland gets bulldozed, I would have no problem seeing this poor ride put out of its misery. Maybe the new owners will take care of it. But until then, it hurt!
After the Cyclone, I stopped at Nathan's hotdogs, but the hotdog line was too long, so I got a chicken burger and took off back to my car, where some homeless guy was waiting for a handout.
I drove off, took a little video from the highway of the city at night and discovered Rye Playland was close by, and got a hotel room in Connecticut