How to Get to Rockaway Beach by Ferry: A Guide

Rockaway Beach is a beautiful oceanfront neighborhood in Queens, New York. One of the best ways to get there from Manhattan is by taking a ferry ride. In fact, it is one of the best things about Rockaway Beach. The ferry is an affordable, convenient, and scenic way to enjoy the views of the city skyline while making your way to the beach.

To get to Rockaway Beach by ferry, you can take the NYC Ferry’s Rockaway route. The ferry departs from Pier 11/Wall Street and makes a stop in Brooklyn before crossing over to the Rockaways. The ferry ride takes a little under an hour, and you can enjoy a full bar and food options while on board. Plus, the ferry offers stunning views of the Statue of Liberty, the Verrazano Bridge, and Coney Island.

Once you arrive in Rockaway Beach, there are plenty of things to do and see. You can visit the beach and enjoy the sun, sand, and surf. There are also several beachfront concessions where you can rent chairs, umbrellas, and even surfboards. Additionally, you can explore the boardwalk and check out the local shops, restaurants, and bars. Overall, taking the ferry to Rockaway Beach is an excellent way to spend a day outside of the city and experience the beauty of New York’s coastline.

Planning your trip to Rockaway Beach

If you’re considering visiting Rockaway Beach, taking the ferry can be a great option. Here are some things to consider when planning your trip:

Ferry schedule and fees

First, you’ll want to check the Rockaway ferry schedule and fares. The ferry runs from Pier 11/Wall Street in Manhattan to Rockaway Beach on both weekdays and weekends. However, the schedule varies between weekdays and weekends.

It operates on a first-come, first-served basis, and tickets can be purchased online or at the ticket booth. The ferry ride takes approximately one hour and costs $4.00 each way. Discounted fares are available for senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and participants in the Fair Fares NYC program.

What to bring

Once you’ve secured your ferry tickets, it’s time to start packing for your trip to Rockaway Beach. Be sure to bring sunscreen, towels, and appropriate beachwear. If you’re bringing snacks or beverages, keep in mind that alcohol is not permitted on the beach.

Transportation and parking

If you’re driving to the ferry terminal, parking can be a challenge in lower Manhattan. Consider taking public transportation or a taxi to the terminal. Once you arrive at Rockaway Beach, transportation options include walking or biking to your destination, taking a bus, or hailing a taxi.

Popular activities

Rockaway Beach offers a variety of activities for visitors. Some popular options include surfing, swimming, and sunbathing on the beach. If you’re interested in shopping or dining, there are several options along Beach 116th Street.


Finally, keep the weather in mind when planning your trip to Rockaway Beach. The beach can be crowded on hot summer days, so consider visiting during the early morning or late afternoon. Thunderstorms can also occur during the summer, so be sure to check the forecast before heading out.

Taking the ferry to Rockaway Beach can be an enjoyable and convenient way to spend a summer day. By checking the ferry schedule and fees, packing appropriately, considering transportation and parking options, exploring popular activities, and keeping the weather in mind, you can plan a successful trip to Rockaway Beach.

Getting to the ferry terminal

To get to Rockaway Beach by ferry, you will first need to make your way to the NYC Ferry terminal. The ferry departs from Pier 11/Wall Street in Manhattan, with a stop at Brooklyn Army Terminal/Sunset Park, before reaching its final destination in Rockaway Beach. Here are some helpful tips for getting to the ferry terminal.

The Wall Street/Pier 11 ferry terminal for the Rockaway Ferry route

Public transportation

The ferry terminal is easily accessible via public transportation. You can take the subway to the Wall Street station (2, 3, 4, 5, J, or Z trains) or the Broad Street station (J or Z trains), both of which are a short walk from the terminal. You can also take the M15-SBS or M55 bus, which both stop directly in front of the ferry terminal.

Taxi or rideshare

If you prefer not to take public transportation, you can also take a taxi or rideshare service to the ferry terminal. Simply plug in the address, 89 South St, New York, NY 10038, into your preferred app, and your driver will drop you off right at the terminal.

Bike or walk

For those who prefer to bike or walk, the ferry terminal is conveniently located near several bike lanes and pedestrian paths. The East River Greenway connects Lower Manhattan to the ferry terminal, while the Brooklyn Greenway connects Brooklyn to the Sunset Park ferry stop. There are also several Citi Bike stations near the terminal.

Driving or parking

While driving to the ferry terminal may not be the most convenient option, there are several parking garages nearby for those who choose to drive. Prices vary by location and time, so it is best to research and reserve parking in advance. Keep in mind that traffic can be heavy in Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn during peak hours.

Getting to the ferry terminal is easy and convenient, no matter your preferred mode of transportation. With several options to choose from, you can easily make your way to Rockaway Beach and start enjoying all the sun, sand, and surf that this popular destination has to offer.

Purchasing ferry tickets

Getting to Rockaway Beach by ferry is an affordable and convenient option for those looking to escape the busy streets of New York City. Before embarking on your journey, it is essential to purchase your ferry tickets, which can be done conveniently online or in person.


Purchasing ferry tickets online is a hassle-free way to secure your trip to Rockaway Beach. The NYC Ferry app for iOS and Android and website are user-friendly and allow you to purchase tickets 24/7. Please note that tickets purchased through the website can only be redeemed through the app, however.


If you prefer to purchase your ferry tickets in person, you can do so at ticket vending machines located at each of NYC Ferry’s terminals and landings. It is also recommended to arrive at the ferry terminal with ample time to purchase your tickets and board the ferry because they will not wait for you.

Purchasing ferry tickets to Rockaway Beach can be done easily and conveniently online or in person. Whether you choose to buy your tickets ahead of time or on the day of your trip, be sure to bring your boarding pass with you and arrive at the ferry terminal with ample time to board.

Boarding the ferry

Boarding the ferry to Rockaway Beach is a straightforward process, but knowing what to expect can make your trip much smoother. Here is what you need to know before you board the ferry.

Getting to the ferry terminal

The Rockaway Beach Ferry departs from the Wall Street/Pier 11 Terminal in downtown Manhattan. You can get there by subway or bus. The closest subway stations are Wall Street (2,3) and South Ferry (1). The M15 Select Bus Service also stops at the Pier 11 stop. If you are driving, there is limited parking available near the ferry terminal.

Ticket purchase

You can purchase your ferry tickets online or at the terminal using a credit or debit card. The fare is $4.00 each way unless eligible for a discount fare. If you purchase your ticket online, you will need to show your electronic ticket or QR code at the gate before boarding.

Security check

Before boarding the ferry, you will need to pass through a security check, similar to those at airports. You will need to remove any metal objects from your pockets and place them in a bin. Your bags will also need to be screened. It is recommended that you arrive at least 30 minutes before departure to allow enough time for the security check.

Boarding the ferry

Once you have passed through security, you will be directed to the waiting area. Boarding typically begins around 10-15 minutes before departure. Follow the signs and line up behind your designated gate. The ferry crew will help you find your seat once onboard.

Boarding the ferry to Rockaway Beach is a simple process, but be sure to plan ahead and arrive at least 30 minutes before departure. Remember to purchase your ticket before boarding, and be ready to pass through security before boarding the ferry. Keep in mind that the schedule may change, so double-check the current timetable before setting out on your journey. Enjoy the beautiful scenery and fun activities that Rockaway Beach has to offer!

Onboard the Ferry: What to Expect

Once you board the ferry on your journey to Rockaway Beach, you’ll experience a smooth and comfortable ride. Here is what you can expect onboard the ferry:

  • Comfortable seating: The ferry has comfortable seating options that are perfect for relaxing as you take in the scenic views. You can choose to sit indoor or outdoor, depending on your preference. The climate-controlled indoor seating area is perfect if you prefer a cooler ride, while the outdoor seating area allows you to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air.
  • Food and beverages: The ferry has a snack bar to purchase various food and drinks during your journey. Outside food or beverages is not allowed on board.
  • Entertainment: While the scenic views of the ocean and skyline are entertaining, the ferry also has TVs showing news channels and other programs. If you’re traveling with kids, they might enjoy the children’s play area onboard the ferry.
  • Bathrooms: The ferry has clean and well-maintained bathrooms for your convenience. You won’t have to worry about finding a restroom during your journey.
  • Accessibility: The ferry is wheelchair accessible, and the crew is always willing to assist passengers who may need help boarding or disembarking.
  • Safety: The ferry has modern safety equipment and trained crew members to ensure passengers’ safety during the journey. Life jackets are available on board, and the crew will give clear instructions on what to do in case of an emergency.

Overall, riding the ferry to Rockaway Beach is a pleasant and comfortable experience. By choosing to take the ferry, you’ll avoid the hassle of navigating through traffic and finding parking at the beach. Plus, you’ll get to enjoy stunning views of the New York Harbor.

Arriving at Rockaway Beach

After a scenic ferry ride filled with picturesque views of the New York City skyline, you will arrive at Rockaway Beach. The ferry drops you off at Beach 108th Street, where the beautiful sandy shores and lively beach town atmosphere will immediately greet you.

Rockaway Beach

Here’s what you need to know when arriving at Rockaway Beach.

Beach access

As you step off the ferry, you will have direct beach access, with Beach 108th Street being steps away from the ferry dock. You can rent beach chairs, umbrellas, or towels from local vendors or bring your own equipment. The beach is open to the public and is free to access.

Restaurants and shops

Upon arrival, you will also find a variety of restaurants, cafes, and shops to explore. Grab a bite to eat or indulge in some shopping before heading to the beach.

Public restrooms and showers

Public restrooms and showers are available at various locations along the beach, so you can clean up after a long day of swimming and sunbathing.

Beach regulations

Be sure to follow all beach regulations and guidelines during your visit. This includes the prohibition of smoking and drinking on the beach, as well as leaving no trash behind.


Lifeguards are typically on duty from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend between the hours of 10 am to 6 pm. Always swim in designated areas and follow the instructions of the lifeguards for your safety.

Getting around

Getting around Rockaway Beach is easy with the free shuttle bus service that runs along the beach from Beach 116th Street to Beach 17th Street. You can also rent bikes or take a stroll along the boardwalk for a scenic route.

Overall, Rockaway Beach is the perfect destination for a beach day getaway, with its easy accessibility and a variety of amenities.

Exploring Rockaway Beach

Rockaway Beach offers visitors a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life. After getting off at the beach from the ferry, there is so much to do and see. Here are some activities that I would highly recommend.

Sunbathing and swimming

Rockaway Beach is the perfect place to relax, catch some sun and take a swim in the Atlantic Ocean. The beach has more than 5 miles of sand, and with the ocean waves, it creates a mesmerizing atmosphere.


Rockaway Beach is widely known as one of the best surfing spots in New York City. With a variety of breaks for all skill levels, it is perfect for beginners and advanced surfers alike.

Food and drink

For food lovers, Rockaway Beach offers a wide variety of options, from seafood to pizza. Don’t forget to try the famous “Rockaway Taco” and fresh local seafood. After a day of swimming and surfing, grab a drink at one of the beachside bars and enjoy the sunset over the ocean.

Beach volleyball

For those looking for sports activities, the beach offers volleyball courts on the sand. Gather a group of friends, have some fun, and work up a sweat in the sun.


Rockaway Beach has a dedicated bike path that runs along the beach, making it an ideal place to take a scenic bike ride. You can rent a bike from one of the many bike rental shops near the beach and enjoy the view.

Rockaway Beach is a perfect destination for someone looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life, relax and have some fun. Whether you want to swim, surf, play beach volleyball, or just take a scenic bike ride with your friends, there is something for everyone at Rockaway Beach.

Rockaway Beach amenities and services

Along with the stunning views and sandy shores, Rockaway Beach offers a variety of amenities and services for a comfortable and enjoyable beach day experience. Here are some of the facilities and services available at the beach:


There are several restrooms located throughout the beach, making it easy for visitors to take a break from the sun and sand. These restrooms are generally well-maintained and offer both standard and ADA-compliant facilities.


After a long day at the beach, there’s nothing like a refreshing shower to wash off the salt and sand. Rockaway Beach provides free showers for visitors in its main facilities at 94th and 116th streets.

Food and beverages

There are plenty of dining options available near the beach, including several food trucks, snack bars, and restaurants. Visitors can enjoy classic beach fare like hot dogs, burgers, ice cream, and more. Additionally, there are several drinking fountains throughout the beach to help visitors stay hydrated.

Equipment rentals

For those who want a more active day at the beach, equipment rentals are available. Visitors can rent beach chairs, umbrellas, bicycles, skateboards, and even surfboards from vendors located along the boardwalk.

Beach rules and regulations

To ensure everyone’s safety and enjoyment, Rockaway Beach has a set of rules and regulations that visitors need to follow. Some of these rules include no alcohol, no smoking, no glass containers, and no littering. Visitors should also be aware of any warnings or advisories posted by the beach regarding swimming conditions.

Rockaway Beach provides a wide range of amenities and services to make visitors feel comfortable and safe throughout their beach day experience. However, visitors should always be mindful of their personal belongings, stay alert, and adhere to rules and regulations to ensure a fun and memorable day at the beach.

Alternative transportation options to Rockaway Beach

While taking the ferry is the most popular way to get to Rockaway Beach, there are a few alternative transportation options you might want to consider.


One of the most convenient ways to reach Rockaway Beach is by taking the bus. There are several bus routes that stop near the beach, including the Q22, Q35, and Q53. These buses run regularly, and the fare is affordable. However, traveling by bus may take longer than the ferry, and you may experience traffic delays during peak hours.


Another transportation option is to take the subway. The A train runs from Manhattan to Rockaway Park-Beach 116th Street station, which is just a short walk from the beach. The fare is the same as the bus, and you can use your MetroCard to pay. However, be aware that it may take longer to reach the beach by subway, and the station can be crowded during the summer months.


If you enjoy cycling, consider renting a bike to explore Rockaway Beach. It’s a great way to enjoy the scenery, and you can take advantage of the bike path that runs along the boardwalk. There are several bike rental shops in the area, so you won’t have any trouble finding a rental. However, keep in mind that biking to Rockaway Beach may take longer than other transportation options, and you’ll need to be comfortable cycling on busy city streets.


If you prefer to drive, there are several parking lots near Rockaway Beach. However, parking can be expensive and may be difficult to find during peak season. Additionally, traffic can be heavy during peak hours, which may make driving less convenient.

Transportation OptionProsCons
BusAffordable, Regular serviceCan be slow during peak hours
SubwayAffordable, Direct routeThe station may be crowded; possible delays
BikeEnjoyable, Scenic routeSlower than other options
CarConvenient, Direct accessExpensive parking, Heavy traffic
Summary of alternative transportation options to Rockaway Beach

While taking the ferry is the most popular way to reach Rockaway Beach, there are several alternative transportation options to consider. Whether you prefer to take the bus, subway, bike, or car, each option has its own advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to choose the transportation option that works best for you based on your budget, travel time, and personal preferences.


In conclusion, taking the ferry to Rockaway Beach is a convenient, affordable, and enjoyable way to visit this beautiful destination. From the stunning ocean views to the vibrant local culture, there are plenty of reasons to explore this unique part of New York City.

Here are some key takeaways from this article about how to get to Rockaway Beach by ferry:

  • The ferry is convenient for those coming from Manhattan or Brooklyn, with multiple departure points and various schedules.
  • The fare is affordable, with different pricing options for adults, children, and seniors.
  • The ferry ride offers breathtaking views of the New York City skyline, the Statue of Liberty, and other landmarks.
  • Once you arrive at Rockaway Beach, there are plenty of things to do, from surfing and sunbathing to shopping and dining.
  • Whether you’re a local looking for a fun day trip or a tourist visiting New York City for the first time, the ferry to Rockaway Beach is an excellent choice.

Overall, I highly recommend taking the ferry to Rockaway Beach to experience all that this destination has to offer. With its scenic views, lively atmosphere, and numerous attractions, it’s no wonder that so many people flock to this part of Queens every year. So why not plan your next trip to Rockaway Beach today?