Atlantic City – your guide to the Las Vegas of the east coast
Atlantic City has always lived life in the shadow of Las Vegas. Not literally – they are, after all, about 2,500 miles apart. However, it’s always had that “Vegas lite” reputation. There’s no simple yes/no answer to whether that’s fair, or indeed to whether it’s necessarily a bad thing. What we can say is Atlantic City is worth a visit in its own right, so let’s find out more.
LV has The Strip, AC has The Boardwalk. It’s four miles long and the focus is on family fun, so you’ll find entertainment for all ages. The Boardwalk has been attracting tourists for more than 150 years, and many of the attractions, such as the carnival-style rides and the old fashioned taffy stands, have been practically unchanged for generations. These stand shoulder to shoulder with more modern innovations like escape rooms. There’s definitely something for everyone.
And that includes the gamblers! Like Vegas, Atlantic City is famous for various types of entertainment, but first and foremost, for its casinos. One area where the two cities differ is that there are nine casinos in Atlantic City and over 60 in Las Vegas. But how many do you really need? As for the games, you’ll find the same NJ slots and table games that you can play at the state’s online casinos. The casinos themselves are not as enormous as the MGM Grand or Mandalay Bay, but they don’t need to be. The Hard Rock, which used to be the Trump Taj Mahal, Ocean Resort and Borgata each have their own unique vibe and provide a night out you’ll never forget.
OK so you won’t necessarily get Aerosmith or Elton John doing a multi-month residency at Atlantic City. But at weekends, the biggest stars pass through, often for one night only gigs, so time your visit carefully. Just to give you an idea, Alicia Keys, Rod Stewart, Sting and Andrea Bocelli are among the big names playing over the coming weeks. Hard Rock is probably the venue that gets the most famous names. There are some genuine legends of stand up passing through the city, too – Steve Martin and Jay Leno are both in town over the next month, to name just two.
Hit the beach
Here’s one thing you certainly can’t do in Las Vegas. At Atlantic City, the clue is in the name. There are gorgeous ocean views and sun-kissed beaches. At least, they are sun-kissed during the summer months! You can walk directly onto the beach from the boardwalk any time you like – it’s another part of Atlantic City that makes it feel a little more family-oriented than Sin City!
How many coastal resorts boast luxury boutiques by designer brands? Atlantic City is no ordinary resort town. In fact, it’s a genuinely unique place, and while the parallels with Las Vegas will always be made, it has a vibe all of its own.