New York City is great, but sometimes you've got to get away from the constant din of packed sidewalks and honking traffic. That's doubly true in the summer, when the heat on city streets and inside subway cars can become particularly oppressive.
Luckily there are a number of places to go for the weekend that are relatively easy to get to from the city. Here are five quick ideas.
This might be the easiest option. If you head down to Penn Station, the shore is just a quick trip on the Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) away. The train will drop you off just steps from the beach. If you've got a car, it might take about an hour or so. It's so easy that you can do a simple day trip, but if you're at the beach you might as well hang out for the weekend, right?
The beach is nice and well maintained, within walking distance of restaurants and bars. The only catch: a day pass for the beach will cost you $15, a bit pricier than some might like. But if you need to get away fast, this is a nice option for the weekend.
Most think skiing when they think about the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania. But for the outdoorsy city-dweller, the area less than two hours away by car is a perfect getaway. There are plenty of cabins to stay in for the weekend or, if you're feeling in the mood for luxury, all-inclusive resorts. Some activity ideas include golf, hiking, pool-side lounging and camping.
It's surprisingly difficult to take public transportation to the East Coast's gambling hub (a train line was discontinued a few years ago). But you can hop on a Greyhound bus out of Port Authority and get there in a couple hours (be forewarned: lines to get on the bus are long, so show up ahead of your planned departure time). Atlantic City has fallen on hard times, but if you got a gambling itch, A.C. can be a good getaway. Just remember to take some time to stroll the boardwalk or get down to the beach when you're losing too much money.
If wine is your thing, this is your getaway. The upstate destination is a haul, some five hours in the car away. But you'll be lakeside and within spitting distance of countless wineries. There are a bevy of options for the curious traveler, check out this site to parse through different winery deals.
You have to fly to the Massachusetts town, but if you're going all out for the weekend, the flight it just an hour and pretty inexpensive. As Complex points out, this is for the ritzy types so you should "be prepared to spend some dough." But the island is chock full of great beaches, good food, breweries and serene views. This might be best for a special occasion, but either way it will be a good time.