Is Coney Island Safe? Everything You Need To Know


Coney Island is a classic American seaside town that is famous for its boardwalk, its pier, its amusement park and for being the location of the original Nathan’s Hot Dog.

If you are thinking about visiting Coney Island and have some concerns about its safety, have no fear! We cover everything you need to know about its safety.

is coney island safe

Is Coney Island Safe To Visit Now?

Coney Island is safe to visit now, but only during the daytime. However, it is not the safest place to visit at night. There is less people in the area and the environment can get sketchy.

As long as you stay in the tourist attraction areas (Boardwalk, Luna Park), you shouldn’t have any problems. It is when you stray outside those areas and into the neighborhoods, that you put yourself in a less than ideal situation, especially at night.

(Related: Is Atlantic City Safe?)

What do residents of Coney Island say about it’s safety?

  1. In Coney Island, the further west you go the worse it gets. The Seagate community is at the furthest end of Coney Island and is literally walled off. There’s huge walls & razor-wire and security inspecting people going in and out. It’s not uncommon to see open air drug markets on the corner. Your best best is to stay east of Stillwell Ave.
  2. There’s nothing to tour in Coney Island besides the amusement park and the boardwalk. There is limited food and shopping options and the nightlife is non existent outside of the summer time.
  3. Aside from the boardwalk, Coney Island is not safe. It’s a low income area and most of the housing is public housing.
  4. The closer you get to Brighton Beach, the safer you will be.
  5. I lived in Coney Island for the majority of my life and no one spends the night here, unless you have family or friends that live here.
  6. I don’t care what people say, Coney Island is the hood. You can’t sugar coat it. This is facts. If the amusement park is closed, it is extra sketchy.
  7. My best advice is to leave before the sun goes down. You will see the crowd changing. Take what you will with that information.
  8. Coney Island is not a place where you stay and vacation. It’s a place where you visit during the day and get the hell out of there when night comes.
  9. There are no hotels in Coney Island for a reason. No one wants to spend the night there!
  10. The best way to describe Coney Island is its the run down carnival that some people get nostalgic about while eating hot dogs.
  11. Coney Island is a crappy amusement park on a dirty beach, where you are liable to get shot if you walk two block away from the touristy area.
  12. Watch that VICE video. Those are the people living in Coney Island. BING BONG!
  13. Coney Island is a bit trashy and run down. Its like the beach getaway that died and people stopped caring about. There’s not much going on besides the boardwalk and there are shady people just hanging about. It very similar to Atlantic City but less crime-ridden.

Is Coney Island Safe For A Woman?

Coney Island is safe for a woman as long as visit during the daytime and know how to handle people that sometimes approach you.

Don’t engage with people who try to stop you on the street. Just keep walking, say nothing or say "no, thank you."

Also, don’t engage or make eye-contact with erratic people. Just keep walking.

Is Coney Island Safe For Families?

Coney Island is safe for families during the daytime and on the weekends when it is crowded. Avoid walking around late at night and stay in well populated areas and you should be fine.

Is Coney Island Safe At Night?

Coney Island is not the safest place at night, especially in the areas outside of the tourist attractions. You should stay in well populated areas at night and avoid walking through alleys, desolate areas and through the the neighborhoods.

Is Coney Island Worth Visiting?

Coney Island is worth visiting during the DAYTIME and during the summer when its more lively. If you are just there just for the beach, Brighton beach, just east of Coney Island, is a better beach that is cleaner, safer and less ‘ratchety’.

It’s also worth mentioning that Coney Island is not a place where people vacation at. It’s not a place to rest and rejuvenate.

It’s more of a day trip destination, where you go to the beach, check out the boardwalk, check out the aquarium, see a baseball game, go to Nathans and then take off.

There is not much else going on in the area and it’s also not the safest place in terms of crime.

Is The Coney Island Boardwalk Safe?

The Coney Island Boardwalk is safe to visit during the daytime. Late at night, there is less people around the people that are around, can be a bit shady.

Areas to avoid in Coney Island

The further west you go, the more sketchy the neighborhood becomes. A good rule of thumb when visiting Coney Island is to stay stay east of Stillwell Ave and in the touristy areas.

There is not much going on outside of the tourist areas and the neighborhoods around Coney Island are not the safest places to visit.

areas to avoid in Coney Island

Tips to stay safe while visiting Coney Island

  • Always pay attention to your surroundings. Don’t wear headphones or mindlessly scroll Instagram. Be alert.
  • Always wear sandals or shoes while walking on the beach. You don’t want step on a needle that someone discarded in the sand.
  • Don’t leave your drink unattended at any time.
  • Trust your gut. If a situation feels off, turn around and leave. Remove yourself from that situation.
  • There’s no need to be polite if someone is making you feel uncomfortable.
  • Project confidence, stand up straight, walk decisively, keep your eyes up and constantly scanning.
  • Don’t engage with the homeless or mentally ill people. Avoid eye contact and just keep walking.

Mariska Lee

Mariska is a recovering attorney who gave up her professional job to discover new perspectives of life while traveling in a 2009 Ford Transit. She has been living the van life for 3 years and has not looked back since.

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