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PHOTO: A ride at Seaside Heights, New Jersey is just one of the ways you can dig the Garden State. (Courtesy of New Jersey Tourism)
From the buzzing hustle of commuters hopping on New Jersey Transit trains by day to the invigorating nightlife consumed by discoes and bars, the state of New Jersey is an understated summertime playground for every traveler.
So before the warm temperatures are overpowered by the chills of winter, take advantage of the following Jersey hotspots that guarantee lots of laughs, thrills, and if you're fortunate a bit of Lady Luck.
Atlantic City: Hit the Slots
Brightened by flashing lights bouncing off of its glitzy hotels, Atlantic City is every gamer's paradise, and that's a fact. The glittering city is a feast for the senses with restaurants designed to tantalize every craving; a boardwalk buzzing with chatter, music and local performers; sizzling nightclubs; high-end shopping as well as cozy accommodations.
But the city's biggest show stopper is undeniably its plethora of casinos alluring the high roller to the infrequent gambler who all come with one mission - to make it big. And while several casinos including Trump Plaza, Showboat and most recently Revel have announced they will be closing, there are still plenty of ways to let it ride in Atlantic City.
Yet, excitement continuously consumes the hotel casinos, where the contagious sounds of slot machines and gamers making their bets create a cloud of intensity. Lights gleaming from chandeliers spot the various glances of betters mesmerized by the thrill of Atlantic City's gaming action. Even if Lady Luck isn't on their side, there's never a dull moment under this city's brightest bulbs.
Catch a show
Along with an eccentric gaming experience, Atlantic City also acts as a stage where world-class entertainers put on grand sold-out shows. From artists like Beyoncé to comedians like Jim Gaffigan, no two shows are alike, especially when taking a seat amid the roar of wild clapping and screaming fanatics jumping out of their seats.
Six flags: Ride a rollercoaster
Have you ever wanted a bird's-eye-view of New Jersey? Well, we're not taking about observing one gorgeous spot for hours while time slowly goes by. If you're intrigued by adventure you'll probably be interested in taking the sights in from an outrageous rollercoaster - only if you can keep your eyes open at all times.
Six Flags in the town of Jackson is sprinkled with vibrant attractions and games around every corner. But it would be insane to visit this amusement park without feeling the wind in your hair while hanging upside down on a thrill ride like Bizarro, Batman or the Green Lantern, and flying through the air from the Dare Devil Dive.
Let's hope you haven't stuffed your stomach on burgers or funnel cakes because these heart-racing adventures can instantly become a spewing nightmare.
Long Beach Island: Hit the Beach
We've all become aware of the Jersey Shore thanks to the MTV hit show. But not all of New Jersey's beaches have been tainted by camera crews capturing the wild behaviors of a group of outlandish individuals.
Long Island Beach prides itself for being a premier spot for riding the waves of the Atlantic. Pristine white sand is laid at the town's feet for miles on end - where guests are frequently spotted bathing in the sun for that perfect tan.
There are also many ways to dry off that don't involving staying wrapped in a towel. Every avid golfer cannot stay away from the Thundering Surf Water Park & Adventure Golf. Long Beach Island is also a shopper's paradise decorated with a wide spectrum of stores filled with merchandise fit for every wallet.
Cape May: Cape May Bird Observatory
Cape May has a bag of many tricks up its sleeve but none astonishes the nature lover like the Cape May Bird Observatory. Stepping into this bird haven, visitors instantly become smitten by the harmonious songs of blue-winged warblers, lark sparrows, purple finches, and yellow-headed blackbirds to name a few. Even birds need a rest after flying for miles on end, and that's where the Cape May Bird Observatory comes in handy.
During spring and fall, the winged creatures utilize the observatory as a resting stop, allowing locals and travelers to observe their interesting features and behaviors. Two locations including the Center for Research and Education in Cape May Court House as well as the Northwood Center in Cape May Point, means double the birding pleasure for the avian admirer.
Seaside Heights: Scope the boardwalk
Seaside Heights is a melting pot of colors and activities fashioned for all ages. But its main attraction award goes to the boardwalk. Buzzing with pubs filled with beer-thirsty drinkers and children working hard to score a stuffed animal, Seaside Heights is a treat for all ages.
As more and more people flood the charming walkway, every now and then hunger pains chime in because of deliciously tempting sausage stands and pizza shows permeating the atmosphere with their wonderful smells. And if you want to escape the crowds, there's always the Ferris wheel that promises a moment of peace from way up in the sky.
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