The waters around New York City and throughout Long Island Sound become a recreational yachting playground between the Memorial and Labor Day holiday weekends each summer, says Michael Revier, general manager of the 154-slip IGY Newport Yacht Club & Marina, located on New York Harbor in Jersey City, New Jersey, directly across the Hudson River from downtown Manhattan.
“From classic yachts to modern power cruisers, dingy sailboat regattas to offshore sport fishing, people from all walks of life find relief from their busy lives out on these waters.”
Michaele Scarpulla, Marketing Information Coordinator for the 232-slip IGY Montauk Yacht Club Resort & Marina, says, “There are many beaches that make Long Island a popular summer getaway. Some of the most famous include Jones Beach State Park, only an hour from New York City, which offers 6-1/2 miles of beach, boardwalk, nature preserve, playgrounds and ample parking. Other famous beaches are located in the Hamptons east on the south fork: Main Beach in East Hampton just voted #1 beach in the USA as did Coopers Beach a few years ago in Southampton Village. For surfers, Ditch Plains in Montauk is famous for its consistently thrilling waves.”
Cruise Long Island and Long Island Sound by land or sea.
Cruise Long Island Sound by LAND in Montauk, Scarpulla suggests breakfast in Hurricane Alley at the Montauk Yacht Club Resort & Marina, followed by sightseeing at the historic Montauk Point Lighthouse. Built in 1796 and located in the Montauk Point State Park, the lighthouse is the fourth oldest still in active duty in the U.S. Montauk is often referred to as one of the Sports Fishing Capitals of the World, therefore angling for tuna, striped bass and fluke is a great way to spend the rest of the day. Book a head boat, charter boat or rent your own boat. Cap off the day with a sunset dinner at Navy Beach. Seafood is the star here. Signature dishes include Dungeness Crab Cake with Fennel-Orange salad and Dijon-lemon aioli; Montauk Clam & Corn Chowder with Bacon, Chives and Basil Oil; and the Lobster & Clam Bake with Mussels, Corn and Red Potatoes. Other fun ways to enjoy the Montauk area including taking surfing lessons at Ditch Plains and spending the afternoon shopping along East Hampton’s Main Street. This shopper’s paradise offers everything from exclusive designer boutiques with one of a kind finds to name brands such as Tiffany, Ralph Lauren and more.
Cruise Long Island Sound by SEA, cast off from the Newport Yacht Club & Marina and head south around The Battery and up the East River. On this route, you can enjoy the sights of the eastern shore of Manhattan, including the South Street Seaport, The United Nations Building and Roosevelt Island, plus shoot under eight huge bridges to enter the western end of the Long Island Sound.
“From there,” suggests Revier, “head for Stamford, Connecticut, and pick up a mooring at the Stamford Yacht Club. Here, you can watch a one-design dingy regatta before enjoying a good meal at the clubhouse. Next, make a short trip across the Sound to the popular summer anchorage at Sand City, a small sandy shoal separating Northport and Huntington Bays on the North Shore of Long Island. Enjoy the sun and the protected water all day before heading into North Port for the night.”
Next, stop at Mattituck Inlet on the North Shore of Long Island. It’s a small, easy-to-miss inlet that’s only visited by a handful of boats. The Old Mill inn is a good spot for dinner. If the seas are fair, cruise over to the Historic Seaport of Essex on the Connecticut River. Enjoy the Historic vibe of the water front and visit the many quaint shops and restaurants. Marinas and anchorages abound in this old maritime harbor.
On the last day of this itinerary, Revier says, “head southeast from the Connecticut River and shoot The Race, the narrow stretch of water between the North Fork of Long Island and Fishers Island, before turning due south for Lake Montauk, home of the Montauk Yacht Club Resort & Marina.”
There are a number of seasonal events that make for even more fun in the Long Island area during the summer. In Montauk, fishermen can look forward to several tournaments. In June, there’s the Star Island Yacht Club Shark Tournament June 13 to 15 and the Montauk Marine Basin Shark Tag Tournament June 27 to 29. In August, the Mako Thresher Mania Tournament at Star Island Yacht Club takes place August 1 to 3 and the Mercury Marine Montauk Grand Slam Tournament from August 16 to 18.
Of course, the big holiday event of the season is the Fourth of July Fireworks in New York Harbor. The fireworks display stretches from a point on the Hudson River just outside the Newport Yacht Club & Marina and extends all the way up to midtown Manhattan.
“Thousands of spectator will line the banks of the river to watch,” says Revier, “but our slip holders don’t have to move a muscle as the the display is visible from most of the docks in our marina.”