Coney Island Mermaid Parade
What I love most about travel is when you have an unexpected surprise thrown your way. Although pleasant surprises are certainly more appreciated than negative ones, I think a healthy dose of both really help you to grow as an individual.
Upon hearing about the Mermaid Parade from our New York City host, we decided to head all the way over to Cony Island from the top of Manhattan to check it out.
This annual mid June event, held since 1983, is one heck of a quirky parade focused primarily on the celebration of the arrival of summer.
Regardless of the weather, hundreds of thousands converge to either participate or witness what is going on.
What actually happens might you ask? In a nutshell, a whole lot of everything.
I witnessed signing, dancing, brawling and serious people watching. Performers were decked out in out of this world marine costumes with some choosing to wear less than others 😉 You’ll definitely spot some going completely topless and a few bare bums along the way. The central theme is around Mermaids and sea creatures and what the performers are wearing puts Halloween costumes to shame.
Paying homage to Coney Island Mardi Gras parades this colorful spectacle is eye candy for those watching and absolute gold for the photographer/video enthusiast. I could barely put my camera down; however, I did make sure to take a few moments just to witness what was going on with my own two eyes.
Coney Island Mermaid Parade Travel Video
Mermaid Parade Photo Essay
Colorful mermaid watching the Coney Island Mermaid Parade in New York City
One of many vintage cars that were making their way down the Coney Island Mermaid Parade
A highly animated Mermaid parader driving a nice racing car down the street in New York City
A group of paraders decked out in fancy marine costumes at the Mermaid Parade in Coney Island, New York City.
Uncle Sam was at The Mermaid Parade on Coney Island New York City
A little girl sitting on top of her Dad’s shoulders watching the Coney Island Mermaid Parade.
A New York City baseball mascot pointing at the crowd as it parades down the Coney Island Mermaid Parade.
A performer in a Mermaid costume waving as she walks down the street in New York City
A Mermaid parader looking for a few good seamen
Mermaid Parade Guide
When does The Mermaid Parade happen? Mid to late June annually
How much does it cost to attend Coney Island Mermaid Parade? Nada! It is absolutely FREE
What should I bring with me to the parade? A hat, sunscreen, water and camera/video equipment
How many people attend? Hundreds of thousands come to watch and thousands perform
How do I get there? Take the metro from anywhere in New York via Brooklyn to Coney Island
Do you recommend I check it out? Absolutely! I’d go again myself if I ever have the opportunity 😉
Putting this on my 2016 bucket list! Whaaat, so cool!!!
Great photos you have here Samuel. This Coney Island Mermaid Parade looks cool. First time to hear about this, I wanted to experience this kind of parade soon.
Thanks Stephen! It was a great parade and a nice surprise to our brief visit to NYC considering we didn’t even know it was happening until after we arrived.
This kind of thing is right up my alley!
I think you would have really enjoyed it Raymond!
The Mermaid Parade is the largest art parade in the nation. A celebration of ancient mythology and honky-tonk rituals of the seaside, it showcases over 1,500 creative individuals from all over the five boroughs and beyond, opening the summer with incredible art, entrepreneurial spirit and community pride. The parade highlights Coney Island Pageantry based on a century of many Coney parades, celebrates the artistic vision of the masses, and ensures that the summer season is a success by bringing hundreds of thousands of people to the amusement area in a single day.
It seems really fantastic and crazy enough! Thank you so much for great article and awesome photos, man!
Have a great time and enjoy your travel. 😉
So it’s a parade doubled as celebrating the arrival of summer, as well as Mardi Gras? I’ve never heard of this before. Looks like a crazy awesome time!
Thanks for posting. Great pics. Looks like it was a lot fun. Wish I was there.
The Mermaid Parade looks like a blast. I was in NYC in June a few years ago, but I think I missed the parade by a few days, will need to go back and check it out one day.
Fun parade! It’s probably as much fun for the parade participants dressing up as mermaids and riding vintage cars, as it is for people watching :-).
Knowing New Yorkers I bet it was a crazy day! Would love to get there myself one day.
This looks like a great parade, love all the cool photographs
First time I went there was two years ago. It was a crazy day and I wish I had known to get out there a lot earlier for a better view.
The parade looks like a lot of fun! I’ve never really been to a big one like for this or Mardi Gras, but I ought to one day to get a taste of some local culture! Thanks for sharing!
Looks like a riot!
This makes me miss Coney Island and NYC. So much fun.
Great photos! You forgot to mention how much you loved that kids roller coaster…. 🙂
Funny stuff! I love seeing the different costumes 🙂
Thanks Anna! They sure had very colorful and elaborate costumes 🙂
Looks quite special 😀
I’m a fan of parades, so I’d definitely go to this one!
Thanks Sofie! If you like parades this would be one not to miss 😉
Great summary Sam! Even though I missed it this year I was able to get the recap the following day (amazing!) 😀 Have a great time exploring the rest of NY!
Thanks Chanel! We loved our time in NYC and it was great to meet up with you in person 🙂
Great video and photos! I was sorry to miss the parade yesterday, so I enjoyed this vicarious visit.
Thanks Jeff! It was quite the spectacle. We had a great time 🙂
Looks like a fun parade!
Thanks Mica! It really was 🙂