Pleasure Beach Lives hosts seasonal walks out to Pleasure Beach, touring the burned bridge, assorted architectural ruins, and of course, the wildly spectacular beach. This walk is about 4 miles, takes about 2.75 hours, and much of it is over loose sand, rubble, and uneven terrain. All walks are free and open to the public.
burned in 1996. Since then, it has grown wild with piping plovers, osprey, cacti, turtles, deer, rabbits and foxes, while the existing structures left from its amusement park / public beach days have deteriorated into a living ruins. Today's Pleasure Beach is spectacular, and it is accessible by foot at all tides via Stratford's ruggedly beautiful Long Beach.Pleasure Beach, a large terminus of a narrow barrier beach peninsula in Stratford, has belonged to Bridgeport for nearly a century. The bridge that connected it to the Bridgeport mainland
Pleasure Beach Lives hosts seasonal walks out to Pleasure Beach, touring the burned bridge, assorted architectural ruins, and of course, the wildly spectacular beach. This walk is about 4 miles, takes about 2.75 hours, and much of it is over loose sand, rubble, and uneven terrain. (Be sure to wear sturdy shoes!) Often, a specialist guides the tour, offering expertise on wildlife or history.
Whether you've been to Pleasure Beach just once recently or went every summer as a child, it will come as no surprise that lots of folks have deep attachments to it, and many have found it inspirational.
History of Pleasure Beach
Report from Pleasure Beach
Pleasure Beach Community Meeting
Pleasure Beach Master Plan
Overtaking the LBW Cottages
Photography by Rob Dobi
Photography by Michelle Beaulieu
Save Pleasure Beach
Friends of Pleasure Beach
Pleasure Beach Lives
You can walk to Pleasure Beach along the lovely two miles of Stratford's Long Beach (directions & info) on your own, or join us on one of our guided walks. However, be sure to leave any four-legged friends at home. In order to protect endangered shorebirds, dogs are not allowed on the beach from April through November.
Don't have a car to drive to Long Beach? Take the bus to Lordship Blvd (route 113) and ride your bike on 113 North through the marsh to Lordship; turn right on Oak Bluff Ave, which dead-ends into the Long Beach parking lot.
Prefer to travel by sea? We've noticed folks arrive at Pleasure Beach by kayak, boat or jet ski. If you're paddling you can row right up to shore, but if your boat is larger there's a dock on the west side of the island.
Is this legal, you're wondering? Long Beach is a public park, open to all: just mind the roped-off nesting habitats. (When the LBWest cottages were still up, it WAS illegal to go near them, although the park itself remained open. This has caused some lasting confusion.) Pleasure Beach is technically a closed park, but remember that coastal-access is guaranteed by state law, so if you stay below the high tide mark you are on open land.
Pleasure Beach has become unique and astonishing through its isolation. In an already stunning urban seaside setting, 16 years of inaccessibility has allowed nature to reclaim its rather grand architectural ruins. Its current state of decay, so emblematic of Bridgeport, has transformed Pleasure Beach into Park City's meta-park. We think Pleasure Beach is one of the most amazing places we've ever seen, and we want to share it with others.