Atlantic City is nothing like other northeast beach destinations such as the Hamptons and the Cape. This city on the Jersey Shore is described as the Las Vegas of the East Coast, and with bright flashing lights dotting the boardwalk, big events (concerts, boxing matches), and boozed-up visitors, it's clear the reputation is deserved.
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The city declined in the mid-20th century, but had its resurgence in 1976, when inhabitants voted to legalize gambling. Today it's back, and some say, better than ever. Steel Pier's Ferris wheel and double-decker carousel glow long into the night. Adults mingle over cocktails at casino hotel lounges, or gamble into the wee hours of the morning. During the daytime, urbanites and out-of-towners can be found sprawled out on the sand.