NEW YORK (PIX11) — Heading to one of New York City’s eight public beaches is a great way to spend a day, relax and beat the summer heat.

New York City’s public beaches are free and open to everyone from Memorial Day weekend through Sept. 11.

The eight public beaches in New York City are Orchard Beach in the Bronx; Coney Island and Manhattan Beach in Brooklyn; Rockaway Beach in Queens; and Midland Beach, South Beach, Cedar Grove Beach and Wolfe’s Pond Beach on Staten Island.

During beach season, lifeguards are on duty from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Swimming is only allowed when lifeguards are on duty. Swimming is prohibited in the closed sections of the beach, which are marked with signs or red flags.

Each of New York City’s public beaches offer something a little different. Here’s what to know about each one.

Cedar Grove Beach

  • Borough: Staten Island
  • Location: Ebbitts Street and Cedar Grove Avenue
  • About: NYC Parks describes Cedar Grove Beach as “smaller and somewhat more tranquil” than neighboring Midland Beach and South Beach.
  • More information: Cedar Grove Beach

Coney Island

  • Borough: Brooklyn
  • Location: On Atlantic Ocean, from West 37th Street to Ocean Parkway
  • About: Coney Island, a popular beach destination, features its famous boardwalk, amusement rides, beach volleyball, handball and basketball courts and nearly three miles of sandy beaches.
  • More information: Coney Island

Manhattan Beach

  • Borough: Brooklyn
  • Location: On Atlantic Ocean, Oriental Boulevard, from Ocean Avenue to Mackenzie Street
  • About: Located on the Atlantic Ocean, Manhattan Beach is a “small, family-friendly beach” that offers locals a calmer beach experience than neighboring Brighton Beach, according to NYC Parks.
  • More information: Manhattan Beach

Midland Beach

  • Borough: Staten Island
  • Location: On Lower New York Bay
  • About: Midland Beach shares the Franklin D. Roosevelt Boardwalk with neighboring South Beach. It tends to be somewhat less crowded than South Beach, according to NYC Parks.
  • More information: Midland Beach

Orchard Beach

  • Borough: The Bronx
  • Location: On Long Island Sound in Pelham Bay Park
  • About: Orchard Beach was dubbed “The Riviera of New York” when it first opened in the 1930s. The 1.1-mile beach contains a promenade, central pavilion, two playgrounds, 26 courts for basketball, volleyball and handball and more.
  • More information: Orchard Beach

Rockaway Beach

  • Borough: Queens
  • Location: On Atlantic Ocean, from Beach 9th Street, Far Rockaway, to Beach 149th Street, Neponsit
  • About: Rockaway Beach is home to New York City’s only legal surfing beaches. It also offers a variety of playgrounds and other outdoor activities.
  • More Information: Rockaway Beach

South Beach

  • Borough: Staten Island
  • Location: On Lower New York Bay
  • About: With a view of the Verrazzano Bridge, South Beach offers a biking trail, boardwalk, kayaking, tennis courts and fishing off the Ocean Breeze Fishing Pier.
  • More information: South Beach

Wolfe’s Pond Beach

  • Borough: Staten Island
  • Location: On Raritan Bay and Prince’s Bay, Holton to Cornelia avenues
  • About: NYC Parks describes Wolfe’s Pond Beach as New York City’s “best-kept secret, a small, calm and secluded beach that’s a perfect retreat for those looking to get away from summer’s crowds.”
  • More information: Wolfe’s Pond Beach