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The 11 Beachiest Ocean City Boardwalk Hotels

For a classic Mid-Atlantic beach experience, you can't beat Ocean City with its boardwalk, amusement parks, water parks, fishing, and watersports.

Ocean City’s boardwalk dates to 1902 and stretches for two and a half glorious miles lined with arcades, amusement parks, a haunted house, and all the fries, pizza and seafood you could ever want. You can check all the beach boxes in Ocean City: boardwalk, arcades, amusement park, water park, carousel, minigolf, real golf, days on the beach, sunsets over the sound, kayaking, jetskiing, fishing, or surfing on one of the rotating beaches dedicated to the sport.

If you do all these things and still want more, you could head down the road to Assateague Island National Seashore to watch the wild ponies, or to nearby Wallops Island and the NASA visitor center. If you like an active beach vacation with all the best things East Coast beach towns have to offer, check out these Ocean City boardwalk hotels, listed from south (nearest the busiest part of the boardwalk) to north (past the end of the boardwalk).

In the Thick of Things

On the southern end of the boardwalk, where the seagulls strut the boards alongside the summer throngs that come from DC and Baltimore and beyond, the Comfort Inn Boardwalk perches just above the action. The small hotel allows for personalized service for guests who come back year after year.

The pool deck is made for people watching on the boardwalk, with lots of lounge chairs lined up for you to watch the Marylanders go by. It’s an almost seamless integration with the boardwalk itself, so it’s easy to pop out to grab a bucket of Thrasher’s fries for the family, or just for you (no judgements here!). The keycard access means you won’t have all the masses joining your pool time, but you’ll feel like you’re in the middle of things.

Comfort Inn Boardwalk

Ocean City
8.4 Very good (2922 reviews)

Postcard views

With sea views framed by massive and private balconies, the Monte Carlo Oceanfront‘s rooms look like the beachy prints people bring home to remind them that summer exists when they are trudging through winter. This charming and colorful independent hotel sits right on the boardwalk but you don’t necessarily feel it. You can kick off your flipflops and watch the action from your whitewashed balcony above with beverage of choice in hand.

Renovated in 2019, the hotel offers beachfront and interior rooms with small kitchenettes. The rooftop pool is small but offers a nice break from the bustling boardwalk below. The Monte Carlo may not have all the amenities of some of the chain hotels nearby, but guests enjoy the homey nature and the very central location.

Monte Carlo Oceanfront

Ocean City
8.0 Very good (457 reviews)

Like an Old Friend

The vibe is friendly and family at the Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel on the boardwalk at 11th Street. Lots of smiles and greetings from staff as you make your way through the clubby lobby to the pool. Smallish rooms and large-ish balconies are the norm, because you want to be outside when you’re at the beach, right? If the weather doesn’t cooperate, the lobby’s fireplace beckons. Curl up with a book and some tea and wait it out in comfort.

It’s an older hotel, but it’s been upgraded several times in recent years. Most rooms include a microwave and a mini fridge, as well as a coffee pot. The staff are welcoming and the location can’t be beat if you want to be in the center of the action.

Howard Johnson Plaza Hotel - Ocean City Oceanfront

Ocean City
8.2 Very good (2939 reviews)

Big, Bright, and Modern

The newest oceanfront hotel is the Courtyard Ocean City Oceanfront. Expect Marriott quality, welcoming staff, and clean, updated rooms. White bunk beds and rattan lounge chairs make the suite seem like your own beach house.

For those who can’t bear to leave work entirely (who are you people??), or who need an excuse to get away from the kids for a minute, there’s an office center off the lobby with several workstations.

The indoor/outdoor heated pool is bright, with lots of seating, and especially welcome for kids who aren’t quite old enough for ocean swims. A well-equipped gym rounds out the offerings. All told, this is a great option for visiting in the off-season for its indoor amenities. The Captain’s Table restaurant is an Ocean City fave, and offers full breakfast options.

Courtyard Ocean City Oceanfront

Top rated
Ocean City
8.9 Excellent (865 reviews)

Family Traditions

Sometimes when you’ve got kids, you’ve got food issues. Shauna won’t eat eggs and Gianni only eats cold cuts and how the heck do you take those two out for a meal? At the Quality Inn Boardwalk, you’ve got everything you need to make a meal – oven, stove, microwave, full size fridge – right there in the room. But the last thing you want to do on vacation is dishes, amiright? No worries! The full kitchens at the Quality Inn Boardwalk have dishwashers. Unheard of! Toss those dishes in the washer and you’re ready for whatever Ocean City has to offer.

Right on the boardwalk, the Quality Inn Boardwalk is popular with families for its kitchenette rooms and indoor pool, which is a nice option in case of rain during your beach vacation! There’s an outdoor pool, too, overlooking the boardwalk and the beach, for maximum sun time.

Quality Inn Boardwalk

Ocean City
7.6 Good (3763 reviews)

Suite Relief

One of the larger hotels on the boardwalk, the Holiday Inn Hotel and Suites Ocean City is an all-suite hotel. Each suite includes a full kitchen, and some include multiple bedrooms and bathrooms. Families return year after year for the large rooms, great pools, and convenient location at the midway point of the boardwalk.

Kids will love the lazy river and slides in the kid pool, while adults can enjoy the tiki bar. The indoor pool is convenient for the off-season, but its location near the lobby is a little awkward.

Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Ocean City

Top rated
Ocean City
8.7 Excellent (1067 reviews)

Pretty in Pink

Towering pink above the boardwalk, the Grand Hotel & Spa offers sweeping views of sunrises over the ocean (or sunsets over the bay).

Indoor and outdoor pools mean you can swim any time of year. And in-room jacuzzi tubs offer a relaxing respite in the privacy of your own room.

The on-site restaurants – The Grand Terrace, EPIC Bar and Grille, and Buono Vito Pizzeria – offer great spots for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and the 24-hour Java Beach Cafe is available any other time you need a snack. Kitchenettes in the rooms are a plus for saving money at the beach by keeping breakfast and snacks in the room. And the legendary Phillips Crab House is just a block away.

Grand Hotel & Spa

Ocean City
7.8 Good (3501 reviews)

Crystal Blue Persuasion

It’s right on the boardwalk, but the Crystal Beach Hotel has lots of spaces to escape the crowds and relax on your terms. Run by the local Carousel chain of hotels, the Crystal Beach Hotel’s staff is very welcoming and works to make your stay as easy as possible, especially if you are traveling with little ones. The lobby area offers lots of places to relax indoors, but you’ll probably want to get outdoors, won’t you?

The beachside pool sits right on the boardwalk, and can get crowded, but there’s another option. For those who prefer a pool experience that is not in full view of the boardwalk, the Crystal Beach Hotel has you covered. Their second floor pool is on the street side of the hotel, not the ocean side, so it’s a bit quieter than their boardwalk-side pool.

Crystal Beach Hotel

Ocean City
7.6 Good (2242 reviews)

Retro Beach Fun

Go retro in a couple of different ways at Dunes Manor Hotel & Suites. The main building, just past the north end of the boardwalk, suggests the Victorian style of the original beach resorts, most notably in its lobby, where you can hear live piano music and enjoy afternoon tea. Rooms are more modern, though, and all have a view of the ocean.

Those needing more room can choose the Suites building next door, with kitchens and ocean views.

Dunes Court

Ocean City
7.8 Good (1047 reviews)

Splashtastic Pools

Just north of the boardwalk and right on the beach, the Hilton Ocean City Oceanfront Suites might just have the “funnest” outdoor pool in Ocean City, according to some kids I know. The two slides and tropical decorations are fun for the kids, while the grown-ups appreciate the swim-up bar.

Families also appreciate the kitchens in the suites, and the kid-focused activities in the summer, such as magic shows and movies. An arcade onsite is fun for kids and adults.

Hilton Ocean City Oceanfront Suites

Top rated
Ocean City
9.0 Excellent (1956 reviews)

The Quiet Side of the Beach

If you want to be on the quieter north end of Ocean City but still on the beach, the Princess Royale Oceanfront Resort is for you. The soaring beachfront atrium over the pool at the Princess Royale offers a view of the ocean from the comfort of a climate-controlled beach chair. And the hot tub and sauna will heat you up.

The Princess Royale is BIG, with big, multi-room suites, and it can be a long walk from your room to the lobby. But the views from the many oceanfront and ocean view rooms are gorgeous. Watch the sun rise over the ocean from your balcony with coffee from your in-room Keurig, or head down to Schooner’s for their breakfast buffet.

Princess Royale Oceanfront Resort & Condominiums

Ocean City
8.3 Very good (2979 reviews)