The appeal and vibrancy of urban waterfronts are catalysts for urban progress and sustainable urban development. This study aims to thoroughly explore the temporal characteristics of waterfront vibrancy and explore people’s behavioral preferences for various types of waterfronts at various times. On the basis of social media data, this study uses the seasonal index analysis method to classify waterfronts. Then, the kernel density estimation was used to analyze the spatial structure of different types of waterfronts. Finally, temporally weighted regression was used to indicate people’s preferences for various types of waterfronts. In general, results show the different temporal characteristics of users in waterfronts at different times and their behavioral preferences for waterfronts as the reasons behind these preface characteristics. First, on weekdays, people tend to visit daily waterfronts close to residences, and people find it convenient to walk after 18:00 and engage in recreational activities dominated by consumption and exercise, which reach a peak at 22:00–24:00. Second, on weekends, people prefer the weekend waterfronts with complete entertainment facilities and cultural themes. The natural seasonal waterfronts with seasonal landscapes attract people in various seasons, such as spring and autumn, whereas the social seasonal waterfront may be more attractive during high seasons, especially in March and June, due to big water events or nearby colleges and universities. Therefore, the government should improve the facilities of various types of waterfronts to satisfy people’s preferences at different times and help in proposing targeted suggestions with reference to future city waterfront planning and space design, contributing to the waterfronts’ vitality improvement, urban features, and promotion of urban sustainable development.
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