Cape May picture
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Price & Hours

Free

Details

Free, Neighborhood/Area Type
More than Full Day Time to Spend
4.0scorecard
  • 5.0Value
  • 3.0Food Scene
  • 4.0Atmosphere

Just about 45 miles south of Atlantic City is a much calmer stretch of Jersey shore – Cape May. Founded in 1620 by the Dutch, Cape May didn't reach its stride until the 1800s when it became a vacation spot for wealthy Southerners who reportedly didn't want to venture much farther into Yankee territory. Today, vacationers from all over – not just the South – flock to Cape May for its relaxing-bed and-breakfasts (many of them complete with rocking chairs and wraparound porches) and clean, family-friendly beaches. To enjoy Cape May's beaches – from Higbee to Poverty – you'll need to purchase a beach tag. Daily beach tags cost $6 and three-day passes cost $12. You can find beach tags at the beach entrance and adjacent City Hall.

Visiting families loved Cape May and its beaches because of their cleanliness and quiet atmosphere. Many travelers also appreciated the use of tags because it made the beaches less crowded.

Cape May's welcomes beachgoers between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. (You'll need a vehicle to drive from Atlantic City to Cape May's shores.) Lifeguards are on staff until 5:30 p.m. in the summertime. For more information, visit Cape May's tourism website. You'll also find eateries along Beach Avenue, a cache of independent shops at Washington Street Mall and some art galleries in Cape May.

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More Best Things To Do in Atlantic City

Atlantic City Beach1 of 11
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Type
Time to Spend
#1 Atlantic City Beach

If you're not visiting Atlantic City to gamble, chances are you're coming to hit the beach. The city's beach is wide and its camel-hued sands are soft – recent travelers said they were impressed with the cleanliness and with how much room there was to spread out on this beach. The Atlantic Ocean's waves are good for body boarding, boogie boarding and wave jumping for the little ones, while adults can enjoy walking along the flat terrain near the water or relaxing in a beach chair. On-site facilities include showers and changing rooms, plus lifeguards are on duty during the summer from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Beachgoers also have access to the boardwalk, which is populated with eateries and shops selling beach gear and water sports equipment.

Unlike many other New Jersey beaches, Atlantic City's sands are free to access – you don't need a fee-based badge or pass to visit. For more information on the beach, visit the tourism board's website

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