5 Fun Things to Do in Cape May, New Jersey, if It's Your First Visit
Sep 19, 2022 at 8:00 AM in Things to Do by
So it's your first visit to Cape May, New Jersey? What took you so long?! Cape May is one of the country's oldest resort towns and has remained a favorite with families who flock to the area’s beautiful beaches year after year.
But what should you do when you get here, to see what all the fuss is about? Here are five fun things to do during your first visit.
1. Go to the beach!
You can't visit a destination like Cape May and not go to the beach! Cape May's beaches run about 2.5 miles parallel to Beach Avenue. Unlike beaches that you might find in other areas of the country, these beaches are safe, clean, family-friendly and, possibly best of all, convenient. Since they're right next to town, you're never more than a short walk away from dining, shopping, restrooms and parking.
2. Take in the views from one of Cape May’s top attractions.
One of Cape May's top attractions is the Cape May Lighthouse, situated within Cape May Point State Park. The lighthouse was built in 1859 and you can still walk the nearly-200 steps to the top of the lighthouse today. From there, you'll be treated to views across the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean. See why more than 2.5 million people have visited this historic spot!
3. Stroll along the Washington Street Mall.
What's a vacation without a little retail therapy? The Washington Street Mall is your place to go to shop, dine, drink and browse. The pedestrian thoroughfare is lined with quaint, local retailers, selling everything from souvenirs to sportswear, beach gear to beef jerky. The public space is also home to quite a few events throughout the season, so check the mall’s calendar to see what might be going on while you're in town. You may be able to catch a sidewalk sale, holiday parade or concert.
Photo courtesy of https://www.washingtonstreetmall.com/
4. Visit one of Cape May's historic homes.
Cape May is famous for its Victorian homes that can be spotted all around town. However, there’s only one Victorian house museum, the Emlen Physick Estate. Visit and see how the Physick family lived and worked when the home was built in 1879. Tour the mansion’s 18 rooms and take in the architecture, which is considered one of the best examples of Victorian Stick Style architecture in the country.
Photo courtesy of https://capemaymac.org/experience/emlen-physick-es...
5. See a different side of history at the Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation Museum.
The Victorian Era not quite your thing? If you're looking for something a little more high-speed, consider a trip to the Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation Museum. The museum is situated within a World War II U.S. Air Force training dive bomber squadron facility and its collection includes a wide array of historic aircraft.
Need even more suggestions for your trip to Cape May? If so, check out the Discovery Map guide to Cape May, New Jersey, for recommendations on where to go, where to stay, where to dine, where to shop and more, while you’re visiting this beautiful beach town.