5 Fabulous Things To Do in Cape May With Kids That Are Fun For The Whole Family

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Disclosure:  Hotels.com asked me to share my ideas on what to do in Cape May NJ.

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Cape May New Jersey is one of the popular beach towns in South New Jersey. Historic, affluent and charming, Cape May has been called the Hamptons-equivalent of the Jersey Shore. In 1816 Cape May became the first seaside resort town in the USA thanks to wealthy families visiting for a break from the summer swelter of the cities. There are plenty of things to do in Cape May especially in Cape May with kids.

Accommodation in Cape May with Kids

As a family-friendly beach resort, accommodation in Cape May with kids is easy to source. Most places are in easy walking distance of the beach. Unlike other towns in South Jersey, Cape May does not have any large hotel chains.

Colorful "Wish You Were Here" postcard sign in Cape May, New Jersey.
People flock here for the charming retro seaside fun you can have in Cape May with kids

Of course, Cape May still does provide plenty of accommodation ranging from hotels, historic inns, cheerful motels and charming guest houses. Here are our favourite family friendly options for Cape May hotels:

  • Cape May Icona offers resort-style luxury with a free shuttle to the beach.
  • Sandpiper Beach Resort is beach front with  all-suites accommodation.
  • La Mer Beachfront Hotel has both hotel and condo apartments with private beach access.
  • Congress Hall is a historic 19th century resort which has hosted 5 American presidents in its storied past.
  • The Grand Hotel is recently renovated, beach front and one of the largest hotels in Cape May.
NB!  There are no public swimming pools in Cape May so make sure your accommodation has a pool if you would like pool time! When my kids were younger, they would love to play in the sand at the beach but insist on swimming in the hotel pool.

5 Things To Do in Cape May With Kids

Cape May with kids is a joy. Not only is there a wide sand beach but plenty of outdoor activities to keep them entertained.

Visit the Beach

The Cape May beach front runs for 2.5 miles and is split into smaller sections each with a unique vibe. For example, family-friendly The Cove is loved by surfers, Sunset Beach is a great location for relaxing at the end of the day, Cape May Point State Park is a great place to watch dolphins, and Decatur Street Beach is near the restaurants and bars.

Kids will love looking for Cape May Diamonds which are most commonly found at Higbee and Sunset beaches. These ‘diamonds’ are actually quartz pebbles worn down smooth by the Delaware River.

Older kids will  love the parasailing and jet skiing opportunities at the shore.

Note! Be sure to watch the moving Evening Flag Ceremony with Veteran’s casket flags at Sunset Beach during the summer evenings.

Lifeguards patrol the beach during the day in July and August. The beaches have facilities like showers and restrooms.

There are beach tag fees which are required for everyone from the age of 12.  Beach tags are needed for all beaches from Memorial Day until Labor Day. Tags can vary from daily, weekend or seasonal. You can buy beach tags at the beaches themselves.

wide sand beach at Cape May in New Jersey
Days of fun for the whole family at the wide sandy beach at Cape May New Jersey

Visit a Historical Attraction

When you are tired of the beach, other things to do in Cape May with kids include visiting various historical attractions. The Cape May Lighthouse is a historic lighthouse that is open to the public.

Cape May Lighthouse in Cape May New Jersey
Beautiful and historic, Cape May Lighthouses is open to the public

The Cape May Fireman’s Museum is not only free to visit but also has a 1928 vintage fire truck. Historic Cold Spring Village is a living history village showing early American life.

Take A Tour

See the town with some old-fashioned fun in a Cape May Carriage tour. For a multi-generational family activity, take a MAC trolley tour which have several options from which to choose.

Outside of town, there are hundreds of birds and fish that call the Cape May wetlands home.Take an eco-cruise on The Skimmer boat to see the wildlife in the Cape May Wetlands. Older children may prefer to take a guided kayak tour of the wetlands. The Nature Center of Cape May run by The Audubon Center has many family friendly programs.

For a nice after dinner walk, stroll the promenade which runs two miles alongside the beach. As you would expect from a seaside resort, there are candy stores, ice cream vendors and gaming arcades along the way to keep the kids entertained.

victorian buildings in Cape May
Victorian buildings in Cape May provide historic charm to this New Jersey seaside town

Animal Attractions

Cape May County Park and zoo is free to visit and is famous for its breeding snow leopards. Take a cruise on the Cape May Whale Watcher ship to spot whales and mammals in the bay of Cape May. The Cape May Whale Watch and Research Center also do whale watching excursions.

For something unusual but that kids will love, visit the Bay Springs Farm to see their alpacas.

Eat Well

Cape May has a lot of different dining options, including many with children’s menus.

  • Local institution, the Mad Batter is known for its scrumptious pancakes at breakfast and family-friendly food the rest of the day.
  • Uncle Bill’s Pancake House serves up breakfast all day.
  • Ocean View Restaurant serves up family fare with a beautiful view.
  • Cape May is also one of the locations for the coveted ice cream concoctions of Peace Pie.
  • Don’t forget the restaurants in Washington Street Mall (and stores selling donuts, ice-cream, fudge, chocolate and salt water taffy).

Map of Things To Do Cape May

Map of things to do in Cape May New Jersey with kids
Map of things to do in Cape May New Jersey with kids

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