Summer is finally here, and if you’re looking for an endless summer experience, staying for a weekend or week at one of the Cape May hotels will make you feel like you’re officially living on island time. With gorgeous beaches, non-stop family fun, and dreamy gingerbread Victorian architecture, a Cape May vacay is a classic family shore escape. The good news is you can choose how you want to do Cape May with budget-friendly to luxe options—stay at a condo-hotel with plenty of space and amenities, a grand-style resort with a sweeping porch looking out towards the ocean, or a white-washed beachfront hotel with nautical-themed rooms. Ready to get on the GSP and head to exit 0? Scroll down to find out more about some of the best kid-friendly Cape May hotels and restaurants in NJ, and if thinking ahead to the holidays (our fave time of year down there), check out our guide to where to stay during the holiday season in Cape May, too. (featured photo credit: Congress Hall)
9 Cape May hotels for families
Looking for the comfort and convenience of a condominium but don’t want to forgo the amenities of a high-end resort? Sandpiper will fit the bill with its one or two-bedroom suites with modern furnishings, luxurious bedding, and private balconies with an ocean view. Complimentary chairs, umbrellas, and towels will be waiting for you when the kids are ready to hit the nearby beach, and twice-daily housekeeping means you can relax when you return to your home away from home.
11 Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ 08204
Otherwise known as “The Summer White House,” this majestic hotel opened in 1816 as a humble boarding house that served as one of America’s first seaside resorts. Congress Hall’s lovingly restored resort in the heart of Cape May’s historic district pairs classic style with lots of kid-friendly touches, including beach amenities, a family pool, and on-site bikes. Stay busy from sunrise to sundown with family activities like dive-in movies at the pool and hunting for Cape May diamonds (clear quartz pebbles). And if mama needs a break, indulge in a spa treatment with locally sourced ingredients.
200 Congress Place, Cape May, NJ 08204
Your kids will love the interactive magic shows and family game room, and that’s before they try out the Olympic-size indoor and outdoor heated pools (great for those rainy and chilly days). Depending on the size of your crew, this beachfront hotel offers accommodations ranging from standard and ADA-accessible rooms to efficiency units and two-story townhouse suites. On-site dining at Hemingway’s Restaurant has a variety of kid-friendly fare and parent-friendly specialty cocktails.
1045 Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ 08204
Book one of these Victorian beauties if you want a beach home vacay with all the comforts of a hotel. With spacious, swoon-worthy interiors, a chef-style kitchen, beach service, and access to Congress Hall pools and spa, this feels like you’re a guest at a friend’s swanky beach house, but better. The five historic cottages are only half a block from the ocean and available for weekly rentals when you want to settle in for a while.
25 Jackson Street, Cape May, NJ 08204
Whether you’re taking a turn on the porch swing or sitting in a rocking chair as you sip a cool drink, this boutique inn and motel will evoke all sorts of nostalgia while you create brand-new memories for the whole family. Stay in a colorful Star Suite, complete with a backyard, or opt for a two-bedroom Carriage House suite if a private beach house vibe is more your style.
29 Perry Street, Cape May, NJ 08204
This cozy micro-resort houses only eight apartment-style rooms—half of which are child-friendly suites with private decks. Head to the outdoor cooking area to grill and chill, or splash in a heated saltwater pool. The hotel’s mobile beach kit (with Yeti coolers and mugs, towels, beach bags, and sand toys) will make your trek to the ocean hassle-free.
5 Stockton Place, Cape May, NJ 08204
Take a step back in time with a getaway on this 62-acre working farm a few miles away from the beach. Five historic cottages, including one dating back to the 1700s with a special kids’ loft, will give you a respite from the hustle and bustle of modern life. A quick drive or bike ride will bring you into town, and when you’re ready to come back to nature, try a farm-to-table meal featuring fresh ingredients cultivated right on the grounds.
140 Stevens Street, West Cape May, NJ 08204
This laidback beach lover’s retreat is just steps from the ocean and a quick walk to Cape May’s historic downtown. The spacious and stylish digs are comfortable and welcoming for kids, and some rooms can also accommodate the family dog. Once you’re done soaking up the sun, head over to the iconic Rusty Nail, where children’s meals are served on a souvenir Frisbee, and you can sit by the fire pit or take in some live entertainment.
205 Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ 08204
This beachside, newly-renovated boutique hotel is awash in white and blues for a crisp, seaside feel. It’s a perfect choice when you want to chill out for a few days. You can skip getting back in the car—a complimentary seasonal shuttle will take you to ICONA Diamond Beach (in nearby Wildwood Crest) and other stops throughout Cape May. When you’re done exploring, return to the nautical-style rooms or suites to unwind on the balcony and enjoy the view.
1101 Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ 08204
Cape May restaurants for everyone
Many Cape May hotels listed above have on-site restaurants, but there are plenty of other restaurants around town that can appeal to even the youngest (and fussiest) palates.
Grab a table in the outdoor dining area, and the kids will get a kick out of the 130-foot schooner that doubles as the restaurant’s cocktail lounge. Though the Lobster House is known for its fresher than fresh seafood, the menu also includes plenty of less adventurous meals for landlubbers.
On Fisherman’s Wharf, Cape May, NJ 08204
When you’re looking for a crowd-pleaser, you can’t go wrong with this landmark hot dog stand that serves classic dogs along with loads of signature faves like the Junk Yard Dog and the Messy Bessy Dog. Gluten-free and vegan options are available too.
319 Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ 08204
Surf’s up at this casual eatery, great for a quick bite on Taco Tuesday or any day of the week. In addition to burritos, quesadillas, and other Mexican fare, Big Wave Burritos serves smoothies for a healthy but delicious treat.
605 Lafayette Street, Cape May, NJ 08204
Breakfast is served all day at this family-friendly spot, with over 15 types of pancakes ranging from the classics to yummy flavors like M&M and peanut butter.
261 Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ 08204
Bring your appetite to this authentic Italian restaurant with plenty of kid faves, including spaghetti and meatballs, mozzarella sticks, and, of course, lots of pizza. Top off your meal with homemade cannoli.
315 Ocean Street, Unit #7, Cape May, NJ 08204
Let us know about your favorite Cape May hotels or restaurants—and any fun memories you have!
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