Cape May Hotels and Restaurants: Where To Go For A Family-Friendly Vacation in New Jersey

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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

cape may hotels sandpiper hotel nj New Jersey

With a prime beach location and condo-style rooms, Sandpiper Beach Club is an excellent choice for families. Photo Credit: Sandpiper Beach Club

Sandpiper Beach Club

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
(800) 732-7816

Congress Hall

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
(888) 944-1816

The Grand Hotel

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
(609) 884-5611

cape may hotels in New Jersey the Virginia hotel nj

These cottages have that classic Victorian style Cape May is famous for. Photo Credit: The Virginia Cottages

The Virginia Cottages

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
(800) 732-4236

The Star

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
(800) 297-3779

cape may hotels in New Jersey the lokal hotel nj

Your kids won’t want to leave the heated saltwater pool at Lokal Hotel. Photo Credit: @stay_lokal

Lokal Hotel

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
(609) 536-9157

Beach Plum Farm Cottages

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
(609) 459-0121

cape may hotels beach shack cape resorts hotel nj New Jersey

The Beach Shack is one of our fave Cape May hotels and is so close to the ocean. Photo Credit: Beach Shack

Beach Shack

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
(877) SHACK-07

cape may hotels in New Jersey icona hotel nj

Classic nautical style meets beachfront luxury at the ICONA Cape May. Photo Credit: @iconacapemay

ICONA Cape May

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
(609) 551-0100

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.

cape may restaurants the lobster house nj

Enjoy fresh seafood and an ocean breeze at the Lobster House. Photo Credit: @the_lobster_house

The Lobster House

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
(609) 884-8296

Hot Dog Tommy’s

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
(609) 884-8388

Big Wave Burritos

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
(609) 898-8646

Cape May restaurants bills pancake house nj New Jersey

Find the quintessential Jersey Shore breakfast at Uncle Bill’s Pancake House. Photo Credit: @unclebillspancakehouse

Uncle Bill’s Pancake House

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
(609) 884-7199

Mario’s of Cape May

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
(609) 884-0085

Let us know about your favorite Cape May hotels or restaurants—and any fun memories you have!

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About Author

Charissa is a mom to two teenage girls and one very pampered pup. A lover of good books, strong coffee and bad puns, she has worked in publishing for 20+ years as a writer and copy editor. When not at home watching Gilmore Girls (Team Jess!), Charissa and her daughters enjoy hiking at Jockey Hollow, unearthing hidden treasures at local thrift stores (The Bargain Box in Morristown is one of their faves) and eating their way through New Jersey’s food truck festivals.

1 Comment

  1. Charissa, that was a fascinating read! If you’re planning a trip to the Jersey Shore with your family, Cape May features some of the gorgeous beaches. Not only does the city have fantastic beaches, but it also has miniature golf, museums, arcades, nightlife, and kid-friendly restaurants. Not to mention a plethora of hotels and restaurants to make your stay both comfortable and exciting.

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