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A Weekend Adventure with the Cape May – Lewes Ferry

A woman enjoying a morning on the Cape May Ferry

The Cape May – Lewes Ferry offers an amazing experience for those who love making memories near the sea. There was nothing more perfect than spending a mother-daughter weekend visiting Cape May, New Jersey for the first time as well as Lewes, Delaware thanks to the Cape May-Lewes Ferry!

A woman enjoying an evening on the beach in Cape May

The Mid-Atlantic coastal regions are thriving from late May through early September and there is nothing better than heading to the Jersey Shore on the weekends!

Since my family has a shore house in Lavallette, NJ, I usually do not explore other beaches along the New Jersey shoreline. However, I have always had wanderlust for the charming town of Cape May.

A beautiful Victorian mansion in Cape May

During my Cape May weekend, I went glamping, saw the beach, enjoyed the sunset, admired the colorful Victorian mansions, ate delicious food, drank amazing wine and took the ferry to explore Lewes, DE.

Discover the best things to do during a weekend in America’s oldest seaside resort and read all about my experience on the Cape May – Lewes Ferry.

**My weekend in Cape May, NJ was a press trip. This is a sponsored post from the Cape May-Lewes Ferry. This post is also in partnership with Glamping Hub who hosted me in one of their cabins for two nights.


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A Weekend Escape to Cape May, NJ through the Cape May - Lewes Ferry

About Cape May, New Jersey:

A woman in front of a colorful mansion in Cape May, New Jersey

Originally discovered by the Dutch in the 17th Century, Cape May is located at the southernmost tip of New Jersey’s peninsula. It borders the Atlantic Ocean as well as the Delaware Bay.

A woman enjoying a summer weekend in Cape May

Cape May became a vacation destination for those living in Philadelphia during the mid 18th Century and was recognized as one of the finest beach resorts in the 19th Century.

In 1878, a fire that lasted five days destroyed 30 blocks in Cape May and as part of the reconstruction efforts, the replacement homes were built Victorian style.

A fun fact is that Cape May boasts the second largest collection of Victorian homes behind San Francisco.

A beautiful bed and breakfast in Cape May

Today, Cape May is a popular vacation destination and was recognized as one of America’s top 10 beaches by the Travel Channel. There is nothing more perfect than a Cape May weekend.

Getting to Cape May:

A woman enjoying the beach during a weekend in Cape May NJ

Cape May is around 3 hours from New York City; 1.5 hours from Philadelphia; 3.5 hours from Washington D.C.; 2.5 hours from Baltimore and 6 hours from Boston if you are driving.

Beautiful nature in Cape May

When it comes to air travel, there is a local airport in Cape May. The nearest international airports are Philadelphia International Airport, Atlantic City International Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Since the big airports are far from Cape May, it is best to rent a car to get there.

My Experience Staying with Glamping Hub:

A woman staying in a cabin through Glamping Hub in Cape May

Even though I love the outdoors, I will admit that I am not the biggest camper out there.

It was nice being able to experience Cape May’s nature with a bit of luxury through Glamping Hub – an online booking platform for unique outdoor accommodations.

Glamping in Cape May New Jersey

In case you do not know, glamping is known as luxury or glamorous camping. It allows those to experience the great outdoors without the hassle of traditional camping. You don’t have to worry about sleeping outside and getting bit by bugs and you have access to a shower and toilet.

A glamping weekend in Cape May New Jersey

I was happy that both my mom and I glamped during our weekend in Cape May. Both of us are workaholics so we needed an escape that included nature, adventure and simplicity, of course with a bit of luxury at hand.

Glamping Hub placed my mom and I in a cute wooden cabin located at a lakeside campground in Cape May. The actual campground was situated in the heart of the Cape May peninsula with a 15-minute drive to both the downtown beach area as well as the Cape May – Lewes Ferry.

Even though the campground was inland of the beach, there were so many nature-walking trails, wineries, golf courses and shopping nearby.

A woman enjoying the nature in South Jersey

The cabin that my mom and I stayed in had a full bed along with two bunk beds, making it perfect for a family.

There was also a small bathroom that included a toilet and basin, ceiling fan, air conditioner/heat, refrigerator, microwave, coffee/tea maker, television with DVD, a screened porch to prevent bugs from coming in, charcoal grill, fire ring, picnic table and two plastic chairs. There wasn’t a shower included, but there was a shower facility located on the premises of the campground.

A campground in Cape May New Jersey

Overall, the campground included typical camping amenities and activities.

A cute snack bar at a camping ground in Cape May New Jersey

There was a lake for swimming and fishing where you could also rent a paddleboat, canoe or kayak; a few swimming pools; a beach with a jungle gym; an ice cream stand, snack bar and more. The campground was also the perfect place to just take a stroll and enjoy nature.

Where to Eat:

A woman in front of a beautiful restaurant in Cape May New Jersey

Peter Shield’s Inn & Restaurant: Facing the Atlantic Ocean is the beautiful and picturesque Peter Shield’s Inn & Restaurant. It is an absolutely stunning mansion that offers nine rooms, a wedding and event space along with a delicious restaurant.

My mom and I ate at Peter Shield’s Restaurant our first night and the food did not disappoint. I will admit, however, that the restaurant is a little pricey, but the food, wine and dessert were well worth it!

A delicious pasta dish from a restaurant in Cape May

I enjoyed orecchiette pasta with lobster meat, apple smoked bacon and spinach in a basil cream sauce and my mom had the pan seared boat scallops with lentils, kale and pancetta in a lemongrass aioli.

A dessert from a restaurant in Cape May

We savored our meals with a nice glass of red wine from the Cape May Winery. For dessert, we enjoyed a warm rhubarb crisp with almond streusel and butter almond ice cream. It was amazing!

Washington Inn: Another amazing restaurant to eat at during a weekend in Cape May is the Washington Inn.

Located in the heart of downtown Cape May amongst the beautiful Victorian houses sits this historical and charming restaurant where you could enjoy fine dining and comfort.

A seafood dinner in Cape May New Jersey

During our time at Washington Inn, I enjoyed the special oyster appetizer along with seafood cioppino that consisted of clams, shrimp, scallops and local fish in a spicy tomato broth with garlic aioli. My mom, on the other hand, had the restaurant’s crab cakes and said they were the best she’s ever had! For dessert, we both shared the special, which was a delicious lemon meringue tart. 

The Mad Batter Restaurant & Bar: Located in the Carroll Villa Hotel on the historic Jackson Street in downtown Cape May is The Mad Batter Restaurant & Bar.

A friend from college told me to come here for breakfast because the pancakes are the best, so we went right there on our last morning in Cape May! We both got the oatmeal pancakes that were absolutely incredible!

Getting breakfast during a weekend in Cape May

Uncle Charley’s Ice Cream: There is seriously nothing better than a delicious scoop of ice cream at the beach! Right before my mom and I left Cape May, we did some shopping downtown and then headed to the Washington Street Mall to get homemade ice cream at Uncle Charley’s. It hit the spot! 

The best ice cream in Cape May

Other Places to Eat in Cape May:

  • Congress Hall (The Blue Pig Tavern, The Ebbitt Room, The Boiler Room, The Brown Room, Veranda Bar)
A delicious dessert from a Cape May restaurant

Things to Do During a Cape May Weekend:

A woman wandering through the vineyards at Cape May Winery

Wine Taste at Cape May Winery & Vineyard:

On our last day in Cape May, my mom and I spent a lovely afternoon lunch at Cape May Winery. We were one of the first to arrive when it opened, so it allowed us to walk through the beautiful grounds and vineyards and take some photos. It is so picturesque there!

A woman enjoying a winery during a weekend in Cape May

Nowadays, Cape May Winery produces some of South Jersey’s most distinguished wines. Their main focus has been on Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Pinot Grigio, Riesling and Chardonnay.

A wine flight from Cape May Winery

During your time at the winery, you could do a tasting, take a tour and order food and wine to enjoy. My mom and I got a flight of six different wines (3 reds and 3 whites) and we also ordered a delicious hummus platter that included an Israeli salad as well as a charcuterie platter. Everything was perfect and it was a gorgeous day!

A hummus platter from Cape May Winery
A charcuterie platter from Cape May Winery

Overall, Cape May Winery was one of the most beautiful wineries I’ve been to and it’s definitely my favorite in New Jersey.

In addition to Cape May Winery, you could also visit Willow Creek Farm & Winery, Turdo Vineyards & Winery, Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery (which was next to our campground), Jessie Creek Winery and Natali Vineyards.

There are also a lot of breweries located in Cape May. You could check out Cold Spring Brewery, Cape May Brewing Co. and Bucket Brigade Brewery. My mom isn’t a beer drinker, so we didn’t get to check out a brewery during our weekend in Cape May, but I’m totally going to visit one next time!

Go to the Beach:

The beach in Cape May, New Jersey

You can’t visit Cape May and not go to the beach!

Known to have some of the most beautiful beaches in the United States, Cape May is the perfect place to sunbathe and relax, swim, skim board, surf, fish, kayak and more.

The beaches are clean, offer public restrooms, lifeguards and everything is in walking distance to the restaurants, shops and cafés in downtown Cape May.

The beach in Cape May during a summer weekend

If you are staying in Cape May for a while, I highly recommend visiting other nearby beaches too such as Wildwood (which features the famous Morey’s Piers), Ocean City and Atlantic City.

Watch the Sunset:

A girl dressed up on the beach in Cape May

Cape May is also a beautiful town to catch a stunning sunset! Even though there are various places throughout the town where you could enjoy golden hour, the number one place to go is to Sunset Beach.

Visit the Cape May Lighthouse:

The Cape May Lighthouse during sunset

One of the top places to visit in Cape May is the Cape May Lighthouse. My mom and I visited during sunset and the colors were absolutely beautiful!

The nature in Cape May New Jersey

The Cape May Lighthouse is the third documented lighthouse at the southern tip of New Jersey. During the day, you could climb the tower’s stairs, but since we came too late, we just enjoyed the views as well as the state park nearby where we saw a lot of gorgeous wildlife.

Do a Historical Tour:

A historical house in Cape May New Jersey

Since the seashore resort has a lot of history, I highly recommend doing an educational historic or ghost tour during your weekend in Cape May.

In fact, my mom and I even visited two haunted spots – Peter Shield’s Inn and Washington Inn. We didn’t experience any paranormal activity during our time there though.

In addition, there are various tours you could take of the beautiful Cape May mansions! A great one to visit is the Southern Mansion that also offers a luncheon and tea with it.

Shop Your Heart Out:

Antique shops in Cape May

Another great thing to do during your time in Cape May is go shopping.

Home to the beautiful Washington Street Mall, which spans a few blocks, there are so many wonderful boutiques, souvenir shops, home décor stores as well as jewelers where you could find the perfect gift for a loved one or even for yourself.

Take the Cape May – Lewes Ferry to Lewes, Delaware:

The Cape May Lewes Ferry

The Cape May – Lewes Ferry Experience:

A woman enjoying the Cape May Lewes Ferry during a weekend in Cape May New Jersey

The most memorable part of my trip to Cape May was taking the relaxing Cape May – Lewes Ferry. Open year round, tickets for the Cape May – Lewes Ferry could be bought online, over the phone or at the ticket office at either the Cape May or Lewes Ferry Terminals.

I highly recommend booking your tickets in advance because the ferry could overbook during the summer months. Those who bring their vehicle onto the ferry will need to pay an extra fare.

Vehicles on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

One of the great aspects of taking the ferry is that you could bring bicycles up to a 13’6” truck onboard. The ferry could hold up to 100 standard sized vehicles including RVs! All you do is drive your car onto the lower deck of the ferry, park it and enjoy the amenities onboard. Click here to learn more about bringing your vehicle on board the ferry.

Even though my mom and I didn’t bring our car onto the ferry, we were able to get around easily with the DART bus that picked us up from the Lewes Ferry Terminal and took us straight into downtown Lewes.

There are also buses that pick up from the terminal and take you to Rehoboth Boardwalk; the Dewey Beach outlets; Georgetown; Bethany Beach & Ocean City, MD; the Rehoboth, Long Neck and Millsboro areas as well as Wilmington. It operates from mid May through early September.

In Cape May, there is the Cape May Shuttle that operates mid June through late September. Of course, when you bring your vehicle onto the ferry, you could drive anywhere that you wish! You could also take a taxi or Uber in both Lewes and Cape May. (For those who are traveling by foot like my mom and I did, there is free parking at both terminals.)

A beautiful sunrise on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

During our second day in Cape May, my mom and I took the earliest ferry at 7am to Lewes.

A mystical morning on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

The ferry ride was around 1.5 hours each way along the Delaware Bay and while we were on board, we got to enjoy breathtaking views of the dolphins, lighthouses and beautiful blue sea. It was the perfect morning and everything was so peaceful!

Overall, the Cape May-Lewes Ferry is the perfect experience to enjoy with loved ones. There were mothers and daughters like my mom and I; young and older couples; families; friend groups and even people traveling solo! You could even bring your furry friend onto the ferry!

A woman enjoying an Orange Crush drink on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

On board, there are numerous seating areas outside (so you could enjoy the beautiful views and sea breeze) as well as inside (to stay warm when it’s cool and dry during rainy days). 

Inside of the ferry is a stand where you could grab food and drinks such as snacks, bagels, water and coffee throughout all times of the day.

On the upper deck is a bar where you could enjoy an adult beverage in the afternoon or evening. During my journey back to Cape May from Lewes, I enjoyed a famous mid-Atlantic beverage called an orange crush that consisted of ice, an orange slice, orange juice, orange vodka, triple sec liqueur and lemon-lime soda.

(I had this beverage for the first time in Ocean City, Maryland during Memorial Day Weekend in 2015 and it is the perfect drink to sip along the water.)

A woman having fun on the Cape May Lewes Ferry during a Cape May weekend

What is nice about the Cape May – Lewes Ferry is that it is always on time for both arrivals and departures. It is important to note, however, that you should arrive at least a half-hour before your ferry departure.

At both the Cape May and Lewes Ferry terminals, there is a fun restaurant (On the Rocks Dockside Grill – Cape May and On the Rocks Dockside Grill – Lewes) for you to enjoy food and drinks as you wait for your ferry. My mom and I hung out at On the Rocks in Lewes and enjoyed the beautiful views of the Delaware Bay and nearby Cape Henlopen State Park as we waited for the ferry to take us back to Cape May.

An announcement will be made 20 minutes prior to departure, instructing passengers on foot to proceed through the security checkpoint before entering the ferry where you will present your ticket. At that 20-minute mark, passengers will also be instructed to get into the vehicles to go through security and board the ferry.

An outdoor bar and restaurant on the water in Lewes, Delaware

In regards to what you should wear on the ferry, it all depends on what you are planning to do during the day. I highly recommend dressing warm or bringing a jacket because even on a hot summer day, there is always a cool breeze coming off the water.

A woman on the Cape May Lewes Ferry in New Jersey

Overall, my mom and I had a wonderful time taking the Cape May – Lewes Ferry from Cape May, New Jersey to Lewes, Delaware. It is super convenient and offers a lovely experience for all to enjoy during a weekend in Cape May.

Everything to do in Lewes, Delaware:

A woman standing in front of Dutch wooden shoes

Admire the Beauty of Lewes:

A woman enjoying the beauty in Lewes Delaware

Lewes, Delaware is a historical town because it is the first town in the first state. Although it is pretty quiet and the town is somewhat small, there is a lot to admire here. My mom and I explored Lewes for a few hours and it was the perfect amount of time!

A woman wandering through a garden in Lewes Delaware

One of the best things to do in Lewes is to just walk and get lost. The downtown area offers a lot of wonderful restaurants, shops, museums, churches and gorgeous Colonial homes.

A historical house in Lewes Delaware

My mom and I walked through the quaint streets, admired the beautiful St. Peter’s Episcopal Church; Zwaanendael Park that includes a gorgeous Colonial-style herb garden and fountain as well as the colorful Colonial and Victorian mansions.

Eat and Drink around Lewes:

A seafood crepe breakfast in Lewes

When we got off the ferry, we were craving a nice brunch. My mom and I found a great café called Blue Sea Café where I enjoyed seafood crepes that consisted of crabmeat and shrimp with a creamy lobster bisque sauce. It was amazing! My mom had a traditional all American egg breakfast.

A cute seashore breakfast spot in Lewes, DE

After walking around Lewes for a couple hours and burning off our delicious brunch, we were hot and craving a cool beverage. We wanted to sit outside, so we found a lovely bistro called Kindle where we sipped on rosé and enjoyed the cute puppies that passed by.

Homemade ice cream in Lewes

Before we left to go back to the ferry, I just had to grab an ice cream cone at King’s Homemade Ice Cream. This super adorable ice cream parlor has been around since 1972 and offers numerous flavors and toppings for all to enjoy on a nice summer day in Lewes.

Here is a list of other places to eat and drink at in downtown Lewes:

Learn Lewes’ History at the Zwaanendael Museum:

The Dutch Zwaanendael Museum in Lewes, Delaware

Delaware is the first state of America and was established by the Dutch in 1631. It was really cool visiting the Zwaanendael Museum in Lewes that commemorates the first European colony called Swanendael.

A Lewes museum

The museum is located in a beautiful Dutch-styled house and it showcases the maritime, military and social history of Lewes when the Dutch owned it.

In the museum, you could find photos of the Dutch royalty, various artifacts from the 17th Century, photographs and so much more.

Visit the Lightship Overfalls:

The Lightship Overfalls in Lewes Delaware

Located along the Lewes Boat Yard across from the Lewes Harbor is the Lightship Overfalls. This cool area features one of the only 17 remaining lightships out of 179 that were built from 1820 to 1952.

A woman exploring Lewes during a weekend in Cape May

Designated as a National Historic Landmark, you could also purchase tickets to actually go on the Lightship Overfalls and walk through it.

Tour the Cannonball House:

The Cannonball House in Lewes Delaware

Built in 1765, the Cannonball House has come to symbolize the town of Lewes and its society. Nowadays, it is home to The Lewes Historical Society’s maritime museum. It is also one of the original remaining houses in Delaware from that time period.

Go to the Beach:

The Cape May Lewes Ferry

What is nice about the town of Lewes is that they have their own beach (where you could also spot the ferry)!

In addition, this historical town is not too far from the other popular Delaware Beaches such as Rehoboth, Dewey and Bethany Beach. During a day to Lewes, you could definitely go to the beach in Rehoboth since it is only a 20-minute drive from the heart of Lewes.

Walk Around Cape Henlopen State Park:

Cape Henlopen State Park in Delaware

One of the best places to get your nature fix in Lewes is by walking around Cape Henlopen State Park.

With over 5,193 acres along the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean, there is so much you could do here such as hiking, swimming, boating, fishing and clamming, kayaking, paddle boarding and biking. In addition, you could also go camping at this beautiful state park!

What is awesome about Cape Henlopen is that you could also view a couple lighthouses as well. (I love lighthouses because they remind me of being near the sea.)

In addition, you could also visit the Fort Miles Museum and Historical Area and learn about the nation’s coastal defense during World War II and there is also the Seaside Nature Center where you could see various species from stingrays to horseshoe crabs.


A woman enjoying a day at a winery

Overall, I had an amazing weekend in Cape May and exploring the town as well as visiting Lewes, Delaware with the Cape May – Lewes Ferry. I couldn’t recommend it more as a perfect weekend getaway during the summer.

If you have any questions about my weekend in Cape May or Lewes, please send me an email at info@browneyedflowerchild.com.

A beautiful restaurant in Cape May

Would you like to spend a weekend in Cape May? Let me know in the comments!

A woman enjoying dinner at a nice restaurant

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A Cape May weekend getaway in New Jersey

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22 Comments

  1. Farrah on August 1, 2020 at 1:36 pm

    I never got a chance to go to Cape May while I was living in NJ but it’d be awesome to get to go someday! Your photos are beautiful!

    • Taylor Deer on August 1, 2020 at 11:27 pm

      Thank you Farrah! It is such a charming seashore town. 🙂

  2. Sharon on August 1, 2020 at 11:38 pm

    Cape May looks magical! So pretty. I didn’t know (or forgot) that Delaware was the first state. Interesting post!

    • Taylor Deer on August 2, 2020 at 12:10 am

      It really is so gorgeous! Also, yes, Delaware has a lot of hidden gems and great places to check out as well. 🙂

  3. Sophia Bawany on August 1, 2020 at 11:48 pm

    Cape May doesn’t seem like its part of NJ! The architecture is beautiful. I can almost see Victorian ladies coming out of their homes to promenade. This town seems like it has just the right amount of history, beach life, food and fun! Next time we are visiting NJ, Cape May will be a contender for our itinerary!

    • Taylor Deer on August 2, 2020 at 12:13 am

      Ah yes, it is probably the most charming town in the state. We have a few others as well such as Red Bank, Montclair, Morristown, Hoboken, Jersey City, Ridgewood and a few others. Definitely don’t overlook NJ. 🙂

  4. Kriszti on August 2, 2020 at 4:06 am

    Cape May looks amazing! I’ve never even heard of it before (the perks of being a European haha) but I just put it on my US travel bucket list. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:54 am

      It really is a charming town. I highly recommend checking it out if you’re visiting the East Coast of the USA. 🙂

  5. Brianna Simmons on August 2, 2020 at 10:45 am

    Cape May is such a pretty little beach town. Definitely on my wishlist for when we can travel again.

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:56 am

      Yes, you would definitely love it Brianna! It’s so cute. 🙂

  6. Digitaldaybook on August 2, 2020 at 11:06 am

    Cape May is such a beautiful area! I have been once and we took the Ferry to Baltimore which was such a fun experience!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:57 am

      Ah that sounds very nice and full of wonderful memories. 🙂

  7. Susan on August 2, 2020 at 12:15 pm

    What an adorable little town that I’ve never heard of! This looks like the perfect place for a weekend getaway! Thanks for sharing.

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:57 am

      Yes, it is absolutely stunning and one of the most beautiful towns in the state of New Jersey! 🙂

  8. jetlaggedroamer on August 2, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    Cape May looks so charming. I would love to visit this town. Honestly, I never hear of it, but I am adding it to my list now as a place to visit for a weekend getaway. My mouth is drooling thinking about those crab cakes at Washington Inn, that is one of my favorite things to eat. Thank you for sharing and I am excited to go soon hopefully. Pinning so I have this guide when I do!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:59 am

      Ah yes, it is so charming! I’m surprised it isn’t as popular as Charleston, Savannah and the other quaint coastal cities along the East Coast. There is so much to do. 🙂

  9. Kate Toll on August 2, 2020 at 2:17 pm

    Cape May looks so beautiful! I love the architecture of the inns and homes. It looks like a great weekend getaway, and i love all of the outdoor activities that are available!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 1:00 am

      Thank you Kate and yes, it really is such a charming beach town. I highly recommend it as a great East Coast escape. 🙂

  10. Vanessa Shields on August 2, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    Cape May looks like the perfect weekend escape and love how you glamped it up! I used to live in NYC but have never heard of it. I’m so bummed I never went here. That’s so cool that you can take the ferry over to Delaware. Both locations are so pretty with a ton of charm. I look forward to visiting on my next trip back east!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 1:01 am

      Yes, it was a very memorable trip! It’s a little far from NYC. I would say it’s definitely closer to Philly and even Baltimore. 🙂 Definitely go when you have the chance. You would love it!

  11. Lisanne on August 8, 2020 at 3:09 am

    Wow! Cape May looks absolutely beautiful. Never heard of it before. Great photos!

    • Taylor Deer on August 8, 2020 at 11:24 am

      It really is a gorgeous town. I recommend going there when you make your way to New Jersey. Also thank you! 🙂

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taylor-mansion

A Weekend Adventure with the Cape May – Lewes Ferry

A woman enjoying a morning on the Cape May Ferry

The Cape May – Lewes Ferry offers an amazing experience for those who love making memories near the sea. There was nothing more perfect than spending a mother-daughter weekend visiting Cape May, New Jersey for the first time as well as Lewes, Delaware thanks to the Cape May-Lewes Ferry!

A woman enjoying an evening on the beach in Cape May

The Mid-Atlantic coastal regions are thriving from late May through early September and there is nothing better than heading to the Jersey Shore on the weekends!

Since my family has a shore house in Lavallette, NJ, I usually do not explore other beaches along the New Jersey shoreline. However, I have always had wanderlust for the charming town of Cape May.

A beautiful Victorian mansion in Cape May

During my Cape May weekend, I went glamping, saw the beach, enjoyed the sunset, admired the colorful Victorian mansions, ate delicious food, drank amazing wine and took the ferry to explore Lewes, DE.

Discover the best things to do during a weekend in America’s oldest seaside resort and read all about my experience on the Cape May – Lewes Ferry.

**My weekend in Cape May, NJ was a press trip. This is a sponsored post from the Cape May-Lewes Ferry. This post is also in partnership with Glamping Hub who hosted me in one of their cabins for two nights.


Pin the Below Image to Keep Handy

A Weekend Escape to Cape May, NJ through the Cape May - Lewes Ferry

About Cape May, New Jersey:

A woman in front of a colorful mansion in Cape May, New Jersey

Originally discovered by the Dutch in the 17th Century, Cape May is located at the southernmost tip of New Jersey’s peninsula. It borders the Atlantic Ocean as well as the Delaware Bay.

A woman enjoying a summer weekend in Cape May

Cape May became a vacation destination for those living in Philadelphia during the mid 18th Century and was recognized as one of the finest beach resorts in the 19th Century.

In 1878, a fire that lasted five days destroyed 30 blocks in Cape May and as part of the reconstruction efforts, the replacement homes were built Victorian style.

A fun fact is that Cape May boasts the second largest collection of Victorian homes behind San Francisco.

A beautiful bed and breakfast in Cape May

Today, Cape May is a popular vacation destination and was recognized as one of America’s top 10 beaches by the Travel Channel. There is nothing more perfect than a Cape May weekend.

Getting to Cape May:

A woman enjoying the beach during a weekend in Cape May NJ

Cape May is around 3 hours from New York City; 1.5 hours from Philadelphia; 3.5 hours from Washington D.C.; 2.5 hours from Baltimore and 6 hours from Boston if you are driving.

Beautiful nature in Cape May

When it comes to air travel, there is a local airport in Cape May. The nearest international airports are Philadelphia International Airport, Atlantic City International Airport, Newark Liberty International Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport.

Since the big airports are far from Cape May, it is best to rent a car to get there.

My Experience Staying with Glamping Hub:

A woman staying in a cabin through Glamping Hub in Cape May

Even though I love the outdoors, I will admit that I am not the biggest camper out there.

It was nice being able to experience Cape May’s nature with a bit of luxury through Glamping Hub – an online booking platform for unique outdoor accommodations.

Glamping in Cape May New Jersey

In case you do not know, glamping is known as luxury or glamorous camping. It allows those to experience the great outdoors without the hassle of traditional camping. You don’t have to worry about sleeping outside and getting bit by bugs and you have access to a shower and toilet.

A glamping weekend in Cape May New Jersey

I was happy that both my mom and I glamped during our weekend in Cape May. Both of us are workaholics so we needed an escape that included nature, adventure and simplicity, of course with a bit of luxury at hand.

Glamping Hub placed my mom and I in a cute wooden cabin located at a lakeside campground in Cape May. The actual campground was situated in the heart of the Cape May peninsula with a 15-minute drive to both the downtown beach area as well as the Cape May – Lewes Ferry.

Even though the campground was inland of the beach, there were so many nature-walking trails, wineries, golf courses and shopping nearby.

A woman enjoying the nature in South Jersey

The cabin that my mom and I stayed in had a full bed along with two bunk beds, making it perfect for a family.

There was also a small bathroom that included a toilet and basin, ceiling fan, air conditioner/heat, refrigerator, microwave, coffee/tea maker, television with DVD, a screened porch to prevent bugs from coming in, charcoal grill, fire ring, picnic table and two plastic chairs. There wasn’t a shower included, but there was a shower facility located on the premises of the campground.

A campground in Cape May New Jersey

Overall, the campground included typical camping amenities and activities.

A cute snack bar at a camping ground in Cape May New Jersey

There was a lake for swimming and fishing where you could also rent a paddleboat, canoe or kayak; a few swimming pools; a beach with a jungle gym; an ice cream stand, snack bar and more. The campground was also the perfect place to just take a stroll and enjoy nature.

Where to Eat:

A woman in front of a beautiful restaurant in Cape May New Jersey

Peter Shield’s Inn & Restaurant: Facing the Atlantic Ocean is the beautiful and picturesque Peter Shield’s Inn & Restaurant. It is an absolutely stunning mansion that offers nine rooms, a wedding and event space along with a delicious restaurant.

My mom and I ate at Peter Shield’s Restaurant our first night and the food did not disappoint. I will admit, however, that the restaurant is a little pricey, but the food, wine and dessert were well worth it!

A delicious pasta dish from a restaurant in Cape May

I enjoyed orecchiette pasta with lobster meat, apple smoked bacon and spinach in a basil cream sauce and my mom had the pan seared boat scallops with lentils, kale and pancetta in a lemongrass aioli.

A dessert from a restaurant in Cape May

We savored our meals with a nice glass of red wine from the Cape May Winery. For dessert, we enjoyed a warm rhubarb crisp with almond streusel and butter almond ice cream. It was amazing!

Washington Inn: Another amazing restaurant to eat at during a weekend in Cape May is the Washington Inn.

Located in the heart of downtown Cape May amongst the beautiful Victorian houses sits this historical and charming restaurant where you could enjoy fine dining and comfort.

A seafood dinner in Cape May New Jersey

During our time at Washington Inn, I enjoyed the special oyster appetizer along with seafood cioppino that consisted of clams, shrimp, scallops and local fish in a spicy tomato broth with garlic aioli. My mom, on the other hand, had the restaurant’s crab cakes and said they were the best she’s ever had! For dessert, we both shared the special, which was a delicious lemon meringue tart. 

The Mad Batter Restaurant & Bar: Located in the Carroll Villa Hotel on the historic Jackson Street in downtown Cape May is The Mad Batter Restaurant & Bar.

A friend from college told me to come here for breakfast because the pancakes are the best, so we went right there on our last morning in Cape May! We both got the oatmeal pancakes that were absolutely incredible!

Getting breakfast during a weekend in Cape May

Uncle Charley’s Ice Cream: There is seriously nothing better than a delicious scoop of ice cream at the beach! Right before my mom and I left Cape May, we did some shopping downtown and then headed to the Washington Street Mall to get homemade ice cream at Uncle Charley’s. It hit the spot! 

The best ice cream in Cape May

Other Places to Eat in Cape May:

  • Congress Hall (The Blue Pig Tavern, The Ebbitt Room, The Boiler Room, The Brown Room, Veranda Bar)
A delicious dessert from a Cape May restaurant

Things to Do During a Cape May Weekend:

A woman wandering through the vineyards at Cape May Winery

Wine Taste at Cape May Winery & Vineyard:

On our last day in Cape May, my mom and I spent a lovely afternoon lunch at Cape May Winery. We were one of the first to arrive when it opened, so it allowed us to walk through the beautiful grounds and vineyards and take some photos. It is so picturesque there!

A woman enjoying a winery during a weekend in Cape May

Nowadays, Cape May Winery produces some of South Jersey’s most distinguished wines. Their main focus has been on Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Pinot Grigio, Riesling and Chardonnay.

A wine flight from Cape May Winery

During your time at the winery, you could do a tasting, take a tour and order food and wine to enjoy. My mom and I got a flight of six different wines (3 reds and 3 whites) and we also ordered a delicious hummus platter that included an Israeli salad as well as a charcuterie platter. Everything was perfect and it was a gorgeous day!

A hummus platter from Cape May Winery
A charcuterie platter from Cape May Winery

Overall, Cape May Winery was one of the most beautiful wineries I’ve been to and it’s definitely my favorite in New Jersey.

In addition to Cape May Winery, you could also visit Willow Creek Farm & Winery, Turdo Vineyards & Winery, Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery (which was next to our campground), Jessie Creek Winery and Natali Vineyards.

There are also a lot of breweries located in Cape May. You could check out Cold Spring Brewery, Cape May Brewing Co. and Bucket Brigade Brewery. My mom isn’t a beer drinker, so we didn’t get to check out a brewery during our weekend in Cape May, but I’m totally going to visit one next time!

Go to the Beach:

The beach in Cape May, New Jersey

You can’t visit Cape May and not go to the beach!

Known to have some of the most beautiful beaches in the United States, Cape May is the perfect place to sunbathe and relax, swim, skim board, surf, fish, kayak and more.

The beaches are clean, offer public restrooms, lifeguards and everything is in walking distance to the restaurants, shops and cafés in downtown Cape May.

The beach in Cape May during a summer weekend

If you are staying in Cape May for a while, I highly recommend visiting other nearby beaches too such as Wildwood (which features the famous Morey’s Piers), Ocean City and Atlantic City.

Watch the Sunset:

A girl dressed up on the beach in Cape May

Cape May is also a beautiful town to catch a stunning sunset! Even though there are various places throughout the town where you could enjoy golden hour, the number one place to go is to Sunset Beach.

Visit the Cape May Lighthouse:

The Cape May Lighthouse during sunset

One of the top places to visit in Cape May is the Cape May Lighthouse. My mom and I visited during sunset and the colors were absolutely beautiful!

The nature in Cape May New Jersey

The Cape May Lighthouse is the third documented lighthouse at the southern tip of New Jersey. During the day, you could climb the tower’s stairs, but since we came too late, we just enjoyed the views as well as the state park nearby where we saw a lot of gorgeous wildlife.

Do a Historical Tour:

A historical house in Cape May New Jersey

Since the seashore resort has a lot of history, I highly recommend doing an educational historic or ghost tour during your weekend in Cape May.

In fact, my mom and I even visited two haunted spots – Peter Shield’s Inn and Washington Inn. We didn’t experience any paranormal activity during our time there though.

In addition, there are various tours you could take of the beautiful Cape May mansions! A great one to visit is the Southern Mansion that also offers a luncheon and tea with it.

Shop Your Heart Out:

Antique shops in Cape May

Another great thing to do during your time in Cape May is go shopping.

Home to the beautiful Washington Street Mall, which spans a few blocks, there are so many wonderful boutiques, souvenir shops, home décor stores as well as jewelers where you could find the perfect gift for a loved one or even for yourself.

Take the Cape May – Lewes Ferry to Lewes, Delaware:

The Cape May Lewes Ferry

The Cape May – Lewes Ferry Experience:

A woman enjoying the Cape May Lewes Ferry during a weekend in Cape May New Jersey

The most memorable part of my trip to Cape May was taking the relaxing Cape May – Lewes Ferry. Open year round, tickets for the Cape May – Lewes Ferry could be bought online, over the phone or at the ticket office at either the Cape May or Lewes Ferry Terminals.

I highly recommend booking your tickets in advance because the ferry could overbook during the summer months. Those who bring their vehicle onto the ferry will need to pay an extra fare.

Vehicles on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

One of the great aspects of taking the ferry is that you could bring bicycles up to a 13’6” truck onboard. The ferry could hold up to 100 standard sized vehicles including RVs! All you do is drive your car onto the lower deck of the ferry, park it and enjoy the amenities onboard. Click here to learn more about bringing your vehicle on board the ferry.

Even though my mom and I didn’t bring our car onto the ferry, we were able to get around easily with the DART bus that picked us up from the Lewes Ferry Terminal and took us straight into downtown Lewes.

There are also buses that pick up from the terminal and take you to Rehoboth Boardwalk; the Dewey Beach outlets; Georgetown; Bethany Beach & Ocean City, MD; the Rehoboth, Long Neck and Millsboro areas as well as Wilmington. It operates from mid May through early September.

In Cape May, there is the Cape May Shuttle that operates mid June through late September. Of course, when you bring your vehicle onto the ferry, you could drive anywhere that you wish! You could also take a taxi or Uber in both Lewes and Cape May. (For those who are traveling by foot like my mom and I did, there is free parking at both terminals.)

A beautiful sunrise on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

During our second day in Cape May, my mom and I took the earliest ferry at 7am to Lewes.

A mystical morning on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

The ferry ride was around 1.5 hours each way along the Delaware Bay and while we were on board, we got to enjoy breathtaking views of the dolphins, lighthouses and beautiful blue sea. It was the perfect morning and everything was so peaceful!

Overall, the Cape May-Lewes Ferry is the perfect experience to enjoy with loved ones. There were mothers and daughters like my mom and I; young and older couples; families; friend groups and even people traveling solo! You could even bring your furry friend onto the ferry!

A woman enjoying an Orange Crush drink on the Cape May Lewes Ferry

On board, there are numerous seating areas outside (so you could enjoy the beautiful views and sea breeze) as well as inside (to stay warm when it’s cool and dry during rainy days). 

Inside of the ferry is a stand where you could grab food and drinks such as snacks, bagels, water and coffee throughout all times of the day.

On the upper deck is a bar where you could enjoy an adult beverage in the afternoon or evening. During my journey back to Cape May from Lewes, I enjoyed a famous mid-Atlantic beverage called an orange crush that consisted of ice, an orange slice, orange juice, orange vodka, triple sec liqueur and lemon-lime soda.

(I had this beverage for the first time in Ocean City, Maryland during Memorial Day Weekend in 2015 and it is the perfect drink to sip along the water.)

A woman having fun on the Cape May Lewes Ferry during a Cape May weekend

What is nice about the Cape May – Lewes Ferry is that it is always on time for both arrivals and departures. It is important to note, however, that you should arrive at least a half-hour before your ferry departure.

At both the Cape May and Lewes Ferry terminals, there is a fun restaurant (On the Rocks Dockside Grill – Cape May and On the Rocks Dockside Grill – Lewes) for you to enjoy food and drinks as you wait for your ferry. My mom and I hung out at On the Rocks in Lewes and enjoyed the beautiful views of the Delaware Bay and nearby Cape Henlopen State Park as we waited for the ferry to take us back to Cape May.

An announcement will be made 20 minutes prior to departure, instructing passengers on foot to proceed through the security checkpoint before entering the ferry where you will present your ticket. At that 20-minute mark, passengers will also be instructed to get into the vehicles to go through security and board the ferry.

An outdoor bar and restaurant on the water in Lewes, Delaware

In regards to what you should wear on the ferry, it all depends on what you are planning to do during the day. I highly recommend dressing warm or bringing a jacket because even on a hot summer day, there is always a cool breeze coming off the water.

A woman on the Cape May Lewes Ferry in New Jersey

Overall, my mom and I had a wonderful time taking the Cape May – Lewes Ferry from Cape May, New Jersey to Lewes, Delaware. It is super convenient and offers a lovely experience for all to enjoy during a weekend in Cape May.

Everything to do in Lewes, Delaware:

A woman standing in front of Dutch wooden shoes

Admire the Beauty of Lewes:

A woman enjoying the beauty in Lewes Delaware

Lewes, Delaware is a historical town because it is the first town in the first state. Although it is pretty quiet and the town is somewhat small, there is a lot to admire here. My mom and I explored Lewes for a few hours and it was the perfect amount of time!

A woman wandering through a garden in Lewes Delaware

One of the best things to do in Lewes is to just walk and get lost. The downtown area offers a lot of wonderful restaurants, shops, museums, churches and gorgeous Colonial homes.

A historical house in Lewes Delaware

My mom and I walked through the quaint streets, admired the beautiful St. Peter’s Episcopal Church; Zwaanendael Park that includes a gorgeous Colonial-style herb garden and fountain as well as the colorful Colonial and Victorian mansions.

Eat and Drink around Lewes:

A seafood crepe breakfast in Lewes

When we got off the ferry, we were craving a nice brunch. My mom and I found a great café called Blue Sea Café where I enjoyed seafood crepes that consisted of crabmeat and shrimp with a creamy lobster bisque sauce. It was amazing! My mom had a traditional all American egg breakfast.

A cute seashore breakfast spot in Lewes, DE

After walking around Lewes for a couple hours and burning off our delicious brunch, we were hot and craving a cool beverage. We wanted to sit outside, so we found a lovely bistro called Kindle where we sipped on rosé and enjoyed the cute puppies that passed by.

Homemade ice cream in Lewes

Before we left to go back to the ferry, I just had to grab an ice cream cone at King’s Homemade Ice Cream. This super adorable ice cream parlor has been around since 1972 and offers numerous flavors and toppings for all to enjoy on a nice summer day in Lewes.

Here is a list of other places to eat and drink at in downtown Lewes:

Learn Lewes’ History at the Zwaanendael Museum:

The Dutch Zwaanendael Museum in Lewes, Delaware

Delaware is the first state of America and was established by the Dutch in 1631. It was really cool visiting the Zwaanendael Museum in Lewes that commemorates the first European colony called Swanendael.

A Lewes museum

The museum is located in a beautiful Dutch-styled house and it showcases the maritime, military and social history of Lewes when the Dutch owned it.

In the museum, you could find photos of the Dutch royalty, various artifacts from the 17th Century, photographs and so much more.

Visit the Lightship Overfalls:

The Lightship Overfalls in Lewes Delaware

Located along the Lewes Boat Yard across from the Lewes Harbor is the Lightship Overfalls. This cool area features one of the only 17 remaining lightships out of 179 that were built from 1820 to 1952.

A woman exploring Lewes during a weekend in Cape May

Designated as a National Historic Landmark, you could also purchase tickets to actually go on the Lightship Overfalls and walk through it.

Tour the Cannonball House:

The Cannonball House in Lewes Delaware

Built in 1765, the Cannonball House has come to symbolize the town of Lewes and its society. Nowadays, it is home to The Lewes Historical Society’s maritime museum. It is also one of the original remaining houses in Delaware from that time period.

Go to the Beach:

The Cape May Lewes Ferry

What is nice about the town of Lewes is that they have their own beach (where you could also spot the ferry)!

In addition, this historical town is not too far from the other popular Delaware Beaches such as Rehoboth, Dewey and Bethany Beach. During a day to Lewes, you could definitely go to the beach in Rehoboth since it is only a 20-minute drive from the heart of Lewes.

Walk Around Cape Henlopen State Park:

Cape Henlopen State Park in Delaware

One of the best places to get your nature fix in Lewes is by walking around Cape Henlopen State Park.

With over 5,193 acres along the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean, there is so much you could do here such as hiking, swimming, boating, fishing and clamming, kayaking, paddle boarding and biking. In addition, you could also go camping at this beautiful state park!

What is awesome about Cape Henlopen is that you could also view a couple lighthouses as well. (I love lighthouses because they remind me of being near the sea.)

In addition, you could also visit the Fort Miles Museum and Historical Area and learn about the nation’s coastal defense during World War II and there is also the Seaside Nature Center where you could see various species from stingrays to horseshoe crabs.


A woman enjoying a day at a winery

Overall, I had an amazing weekend in Cape May and exploring the town as well as visiting Lewes, Delaware with the Cape May – Lewes Ferry. I couldn’t recommend it more as a perfect weekend getaway during the summer.

If you have any questions about my weekend in Cape May or Lewes, please send me an email at info@browneyedflowerchild.com.

A beautiful restaurant in Cape May

Would you like to spend a weekend in Cape May? Let me know in the comments!

A woman enjoying dinner at a nice restaurant

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A Cape May weekend getaway in New Jersey

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Currency: United States Dollar, Capital: Washington D.C., NJ State Capital: Trenton, DE State Capital: Dover, Time Zone: Eastern Standard Time

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22 Comments

  1. Farrah on August 1, 2020 at 1:36 pm

    I never got a chance to go to Cape May while I was living in NJ but it’d be awesome to get to go someday! Your photos are beautiful!

    • Taylor Deer on August 1, 2020 at 11:27 pm

      Thank you Farrah! It is such a charming seashore town. 🙂

  2. Sharon on August 1, 2020 at 11:38 pm

    Cape May looks magical! So pretty. I didn’t know (or forgot) that Delaware was the first state. Interesting post!

    • Taylor Deer on August 2, 2020 at 12:10 am

      It really is so gorgeous! Also, yes, Delaware has a lot of hidden gems and great places to check out as well. 🙂

  3. Sophia Bawany on August 1, 2020 at 11:48 pm

    Cape May doesn’t seem like its part of NJ! The architecture is beautiful. I can almost see Victorian ladies coming out of their homes to promenade. This town seems like it has just the right amount of history, beach life, food and fun! Next time we are visiting NJ, Cape May will be a contender for our itinerary!

    • Taylor Deer on August 2, 2020 at 12:13 am

      Ah yes, it is probably the most charming town in the state. We have a few others as well such as Red Bank, Montclair, Morristown, Hoboken, Jersey City, Ridgewood and a few others. Definitely don’t overlook NJ. 🙂

  4. Kriszti on August 2, 2020 at 4:06 am

    Cape May looks amazing! I’ve never even heard of it before (the perks of being a European haha) but I just put it on my US travel bucket list. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:54 am

      It really is a charming town. I highly recommend checking it out if you’re visiting the East Coast of the USA. 🙂

  5. Brianna Simmons on August 2, 2020 at 10:45 am

    Cape May is such a pretty little beach town. Definitely on my wishlist for when we can travel again.

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:56 am

      Yes, you would definitely love it Brianna! It’s so cute. 🙂

  6. Digitaldaybook on August 2, 2020 at 11:06 am

    Cape May is such a beautiful area! I have been once and we took the Ferry to Baltimore which was such a fun experience!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:57 am

      Ah that sounds very nice and full of wonderful memories. 🙂

  7. Susan on August 2, 2020 at 12:15 pm

    What an adorable little town that I’ve never heard of! This looks like the perfect place for a weekend getaway! Thanks for sharing.

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:57 am

      Yes, it is absolutely stunning and one of the most beautiful towns in the state of New Jersey! 🙂

  8. jetlaggedroamer on August 2, 2020 at 1:40 pm

    Cape May looks so charming. I would love to visit this town. Honestly, I never hear of it, but I am adding it to my list now as a place to visit for a weekend getaway. My mouth is drooling thinking about those crab cakes at Washington Inn, that is one of my favorite things to eat. Thank you for sharing and I am excited to go soon hopefully. Pinning so I have this guide when I do!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 12:59 am

      Ah yes, it is so charming! I’m surprised it isn’t as popular as Charleston, Savannah and the other quaint coastal cities along the East Coast. There is so much to do. 🙂

  9. Kate Toll on August 2, 2020 at 2:17 pm

    Cape May looks so beautiful! I love the architecture of the inns and homes. It looks like a great weekend getaway, and i love all of the outdoor activities that are available!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 1:00 am

      Thank you Kate and yes, it really is such a charming beach town. I highly recommend it as a great East Coast escape. 🙂

  10. Vanessa Shields on August 2, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    Cape May looks like the perfect weekend escape and love how you glamped it up! I used to live in NYC but have never heard of it. I’m so bummed I never went here. That’s so cool that you can take the ferry over to Delaware. Both locations are so pretty with a ton of charm. I look forward to visiting on my next trip back east!

    • Taylor Deer on August 3, 2020 at 1:01 am

      Yes, it was a very memorable trip! It’s a little far from NYC. I would say it’s definitely closer to Philly and even Baltimore. 🙂 Definitely go when you have the chance. You would love it!

  11. Lisanne on August 8, 2020 at 3:09 am

    Wow! Cape May looks absolutely beautiful. Never heard of it before. Great photos!

    • Taylor Deer on August 8, 2020 at 11:24 am

      It really is a gorgeous town. I recommend going there when you make your way to New Jersey. Also thank you! 🙂

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