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Wildwood Crest, NJ – A Seaside Sanctuary
One of the seaside towns that makes up “The Wildwoods” in New Jersey, Wildwood Crest is a laid-back, family-friendly seasonal destination that’s perfect for beachgoers. During your stay, you can search for dolphins while aboard a boat tour, sip a cup of coffee in a 1950s-style breakfast spot, or simply lounge beachfront and enjoy one of the best pieces of shoreline along the East Coast. With a broad range of oceanfront hotels, condo rentals, and budget-friendly motels, there’s a place to stay for every type of traveller in Wildwood Crest, and no shortage of fun things to do.
Wildwood Crest is located just south of the Wildwood boardwalk, and while it is encompassed by “The Wildwoods” resort district which also includes North and West Wildwood, the borough of Wildwood Crest is removed from the all-hour crowds that frequent the Wildwoods’ other areas. Thus, Wildwood Crest tends to be a popular choice among families with young children, couples, and other tourists who wish to keep a bit of a distance from the rowdier boardwalk crowd. From Memorial Day Weekend though mid-June, the beach has lifeguards on duty during the weekends. Thereafter and until Labor Day, you can enjoy beach access every day with a lifeguard on duty. Surfing is permitted in certain spots along the beach, and fishing, ball playing, and kite flying can all be enjoyed in designated spots as well. For optimal convenience, many resorts and hotels in Wildwood Crest offer beachfront accommodations, allowing guests to walk from the facility directly onto to the beach’s sandy shores.
You could easily fill your days with seaside sunbathing and swimming in the Atlantic’s cool waters, but if you choose to seek a few thrills during your stay at Wildwood Crest, there are many opportunities available to explore some of the area’s exciting activities. Like many seaside towns, Wildwood Crest has a number of water-themed adventures to choose from, including parasailing, pirate cruises, and a dolphin watch experience. Another favourite activity for vacationers is renting a bicycle at one of the many shops in the area. If you haven’t brought your own, riding a rented bicycle is one of the best ways to explore the beach, restaurants, and shops within the seaside town. In fact, a bike path stretches almost five miles throughout the Wildwoods, and its start can be accessed at Rambler Road in Wildwood Crest. Anyone looking for faster-paced thrills can hop aboard a wave runner to speed across the seas, and there are also the slow and steady airboats available for the whole family to enjoy.
Doo-Wop Dining & Jersey Favourites
During the 1950s and 60s, the Wildwoods experienced a period of growth in response to booming tourism, which led to the construction of motels and restaurants that took on the period’s “Doo Wop” architectural theme. Marked by bright colours and angular shapes, many “Doo Wop”-themed diners are still popular throughout the area, including the Doo Wop Coffee Shop. If you’re charmed by the aesthetic, you can even factor it into your accommodations by staying at a “Doo Wop” hotel or motel, such as the Caribbean Motel, which was built in 1957 and is now an official historic landmark. New Jersey is also known for its high concentration of Italian restaurants, and Wildwood Crest has plenty to choose from. Whether you’re craving a cheesy slice of Jersey-fresh pizza or a heaping portion of pasta, the town’s Italian food restaurants won’t disappoint. With its seaside location, Wildwood Crest also has a number of oceanfront bar and grilles, as well as seafood restaurants where you can enjoy a fresh fish sandwich or a refreshing frozen drink.
Parks & Points of Interest
From picnicking to enjoying live entertainment during the town’s Summer Music Series, Centennial Park provides many ways to kick back and enjoy across its sprawling greens. If you have little ones, you can also head to Flacco Park nearby, which has playground equipment. History buffs will enjoy Sunset Lake and Turtle Gut Park and Memorial, the site of a battle fought during the American Revolutionary War. On a rainy day, you can further explore the history of the area by making your way to the Wildwood Crest Historical Museum, which highlights the town’s glory days in the 1950s and 60s, during which world-renowned performers like Tony Bennett and Johnny Mathis frequented the area’s clubs. Should you find your feet growing tired of exploring all that the town has to offer, you can hop aboard a trolley car, which makes its way through the Wildwoods during the evenings while in season.