Wildwood (New Jersey)
Wildwood is on the Southern Shore of New Jersey. It is primarily a holiday town whose population swells in the summer months (June - August) with holidaymakers coming mainly from New York and Philadelphia. There are also a significant number of seasonal workers from Pennsylvania, Ireland and Eastern Europe.
The Wildwoods are easily accessable by car, just minutes off of the Garden State Parkway, the route the majority of vacationers from the tri-state area take.
There are also numerous buses that run into the bus terminal in Wildwood, which is located in the center of town on Davis St. Many Greyhound buses from Pennsylvania, New York, and Delaware offer services to this location, as well as New Jersey Transit buses for residents of the state of New Jersey.
Nearby Atlantic City is home to an international airport, which has several car rental distributors on site, as well as limosine companies to take tourists from the airport to Wildwood, which is slightly less than an hours drive from Atlantic City.
Once in Wildwood, it is incredibly easy to navigate your way around. If needed, the entire island is walkable. However, many people choose to drive for time and convenience purposes. Many residents and tourists choose to ride their own bikes, or rent them from one of the several rental facilities in the town. To get from place to place on the boardwalk, which spans numerous miles, many choose to hop aboard the tram car, which is a small, trolly-like vehicle that drives solely from one end of the boardwalk to the other, and is relatively inexpensive, one way only costing approximately $2.00. Taxi cabs and NJ Transit buses also operate through Wildwood, both which are cost effective, and are available constantly.
Although Wildwood is primarily known for being a shore town, there are several historic and recreational sites to visit during your stay there. Historic town hall is located in the center of Wildwood, as well as several small local museums. Wildwood boasts beautiful landscapes, which can be seen by taking a helicopter ride, or a boat tour, both which are available daily. There is a miniature aquarium located on the boadwalk that often hoasts interactive exhibits. Wildwood is also home to one of the country's oldest wooden roller coasters and the tallest ferris wheel on the east coast, which can be seen from miles, especially at night when it is lit up with an array of neon lights. The convention center, which is located at the end of the boardwalk, often has various activities, demonstations, and shows. The historic Cape May Zoo is also a short drive away, which is home to more than 200 different species of animals in a quaint park setting, and is visited by more than 3 quarters of a million people annually. The Zoo features a playground, nature trails, and a pond for fishing.
If you aren't a resident of the tri-state area, it's more than likely that you haven't heard of Wildwood, New Jersey. However, it is a spot worth noting as both an eccletic town, and an enjoyable family vacation spot. Located in Cape May County, on the Southern tip of New Jersey, Wildwood has long been known as one of the hot spots along the Jersey coast. What has always made Wildwood stand out amongst a sea of shore towns is its attention to family-oriented fun and a giant mix of activites for people of all ages. No matter what your interests are, or your personal vacationing preferences, you are sure to find something to love in The Wildwoods.
In terms of activities and nightlife, The Wildwoods have endless possibilities that can easily satisfy anyone's interests. The most obvious, and most frequently utilized attraction in The Wildwoods are the miles of beautiful sandy beaches. Although tourists and year round residents alike flock to all of the beaches, two of the most popular beaches on the island are The Inlet at the enterance to North Wildwood, and Diamond Beach, located in The Crest. Both of these spots are known for their secludedness. Besides from the obvious sunbathing and swimming, there are numerous activites to participate in at the beach, such as boating, para-sailing, hand-gliding, jet-skiing, and surfing. People who want to escape the crowds of the beach often head to the bay area to indulge in an afternoon fishing or crabbing. A favorite activity for all to enjoy is movie nights on the beach, where recent films are shown at night on huge projection screens in the sand. For rainy days when the beach is not an option, there are several movie theaters and rental places and a huge library for a quiet day inside. Wildwood is also a short drive away from the Atlantic City casinos.
Wildwood's nightlife is incredably diverse. The main attraction for familys is the boardwalk, which features miles of novelty shops, eateries, and the famous amusement piers, Morey's and Mariners, located a few blocks apart from each other. Both of these amusement parks can be enjoyed by either buying tickets or purchasing an all day pass for a discounted price. The rides range from kiddie go-carts and merry-go-rounds, to sky-high roller coasters and bungee jumping. There are also dozens of miniature golf centers, many with ice cream palors attached.
During the summer months, The Wildwoods also host many festivals and special weekends. During Memorial Day weekend, there are parades and many street vendors and speical activities to celebrate the beginning of the summer season. The same type of events are held at the end of the summer over Labor Day weekend. There is also Irish Weekend and Firefighters weekends in early Septemeber and forth of July fireworks on the beach, along with countless food tasting festivals.
Numerous tourist nick-nacks, food products such as world famous fudge, fried Oreos, and chocolate dipped bananas. Many vendors sell novelty clothing items and hermit crabs for the kids. There are several old time photo centers throughout Wildwood where families and friends can dress up in fancy old time costumes and pick a background of their choice, and have a professional photograph taken.
Wildwood features numerous places to sample a taste of the Jersey shore in all types of settings. If you are looking for a quick bite to eat, there is no better place to sample a tasty treat than the boardwalk. From the famous pizza shop rivals, Sam's and Mack's (everyone has a preference), to Curly's frech fries, Laura's and Douglas's Fudge shops, to countless ice cream and funnel cake stands, the smell of the boardwalk is just as prominant as the sounds of shrieking children and laughs from families enjoying each other's company. If you are looking for more of a sit down meal, the island features numerous diners and family-style restaurants, such as The Star Diner and The Vegas Diner, both in North Wildwood. The Wildwoods also feature world class seafood and italian style cuisine in such fine establishments as Gia's and Alfie's (in Wildwood), Uries and The Boat House (on Rio Grande Bolevard), and The CraB House (located in two mile landing in The Crest). Several world renowned restaurants are also located in Atlantic City, such as Morton's Steakhouse, which is located at Caesar's Pier.
There are numerous places for adults to indulge in a night out on the town in Wildwood. One of the town's most popular bars is Keenans Irish Pub, located at the enterance of North Wildwood. Both locals and tourists alike mingle in this hip setting where drinks and light appetizers are served. There is also a large dance floor. Clubs such as Shakers and The Ship and Shoreare also popular night time spots for the over 21 crowd. At local bar Shamrocks, Wednesdays are Quizzo night, where anyone can compete in a series of Jeopardy-like questions for prizes.
The Wildwoods are broken down into three main towns: North Wildwood, Wildwood, West Wildwood, Cape May, Villas, and Wildwood Crest. Although each of these towns offer numerous rental properties, North Wildwood and The Crest are more known for family and senior citizen rentals than Wildwood.Crest also has shopping. Wildwood is often the particular place of choice for young people from the area who rent houses with their friends, or for foreigners who come over in search of seasonal work, stemming primarily from Europe. Wildwood is also known for having bigger beaches and having a majority of the boardwalk. Wildwood's housing is considered to be a considerable amount cheaper than the rest of The Wildwoods, and because of this, the quality of the houses are nowhere near as luxurious as many of the home in The North and The Crest, although recently, a huge real estate boom throughout The Wildwood, have began to make Wildwood more than just a stomping ground for the youth. Many vacationers like to rent houses by either the week, the month, or the season. The most popular month to rent is July, which is consequently the moth when housing is most expensive. Many residents of the surrounding states have second homes in Wildwood, and utilize their vacation homes for all or most of the summer. These people are known as "Summer Islanders." Although housing is abundant, some tourists prefer to stay in hotels. In the past few years, many local hotels have been converted into condominiums, to satisfy the demand for properties to buy. However, a sizeable number of prominent hotels still remain including The Aloha is North Wildwood, The Bolero in Wildwood, and The Adventurer in The Crest, which all have restaurants attached. Some hotels have converted themselves into hostel-type living, where people seeking seasonal work can rent rooms for the summer at relatively cheap rates.