Take the Kids: Rehoboth Beach, DE
Take the kids and make a day of it in Rehoboth Beach, DE.
The hottest spot on the Delaware coast, Rehoboth Beach offers free surfside access (no beach tags required) and five-star ocean-water quality. Busy today because of the shops, restos and family fun up and down the wooden boardwalk, the town has always been hopping: Rehoboth (translation: "broad spaces" in Hebrew) is the site of what's believed to have been the most important Native American fishing village on the Middle Atlantic coast.
Go: You could drive, but it's more fun to steer the car onto the Cape May-Lewes Ferry (board in Cape May, NJ) and let the boat ship you over the Delaware Bay. Once there, the 40-plus-year-old Jolly Trolley will take you around town from 8am to 2am.
Eat: With three Rehoboth locations, Grotto Pizza has been a local pizza tradition since 1960. It's famous for its “bolis” (strombolis) and Swirl pie (Rehoboth Ave. and Rehoboth Boardwalk North & South).
Amuse yourself: Nineteen rides for all ages anchor the boardwalk's Funland, a mainstay for five-plus decades (6 Delaware Ave.). Rehoboth's also home to the state's largest water park, Jungle Jim’s (right), equipped with giant slides, a wave pool, a lazy river, go-karts and bumper boats (36944 Country Club Rd.).
Shop: The Rehoboth Toy & Kite Company, open since 1993, equips beachgoers for an ideal windy-day oceanside pursuit (67 Rehoboth Ave.).
Swashbuckle: Pirates of Lewes Expedition takes mateys out for a treasure-filled charter to learn about local pirate lore from "Captain Crunch" (Anglers Marina, Lewes).
Snack: The Ice Cream Store on the Boardwalk serves up 70 classic and who-knew flavors (Ben Franklin's Tomato is spiced with Heinie Hurtin' Hot Sauce and Campbell's tomato juice), churned from cream that comes from local Jersey cows specially bred for optimal ice cream (6 Rehoboth Ave.).