Cape May County, New Jersey - this 2 bedroom cottage is a year round holiday home situated along the Delaware Bay at High’s Beach (a small community rarely on the map).
Shore birds and wildlife abound on 30 acres of privately held land. Fishing… crabbing… peaceful walks along the beach… a perfect retreat!
Far from the madding crowd, yet Cape May, Stone Harbor and the Wildwoods are a mere 15 minute drive from the cottage.
Ever-changing sky and seascape - bring your camera and sketchbook. Views of the natural surroundings from inside and out - large front deck overlooks the dune to the Bay.
Fully heated and air-conditioned, comfortably furnished and well appointed with ease of enjoyment in mind.
Living area with fireplace, dining area and modern kitchen surrounded by large windows - beauty all around - no other house in sight, private yet not secluded.
King size bed in one bedroom, two twins in the other - with a small deck off the twin room that overlooks a fresh water pond.
Two decks - a large one overlooking the bay beach, and a small one to the rear of one bedroom - overlooking the pond and woodland behind the cottage.
We've been happily sharing our cottage with holiday guests since 1989.
Frog chorus… bird song… rustle of bay breezes… wintertime crystalline sparkle on sea oats… sunrise view over the woodland & pond… sunsets…
Here are the answers to a few FAQs -
Is the kitchen well equipped?
The kitchen is equipped with the usual appliances. There is a huge sink, a nice quiet dishwasher, a coffee maker, toaster and microwave, as well as a range and refrigerator.
The kitchen is stocked with dishes, stainless steel pots and pans and cutlery. The cooking island view is westward - of the bay and sunset, a relaxing cooking experience...
Are there laundry facilities?
A full sized washer and dryer are in an alcove off the bathroom.
What are the bathing facilities?
The bathroom contains a large shower, toilet and sink. There is an outside shower and stall behind the cottage, and a hose to wash off the sand on the deck near the entrance door to the cottage.
Is there beach protection for swimmers in the Delaware Bay?
Although the Delaware Bay beaches in New Jersey are open to the public, there are no life guards. Every once in a while we have noticed someone swimming in the Bay. Swimmers choose to do so entirely at their own risk. The floor of the bay gradually slopes out from the shore. At low tide there are alternating ribbons of sandbars and water way out from the shore line. You can see this in one of our photos.
Is there a grill?
Yes, we have a propane fired grill situated on the larger of the decks. We ask that our guests clean the grill after use... and notify us if the propane tank is empty. We live a few minutes away and are happy to bring another over promptly.
How far are the nearest protected public beaches?
The beaches in Cape May, the Wildwoods, and Stone Harbor are within a 15 - 20 minute drive of Bay Cottage. Most of these beaches require beach tags during the summer season, which are available for purchase in each community.
How far is the nearest shopping area from Bay Cottage?
Within two miles of the cottage there is an excellent garden center/farmer's market, a fish market/ tackle store/takeout restaurant, and a roadside breakfast lunch restaurant. The nearest convenience store is approximately 4 miles away. The major supermarkets, major chain stores etc. are within a 10 minute drive in either the Rio Grande area, or Cape May Court House. The best prices for gasoline are in Rio Grande NJ, just about 4 miles south of us. There is a wonderful variety of interesting specialty shops in the nearby shore towns, notably Cape May and Stone Harbor.
What sort of wildlife has been sighted at the cottage?
The cottage sits on a rather unique section of the Delaware Bay coastline in that it is not nearly as developed as most of the surrounding shore area of Cape May County. A multitude of species of shorebirds, songbirds, and raptors have been spotted in the wooded areas that surround three sides of the cottage, as well as on the beach. Our son was delighted by the sight of a large buck (with antlers) as well as a bald eagle, standing on the sand flats at low tide one early morning as the sun rose over the woods. If you're on the lookout for out of the ordinary (and ordinary) species of butterflies, frogs, turtles and small mammals, they do show up. And, of course, there are the horseshoe crabs who arrive during spawning season, and other marine life.
Is there an Audubon Center nearby?
An excellent Audubon Center and branch of the Cape May Bird Observatory is about 5 miles north of us on State Highway Route 47 between South Dennis and Goshen.
Can you launch a boat on the Bay Cottage property?
You may launch a small boat off the beach at high tide - but you will have to have someone to assist you to pull it up onto the beach from the driveway area across the path that leads to the beach in front of the cottage. This has been done, many times, with the right man power. There is also a marina about 4 miles north of us on Route 47, where boats can be properly launched and docked.
Is there cable television?
The cottage is equipped with basic cable and with a small television.
Is there Internet capability?
Yes, we have wifi at the cottage.
Is there air conditioning and heat?
The central air/ heat works well. We have both central heat and a pleasant little free standing gas stove. During a very hot summer day, due to the lack of tree canopy over the cottage roof, it is well to keep the shades half drawn during the afternoon, the windows closed, and the air on. Under those circumstances the temperature inside the cottage normally stays cooler than 80 degrees.
Is the beach accessible all year around?
During the past few years the State of New Jersey has imposed restrictions on beach access during the migratory period for the Red Knot. Typically the dates for the beach closure run from around mid-May to around June 4. The exact dates vary from year to year. During that period of time, although the beach is not accessible for walking, you can still put a beach chair out there on the dune, to catch the bird activity (the dune is part of our property). And we wish to stress that the view is great from the cottage itself. There is a long shell covered road on our property, just south of the cottage, that we call "Gus's Beach Road". It stretches one mile back to Route 47 through woodlands and wetlands areas. We welcome the many cottage guests who take advantage of this walk.
Are there good places to walk?
There is a nice long beach to walk. South of us are just a few other homes and the oyster research facility run by Rutgers, then nothing but the woods on the left and the bay on the right for quite a nice long distance. This walk is beautiful at all times of year and times of day. The sun rises over the woods, and sets over the Bay.
How far is Bay Cottage from the Cape May-Lewes Ferry?
A fifteen minute drive. And that's a great ferry ride, if you've never taken it!
Is the pond behind the cottage a good place to fish?
Not really. The best fishing and crabbing is on the bay beach, in front of the cottage. You can see some good bird life around the pond - various herons, and other water fowl, frequent the pond. During periods of minimal rainfall, the pond is sometimes reduced to a large puddle!
Why do your rates change throughout the year?
Cape May County is a resort area. We happen to love it at any time of year, so we offer our cottage to visiting guests during all four seasons. We like to reduce our rates in the off-season in order to encourage visitors to this incredibly beautiful area. We only rent the cottage out for weekends and weeks because we and our family use it ourselves every chance we get. A year round constant renter would not afford us that opportunity.
What is it like in the winter?
That varies. There can be sunny clear cold days, there can be very windy days, etc.. One of the most beautiful times of year is when the frosty feathery tips of the phragmites glitter in the sunlight and the rising or setting sun blankets the partially frozen bay in a subtle glow.
Is there privacy at Bay Cottage?
This is one of the finest aspects of the cottage location. Our property is over 400 feet wide at the bay end. We moved our cottage to the midway point of this width. As a result, the nearest house on either side of the cottage is at least a good long city block distance away, with vegetation in between, so, yes, there is privacy. We have been allowing our neighbor to travel on our driveway, on a temporary basis, so a few times a day their vehicles pass by. Other than that, and the occasional stroller or fisherman on the beach (on the other side of the dune from the cottage), there is the ultimate in privacy.
Are there nice things for children to do in Cape May County, besides going to the beach?
Lots in the shore towns and inland as well - miniature golf, the arcades, etc. There's a multiplex movie theater in Rio Grande, just 10 minutes from the cottage. A very nice large zoo and excellent playground is situated in Cape May Court House, and an excellent library. The Wetlands Institute on the road to Stone Harbor is a few minutes away. Leaming's Run Gardens is located in Swainton, just a short drive away. Cape May is a lovely town for young and old - full of beautifully restored Victorian houses, good restaurants, shops, tours, boat rides, music and theater festivals etc.. Stone Harbor is a classic shore town with lots to offer. The Wildwoods are host to that famously extensive boardwalk...