The allure of Cape May bed and breakfasts

There might be no better way to experience the magic of America's oldest coastal resort than by selecting a Cape May bed and breakfast. In a beachside town that's positively brimming with handsome Victorian mansions dating back to the 1800s, there's plenty of heritage-steeped suites to go around. And that's not even mentioning all the extras – hot tubs, massage services, hand-cooked East Coast meals, and Garden State wines – that could be part of the package.

The character of Cape May B&Bs

Cape May certainly doesn't disappoint on the charm front, especially not for travelers who opt to stay in bed and breakfasts. How come? There are oodles of reasons, whether it's about eye-watering historic architecture or heart-warming welcomes from the locals…

Something that's steeped in heritage

Like the town in which they make their home, Cape May's bed and breakfasts are a handsome bunch. Just take a few moments to appreciate the porch-fronted, tower-topped Victorian abodes that cluster around the leafy avenues of the designated historic center. They often date back more than 100 years and have owners who are happy to share the long story of the building in which you'll be staying.

Local tips from bona fide locals

Wondering where the best whale-watching outfitters are to be found? Looking for the finest surf-and-turf grills on the seafront? After recommendations on the top NJ wineries? You should be able to squeeze all the information you need from the reception desk in your Cape May bed and breakfast.

A touch of luxury in Cape May B&Bs

It's not just the exteriors of Cape May's bed and breakfasts that hearken back to the golden era of the 1800s. Inside many of these pads are antique-brimming lounges and sumptuous suites with four-poster beds and sprawling balconies. But there's often a dash of modern luxury to them, too – think bubbling Jacuzzis in leafy yards, and flat-screen TVs in boutique rooms.

Amazing locations for Cape May bed and breakfasts

From coast to emerald grape field, Cape May has plenty of enticing settings for its bed and breakfasts. The pointers below range from the sandy beachfronts, through listed heritage districts, and out to bucolic farmlands, helping you zero in on spots to really get the wanderlust a-going.

Snag a stay just steps from the beach

If you like the sound of a beachfront cottage but want the extra service of a traditional New Jersey inn, Cape May's B&Bs can come to the rescue. In fact, one of the widest arrays of these homey establishments can be found dotting salt-washed Beach Avenue, while others stretch out to Cape May Point to the west.

In the midst of the Cape May Historic District

The Cape May Historic District was officially recognized as a national landmark way back in the 1970s. Delve into its blocks and you'll be sighing with nostalgia on every corner, between streets that are fringed with grandiose Gothic-Revival mansions and look-at-me Victorian cottages. Some of them are even B&Bs.

Escape to the Cape May winelands

Even on this far-flung tip of its shoreline, New Jersey is dressed in verdant vineyards. Surrounding the town to the west and north are acclaimed wine cellars, with names like Willow Creek and the Cape May Winery often topping the bill. There's even a chance you'll be able to unearth local wineries with B&Bs on site – you know, just in case you can't bear being too far from the tasting room.

Bargain deals on bed and breakfasts in Cape May, NJ

There are lots of ways you can cut the cost of that jaunt to Cape May's glinting beaches and sea-oat meadows, grand mansion avenues and wineries. Check below for some handy hints and you might find that the price tag of local B&Bs will drop considerably…

Try to book as early as possible

Because Cape May is a compact little resort town, there's not the same abundance of B&B accommodation as in nearby destinations like Wildwood and the rest of the Jersey Shore. That means finding bargains relies on beating the crowds, making booking as early as you can absolutely key.

The historic district isn't your only choice

Cape May's heritage-rich heart might be a looker, but it's worth remembering that it's not the only place on this stretch of New Jersey coastline that's got stuff going for it. Just to the north is Wildwood, for example, where five miles of white-tinted sand mixes with neon-lit carousels. Further west is Cape May Point, which has forget-me-not sunrise shows on one side, and romantic sunsets across Delaware Bay on the other.

Summer is great, but so are other seasons

As the temp spikes between June and August, so too do the visitor numbers. In fact, Cape May bed and breakfasts can be tricky to find during the summer. Period. Cheaper spring and fall are usually pleasant here, however, with warm days and chilly evenings, along with wine harvest festivals, less-busy beaches, and good whale-watching opportunities.