Located on the coastline, Wildwood, New Jersey is a perfect family getaway destination. Head from your spacious Wildwood vacation rental to the beach for a fun-filled day of swimming, sunning, surfing, and building sandcastles. Popular attractions at Wildwood include lighthouses, amusement parks, water parks, and museums. The barrier island also features tram cars that run along the 2-mile Wildwoods Boardwalk from 16th Street in North Wildwood to Cresse Avenue. To help you plan your visit, here’s a list of the top 12 kid-friendly things to do in Wildwood.

1. Plan a Trip to Morey’s Piers & Beachfront Water Park

Morey’s Piers & Beachfront Water Park covers six blocks and features more than 100 attractions and rides. If your family craves excitement, go for a fast and wild ride on the roller coaster. The old-time carousel is great for families with younger children.

2. Cool off at the Water Parks

The boardwalk is home to two amazing water parks, Raging Waters and Splash Zone. Enjoy the float-up snack bar on Raging Waters’ River Adventure as you float along with the family. Raging Waters also features two kiddie areas for little ones who aren’t ready for the more exciting rides with the big kids. Splash Zone features multiple water slides and cabanas.

3. Test Your Luck at Mariner’s Arcade

When you need a break from water park rides, head over to Mariner’s Arcade. You and your kids can redeem points won on games for prizes that include CDs, DVDs, toys, beach towels, and electronics. While the children enjoy their games, you can try your luck on the poker machines.

4. Pet a Starfish at Seaport Aquarium

Seaport Aquarium is located on the boardwalk near Morey’s Piers, just a few hundred feet from the beach. It’s a great indoor attraction where the kids can help feed fish and turtles, see various reptiles, and meet some monkeys. A variety of beautiful tropical fish, including lionfish and clownfish, fill the tanks. Be sure to bring your camera to snap pictures of your kids petting the starfish.

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5. Stop by the Original Fudge Kitchen

Visit the Original Fudge Kitchen to treat your family to handmade fudge, chocolates, saltwater taffy, or sugar-free candies. Imagine the delight in your kids’ eyes when they see candy Legos, fruit slices, and chocolate-covered pretzels. The amusement park rides at Morey’s Piers are within easy walking distance if you want something to do after making your candy selections.

6. Share Breakfast in the Sky

Enjoy a meal unlike any other on the beach when you reserve your Ferris wheel breakfast at Morey’s Piers. Your sky-high breakfast features white linens and china, elegantly set up in your private Ferris wheel gondola. An executive chef prepares your gourmet breakfast, served fresh and ready to enjoy. The ride lasts about 45 minutes to an hour.

7. Go on a Pirate Cruise

Are your mini mates ready for a swashbuckling adventure? Dark Star Pirate Cruises welcomes your whole family to join its crew for a pirate adventure. There are pirate songs, games, and shenanigans to amuse and entertain buccaneers of all ages, including shooting the mean pirate with water guns, singing, dancing, and finding treasure. Everyone gets to drink some grog and learn how to talk like pirates.

8. Slay Dragons at Dragons Lair Mini Golf

The fire-breathing dragons aren’t under the kids’ beds in your Wildwood vacation rental; they’re at Dragons Lair Mini Golf, a glow-in-the-dark putt-putt experience. Dragons, castles, knights, and eerie eyes glow in the dark to guide you through the 18-hole indoor golf course. The white golf balls glow, and you do too if you dress in white.

9. Visit a Lighthouse

Step back in time to 1859 when you step up to the Cape May Lighthouse. It features a total of 217 steps, 199 of which are part of the cast iron spiral staircase inside the tower. The U.S. Coast Guard still operates the light, which is visible 24 miles out to sea. The Oil House includes a museum and carries souvenirs, books, and maritime items. Located about 14 miles away from the Cape May Lighthouse, Hereford Inlet Lighthouse is also a working lighthouse and museum. A park surrounds the lighthouse and includes several gardens. For those who cannot climb the lighthouse, a DVD tour is available upon request.

10. See the Shore from a Parasail

Parasailing adds a new meaning to hanging out, and Hang Loose Parasail can show you the ropes. Singles, doubles, and triples can fly without ever having to touch the water, as parasails are reeled gently off and on the back of the boat with hydraulics. From about 500 feet above the ocean, you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Jersey Shore and the Atlantic.

11. Learn to Surf

Ocean Outfitters surf shop offers private surfing lessons for kids and adults. The Jersey Shore features sloping beaches and sandbars that create gentle waves, making learning how to surf a safe activity, even for non-swimmers. Ocean Outfitters supplies the boards and the lessons. All you need to do is show up.

12. Explore Cape May National Wildlife Refuge

Cape May is home to a National Wildlife Refuge that encompasses more than 11,000 acres of beaches, woods, wetlands, and five hiking trails. The natural setting invites your family to relax and enjoy the peace and quiet. When it’s time to change the pace, you can take the kids hiking to explore one of the trails. Songbird Trail begins in the parking lot at the Headquarters Office and rambles about a mile through the forest where you may see bluebirds and box turtles. For a pleasant grassland walk, try Cedar Swamp Trail or Woodcock Trail. Each is about a mile long, and Woodcock Trail features short side trails that end with a view of the Delaware Bay salt marsh. Along the 2 miles of beach in the refuge, the short Dune Trail takes you behind the dunes to look for songbirds, butterflies, and dragonflies. Also on the beach, the Marsh Trail consists of a 500-foot boardwalk trail that leads to an observation deck where you can view the salt marshes.

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