Here’s a few photos of my favorite place in New Jersey – Cape May and it’s surrounding areas. Cape May is a unique Victorian beach town with lovely beaches, shops, fabulous restaurants and a rich history…even a slew of ghosts!
A piece of history known as the “ghost tracks” have returned to the Higbee Beach area along the Delaware River in Cape May. Beach erosion and storms have continued to unearth the tracks from time to time, most recently in the last 10 days. My daughter and I visited that area yesterday.
The century-old tracks were built by the Cape May Sand Company who in 1905 began sand mining and dredging sand from the beach to be processed for glass and cement.
During the World War I period (1916-1919) this area served as a munitions testing ground performed by the Bethlehem Steel Loading Company. The tracks were used to move cannons and massive munitions along the coastline that were then fired into the beach and sand dunes to test their strength for the US and its allies, including Russia, France, and England.
Fortunately, sand mining operations were suspended in 1936 when Cape May became concerned about depleting sand from nearby bathing beaches.
A change in landscape can do wonders for the spirit…especially when you spend a week in Arizona. I’ve lived in New Jersey my whole life. Even though I have traveled extensively in the United States, it had been years since I visited there. I came back from this Thanksgiving week trip, renewed and refreshed after feasting my eyes upon scenes such as the ones below.
I hope you enjoy the mini-vacation here, particularly if you are looking out the window at a snowstorm as I am right now!
Backyard view of Santa Catalina Mountains, afternoon and at sunset
As I was driving in South Jersey earlier this week, I couldn’t help but notice this fantastic view. I pulled over to the side of the road and grabbed a photo. To me, it is a reminder that behind all of the dark clouds in life, sunshine and blue sky are always there waiting for the darkness to pass.
Summer would not be complete without my annual trip to Cape May. Actually, I usually travel there the last week of spring to avoid some of the craziness of the crowds that later flock to the Cape May area. My favorite part of Cape May is Cape May Point which is a mile or so outside of the quaint Victorian town. This is the area where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Delaware Bay. It is primarily a residential community with only one store/restaurant, a post office and many churches.
Catholic Church, Cape May Point
Last week, my daughter and I stayed at a cottage on Lake Lily, a thirteen-acre, fresh water lake with a colorful history. Apparently it was a special watering hole for the Kechemeche Indians. Rumors of British soldiers and Captain Kidd are intertwined in its history. Recent efforts by the Friends of Lake Lily have kept it a peaceful, healthy retreat for both humans and wildlife. I spent many relaxing moments sitting on this bench. I have to say that as much as I love sitting by the ocean, I found it more peaceful here.
View from Cottage
Swans on Lily Lake
Here are some of my photos at the point including the remnants of the S.S. Atlantus, the concrete ship that sunk off the coast in 1926. For some reason, I feel compelled to take one of the wreckage each year even though it doesn’t change very much.
At Cape May Point
At Cape May Point
Cape May Point
At Cape May Point
This area has a few excellent wineries which are fun to visit when the weather is not ideal. We spent an hour or so relaxing at nearby Willow Creek Winery.
Willow Creek Winery
At Willow Creek Winery
Recently, I discovered that my great-great grandparents retired to Cape May Point back in the 1870s after a life on the farm in Burlington County. Unfortunately, the 1880 census does not give the street address. One of the fun things we did was to eat in a French New Orleans restaurant at 410 Bank Street in the town of Cape May, a house where their grandson, and my first cousin 2x removed, lived in 1920. Maybe this family connection partially explains why I’m drawn here again and again.
410 Bank Street
So how about you? Do you have any fun summer plans?
Last week, I was back on the road for a trip to Virginia—one last getaway before winter sets in.
On the way, I stopped in Maryland on a lovely, warm day to visit fellow blogger, Robin, who was kind enough to invite me to her home for lunch. We talked as if we had know each other for years; it’s nice to discover that real friendships can develop over the internet.
When I arrived at the hotel, this lovely view of a rainbow, or two, welcomed me. I grabbed this photo with my cell phone as I hadn’t brought my camera to the room.
Virginia Beach, VA
Next morning, this was the view of the sunrise from my hotel window. The weather turned rainy and cooler after this.
Sunrise on Virginia Beach
The day I left, I stopped by Chincoteague Island, VA to see the wild ponies. None seemed to be on the beach.
Finally, I found some at quite a distance (my camera was zoomed to the max), maybe half a mile away.
Ponies on Chincoteague Island.
At the end of my journey, I stopped by Rehoboth Beach in Delaware on a very blustery day.
I find that it’s always good to get away, but just as nice to return home with an updated perspective on life. I leave you with the words of Lin Yutang ~ “No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow.”
Recently I spent a week in Cape May Point, New Jersey hoping to find the magic that I wrote about last year in Magical Moments. Although this trip with my daughter was just as fun and relaxing, I still hadn’t experienced that deep sense of inner peace and connection with “all there is” that I had found there previously…until the night before we left.
I love when the sun or moon sparkles on the water. It speaks to the innermost part of me in ways I can’t describe. Frolicking dolphins are a sure sign that there’s magic in the air. This is when it began for me, about an hour before sunset on Sunset Beach.
I looked at the water through the lens of my camera and the magic began (at least for me).
It’s exciting to catch a wave crashing on the shore.
Just before I left I had to capture this from the parking lot.
I hope you enjoyed sharing my special memories of Sunset Beach! Have you been to a beach lately? Any special moments you’d like to share?