CRUISE THE COAST
NEW JERSEY WOMEN’S HERITAGE
Cruise the coast of New Jersey to experience the historic sites and attractions that depict and honor the accomplishments of women who helped shape the country. Along the way, enhance your journey with roadside attractions and must-see extras that embrace women’s history and demonstrate how New Jersey is unlike any other state in the country.
Simply follow our three-day New Jersey Women’s Heritage: Cruise the Coast travel itinerary. To access more details about each historic site, be sure to click the links throughout to learn more.
Day 1: Monmouth County
Visit the Sandy Hook Lighthouse and Fort Hancock in the Gateway National Recreation Area. At the lighthouse, learn about Sarah Patterson, hired in 1867 as an assistant lighthouse keeper to her brother. At Fort Hancock, walk the military grounds and Officers’ Row, where Barracks #25 housed women enlisted in the Women’s Army Corp during World War II. From there, stop at the Vietnam Veteran’s Memorial and stroll through the Women Veterans Meditation Garden and visit the Memorial’s exhibits to discover the critical roles played by women during the war. Head into Long Branch for dining at the many eateries along the beach. Take a leisurely drive along the scenic route south for a glimpse of the majestic homes in Deal, Spring Lake, and Bay Head.
For overnight accommodations check into one the historic hotels in Ocean Grove.
Day 2: Ocean County
Begin the day in Toms River at the Pierson Schulthorp House, headquarters of the Ocean County Historical Society. Elizabeth Schulthorp Force was a twentieth century educator and social activist who devoted her career to improving the quality of family life. Take in a meal at one of Toms River’s waterside restaurants before driving the short distance to Double Trouble Village State Historic Site. This complete company town depended on the women workers who sorted and packed the famous New Jersey cranberries.
The historic hotels and B&Bs in Ocean City offer overnight accommodations.
Day 3: Atlantic and Cape May Counties
Head to Margate to see the wondrous Lucy the Elephant, originally built to attract potential real estate buyers to Margate and later run as a tavern by Sophia Gertzen in the early twentieth century. On your way to Cape May, be sure to drive through Wildwood to see the unique collection of Doo Wop era motels. Once in Cape May, visit Historic Cold Spring Village for an immersive experience in domestic life during the 1800s. Stop off in downtown Cape May for a leisurely meal and admire the Victorian architecture before visiting the Harriet Tubman Museum for the story of Tubman’s work as an abolition activist in 1850s Cape May.
THERE'S MORE TO SEE AND DO: EXTEND YOUR STAY AND ADD THESE STOPS
Visit a few of the iconic Jersey Shore eateries on the Anthony Bourdain Food Trail. Extend your trip with a stay in one of the many Victorian period B&Bs in Cape May and take a drive along the Bayshore Heritage Scenic Byway.
MORE WAYS TO EMBRACE WOMEN'S HISTORY
Stroll through Ocean Grove, whose founders supported women’s rights and sponsored speakers supporting women’s suffrage. Don’t miss the impressive Great Auditorium and summer cottages nearby. Visit Vineland to learn about the first suffrage convention in New Jersey in 1867 and the suffrage protest in 1868 at the Vineland Historical and Antiquarian Society.
New Jersey history is everywhere, hidden away on quiet back roads, right out in plain sight, in urban areas, country towns and villages, and along the Jersey shore. Historic sites across the state tell intriguing stories of New Jersey’s diverse, inventive, creative, and revolutionary people. History is alive and waiting for you. View Additional Resources