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Old 12-23-2018, 12:04 AM
 
286 posts, read 247,802 times
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Hello everyone! I posted this also in the New Jersey forum but wanted to see what people from philly thought as well. My family is trying to plan a big vacation to the Northeast possibly and I wanted to know where the best place to stay would be to have easy access that all there is to see and do. Iím thinking the main cities we would want to see are NYC and Philadelphia(with an off chance of taking a day trip further to DC). Some things we are interested in are theme parks, beaches, sightseeing, and just being typical tourist. We have never been to the area at all and after vacationing in Florida, Vegas, and California routinely, we are trying a new area.

Seemingly itís hard to find any resort areas or a good place to stay as a family where there is constant entertainment. We are thinking of renting a vacation home for now. So could you guys give me a good centralized location that is nice and family oriented for tourist that want to easily access Philly and NYC. I have been looking at Ocean City, NJ as a potential spot. Is it a fun and entertaining area? Atlantic City was a thought but the negative things said about it kind of scare me. Is it fun and lively during the summer. We are going close to mid June.

Feel free to recommend cool places to go and things to do that would be fun. Thanks for your help!
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Old 12-23-2018, 08:33 AM
 
Location: Villanova Pa.
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Mid June is a bit early for vacation season as that's the time schools finish for the year. Peak vacation season at the South jersey beaches is July fwiw. One thing to keep in mind the beaches are usually going to be a bit cooler than the rest of the region(that's usally a good thing in summer) and ocean temps in June will be in the 60's cool.


Ocean City NJ is a perfect central location, a family town with boardwalk amusement parks for the kids and clean beaches. Fishing, jet skiing, parasailing etc etc.. All the beach towns south of Ocean City down to Cape May are excellent.

Other choices I would recommend if you want to have the beach as your central base(excellent idea) would be Cape May NJ(great seafood restaurants) one of nicest beach towns on east coast . Just north of Cape May are The Wildwoods another great vacation spot Wildwood Crest + North Wildwood especially, and if you wanted to go to Washington/Baltimore you could hop on the Cape May-Lewes Del Ferry which will transport you and your vehicle across the Delaware Bay westward bound.
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Old 12-23-2018, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Villanova Pa.
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Center City Philly is one of the best walkable downtowns in US, the historical sites are a must,art museum, rent bikes on Kelly Drive(behind Art museum)long Schuykill River, Rittenhouse Square, an authentic Italian restaurant in South Philly, catch a Phillies game, Franklin Institute of Science, Woodland Walk on Univ.of Pennsylvania Campus.

Just outside the city maybe visit Washington Crossing(key location revolutionary war) and the town of New Hope Pa and walk across bridge over the Delaware river to Lambettville NJ.

Valley Forge National Park has a nice auto tour, and is next to King of Prussia Pa high end shopping mall one of the biggest in the world. If you have the time going from pa to NYC take the scenic route thru the Poconos PA 476 N to 80 East. Visit Jim Thorpe, Penns Peak , Hickory Run State Forest, have lunch at Nicks Lakeside Lake Harmony/Split Rock, Kahlahari + Cambelback Water Parks.

Good luck.
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Old 12-23-2018, 08:39 AM
 
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OP, Ocean City is a great family resort. But be aware that it is "dry". No alcohol is sold there. But that's one reason it attracts families.
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Old 12-23-2018, 02:59 PM
 
Location: Dude...., I'm right here
1,062 posts, read 619,847 times
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Seeing that you've never been to the area, I would like to point out to you that there is nothing like easy access to Philly or NYC from the NJ beaches. This is one of the most congested region in the country and it gets busier in the Summer.

I would recommend not staying at a central place from which to tour the area. Traffic to and from the beach can be a nightmare. If you want to visit NY, Philly & DC, get a hotel close or in the cities. Or you'll spend half your vacation stuck in traffic.

Between the 4 places you've mentioned, I would recommend DC and NJ beaches (based on your interests). A day trip to DC is not worth it. You need a couple of days in DC just to scratch the surface.
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Old 12-23-2018, 03:20 PM
 
Location: Dude...., I'm right here
1,062 posts, read 619,847 times
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It looks like you got better advice in the NJ forum than from the Philly forum.

Planning a Vacation. Please Help!
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Old 12-23-2018, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Eureka CA
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For a stay in Center City, the best choice is the Alexander Inn. [url="http://www.alexanderinn.com/"]
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Old 12-23-2018, 04:12 PM
 
29 posts, read 11,850 times
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Wally World, a match made in Heaven.
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Old 12-23-2018, 06:25 PM
 
Location: Philadelphia/South Jersey area
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So I love Ocean City NJ but I would not make it my central location. Now the great thing about being on vacation is that you can get around "off hours". I live in Philly adn drive to OC all summer long, I get up early on a Saturday morning an avoid traffic.

What I would probably do is get lodging in each area. so come to Philly and explore the Philadelpia area (plenty to do) and then head to the Jersey shore (again loads to do) and then hit nyc.

This way you will cut down on losing a lot of time to getting from one place to another.
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Old 12-24-2018, 06:50 AM
 
Location: Pocopson
98 posts, read 29,718 times
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As far as amusement parks go, I would recommend a day at Hershey Park. It's the best amusement park in the area and they also have a tour of the chocolate factory there. If you visit Hershey, it's not far from Lancaster, which would let you do some Amish tours, if you find that interesting. Alternatively, Six Flags Great Adventure is about halfway between NYC and Philly if that fits your itinerary better.

As far as "a good place to stay as a family where there is constant entertainment", I would say The Great Wolf Lodge up in the Poconos.

Philly and New York both offer world class museums, history, and restaurants (NYC has Broadway and Coney Island too). I recommend staying in Old City if you're in Philly; also consider Longwood Gardens as a day-trip from Philly. DC has a couple monuments and The Smithsonian, but that's about it. Speaking of cities, have you considered Boston? The drive up to Boston includes some cute New England towns such as Mystic and Cape Cod.

As far as the Jersey Shore goes... it has a beach and boardwalks, but there's hardly anything special about it. It's only popular because of its convenience to the big metro areas - I have never heard of anybody traveling a great distance to visit the Jersey Shore (unless they grew up in the area, moved away, and are coming back for the nostalgia).

All that being said, I would stay a couple nights here-and-there as opposed to one central location. The problem becomes how to get-around. Taking a train is the easiest way to access big, unfamiliar cities, but at the same time, the train doesn't go to the more remote areas.

If you only want to do the big cities, Amtrak connects all of them to make hopping-around easier (but Amtrak gets expensive unless you book far in advance). The simplest (but the least kid-friendly) itinerary is to fly into one end of the Northeast Corridor (i.e Boston or DC), Amtrak between all the big cities, and then fly out of the other end. If you do this, maybe tag Baltimore on the list, as the Inner Harbor is kid-friendly.

Last edited by Patmcpsu; 12-24-2018 at 07:05 AM..
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