Lancaster, PA

These Stunning Beaches are Within Driving Distance from Lancaster, PA

Sara Melissa Frost

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Ocean City, Maryland.Photo by Sara Melissa Frost

The beach and the summer go hand in hand. Below are 4 beaches, all fairly easy to get to by car from Lancaster, PA. Whether you go for a day trip leaving early morning or you plan a weekend getaway at one of these beaches, you will not regret it.

1. Ocean City, MD

The beach in Ocean City, Maryland is a favorite among Pennsylvanians. The 10-mile long beach is open and free to use for the public from 5:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. During the summer, Ocean City is packed with free family activities like movies on the beach, concerts, and beach dance parties. There's also Art X, Ocean City’s newest arts festival with so much to offer in one beautiful environment. Discover a variety of artists, from around the country as well as local artists with work on display and to sell.

The boardwalk has been called America's best by The Travel Channel, and USA Today named it one of the best boardwalks in the country for food. Day or night, there's always something happening here.

The 2.45-mile boardwalk also features an amusement park and arcades. You can catch a spectacular view from the top of their Ferris Wheel, or try one of their rides.

2. Rehoboth Beach, DE

Rehoboth Beach is located in the mid-Atlantic and is the largest beach resort in the State of Delaware. Known as the Nation’s Summer Capital, the town of Rehoboth Beach was historically branded as the getaway choice for beach-goers from Washington, D.C. Now, the beach town hosts visitors from all over the country, and they're big on events. Many of their award-winning town events have expanded, and Rehoboth Beach is now known as a year-round vacation destination for business and pleasure, rather than a seasonal destination.

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Rehoboth Beach, DEPhoto by Sara Melissa Frost

The boardwalk, 1 mile long, was originally built in 1873 on high ground between the beach and Surf Avenue. Many storms have changed the configuration over the years, but in 1879, the original Henlopen Hotel was built on the site now occupied by a hotel of the same name.

Don't miss out on the funnel cake from the boardwalk! There are a ton of fun activities, rides, and arcades for the entire family here, too. Make sure to stop by Funland, a paradise for kids.

The beach is closed during late hours, no one is allowed on the beach from 1-5 am.

3. Cape May, NJ

Cape May is a city and seaside resort at the tip of southern New Jersey’s Cape May Peninsula. It’s known for its grand Victorian houses such as the Emlen Physick Estate, now a museum with a preserved interior from the era.

The beaches in Cape May are beautifully kept, they're family-friendly and clean, and run about 2.5 miles parallel to Beach Avenue, and are within walking distance from most accommodations, including the Cape May Promenade.

Shops and restaurants line the Washington Street Mall, 3 pedestrianized blocks of Washington Street. The Cape May Lighthouse provides stunning views across the Delaware Bay and the Atlantic Ocean.

4. Bethany Beach, DE

Bethany Beach is a small coastal town in Delaware. It’s known for its wide, boardwalk-backed beach. is the kind of place that works great for beachhouse gatherings. It feels calm and peaceful here, and there's a lot of options when it comes to food and shopping.

Kayaking, surfing, boating, stand-up paddling, windsurfing are just a few of the opportunities you have if you want to enjoy the scenery outdoors but not stay on the beach all day. There's also an 18-hole golf course nearby.

The beach is closed to the public from 1:00 am to 5:00 am daily.

Pennsylvania does not have its own oceanfront beaches, but there are several beautiful beach destinations close-by in New Jersey, Maryland, and Delaware. With a large number of adorable beach towns on the coasts of all these states, you are likely to find one that works for you and your family.

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Journalist and writer. I cover local stories + food, mostly from PA.

Lititz, PA
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