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Family Travel Question:

Q | What are the best motel accommodations off the New Jersey Turnpike?

I'm traveling with two small toddlers from New Hampshire to Maryland. Can you please recommend the best motel accommodations off the New Jersey Turnpike? -Michelle, New Hampshire

A | Best Jersey Shore motels for a family road trip

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Gillians' Wonderland Waterpark, Ocean City, New Jersey

Sounds like a fun drive, and I’m so glad to hear you’re breaking it up over two days, at least. Your kids will really appreciate the stop, and I can suggest a few motels with small pools that should work for you.

If you haven’t been, you’ll find that the Jersey Shore is a fun and funky place to explore, so try not to spend all your time on the New Jersey Turnpike. You may spend more time in the car and drive slower if you take the Garden State Parkway (it costs less too), but you must also veer east to Route 9, the seaside road that leads to the peninsulas and beaches.

Just try it: I can guarantee that both the front and back seat will enjoy some of the small towns, strip malls, ice cream stands and other bygone relics.

Seaside Heights and Ocean City are popular towns for families, so our suggested motels are located there. Here’s a review of a family Jersey Shore weekend with links to the motels. Not fancy, but clean and well priced, should meet your needs.

To get out and stretch your legs, think about Asbury Park or further south, Wildwood, both towns with big boardwalks.

If you can spare the time, by all means continue your drive down the Shore as far as Cape May. It’s a very cute, Victorian style town (read more about Cape May family attractions) that is easy to walk around in, and very kid friendly.

From Cape May, you can catch the Cape May-Lewes Ferry that goes to Lewes, Delaware, and really save a lot of driving. There are several departures daily, and it takes about an hour a half. Great way for the kids to enjoy a day cruise too!

Photo courtesy of Kyle McCarthy

Got your own family travel tips to share? Please leave a comment.