Even with the wealth of information available on the internet, I still like to have a good updated guidebook to the place I’m visiting to help me plan my trip. For one thing, I enjoy reading the opinion of the guidebook authors, who are experts on their areas, and just as I do from reading websites and blogs, with guidebooks, I always seem to dig up something new that I would have missed. If you’re heading down the Jersey Shore, here are five of my favorite guidebooks to the area that you might want to check out.
The Jersey Shore: Atlantic City to Cape May by Jen A. Miller
Miller is a fellow lifelong New Jersey resident and her love for the state comes through in this excellent guide to the Jersey Shore. The Jersey Shore: Atlantic City to Cape May covers everything from the gaming tables of Atlantic City to romantic seaside Cape May. This book will help you plan your Jersey Shore vacation, whether you’re looking for the unusual, such as a beachfront alpaca farm, a sunken concrete ship off the coast of Cape May, instructions on how to go crabbing, or information about something well-known, such as an overview of Atlantic City’s casinos. This is one of my favorite books about the area.
Cape May: The Informed Travelers Guide by Russell Roberts
This beautiful full-color book is the Cape May bible, with sections on the city’s renowned Bed and Breakfasts, attractions, special events, performing arts, recreation and leisure, tours and shopping, food, and more. When you read Cape May: The Informed Travelers Guide, if you haven’t already planned a trip to this historic town, you’ll want to.
Atlantic City: A Comprehensive Guide to America’s Premiere Seaside Resort by Dirk Vanderwilt
This sole focus of Vanderwilt’s Atlantic City: A Comprehensive Guide to America’s Premiere Seaside Resort is Atlantic City, so you’ll get more details on the casinos in this one. I like the way it’s broken down by neighborhood (area), with details on each of that neighborhood’s casino hotel’s accommodations, gaming areas, pools and spas, eating and drinking establishments and entertainment venues. There’s also an interesting Atlantic City history section, including information on the famed Miss America organization past and present.
Indsiders’ Guide: Jersey Shore by Lillian Africano and Nina Africano
The Insiders’ Guide: Jersey Shore covers 127 miles of Jersey Shore coastline, from Sandy Hook to Cape May Point. This comprehensive guide features everything from the usual: Events and festivals, outdoor activities, getting around, beaches, arts and cultures, food, shopping and accommodations, to the less ordinary: Farms and wineries, living history, historic villages, and revolutionary New Jersey.
Guide to the Jersey Shore: From Sandy Hook to Cape May by Robert Santelli
Another one of my favorites, Santelli’s A Guide to the Jersey Shore: From Sandy Hook to Cape May covers such activities as boating, fishing and beachcombing, outdoor concerts and museums, canoeing and clamming in the Pine Barrens, casinos and restaurants, antiquing and more.
Written in a conversational tone, the book offers interesting factoids, i.e. “Did you know that Rudolph Valentino taught tourists how to tango on Garden Pier before he became an international celebrity?” It also has entertaining sidebars, such as “Going Clamming? Here’s how,” “Shark Fishing” and “The Jersey Devil.” I have to admit that even though I’ve lived in New Jersey all my life, I learned a lot about the Jersey shore just by reading this book.