Thursday, August 15, 2013

Avalon NJ Vacation, Day 1

Tuesday August 13, Day 1

The family was overdue for a getaway vacation, no matter how brief, so we booked a three day two night stay at the Windrift hotel on the beach in Avalon NJ. Despite living within a 2 hour drive of the ocean, my kids have spent very little time at the beach. Even though I am not a huge fan of the beach, I know that this is something the kids would love, and so off we went to spend a few midweek days at the shore. Our in laws from north Jersey were also coming for the three days, so we would all be together.
The Windrift, 80th street on the ocean, Avalon NJ

We left home midmorning, and drove down on back roads to avoid the Atlantic City expressway, which also allowed me to plot a route that would allow me to get geocaches in a couple of new NJ counties; Cumberland and Atlantic. We found the caches easily, made great time, and were checked into the hotel and wandering down to the beach by 1pm. It had rained in the morning but was just overcast by this time, and the overcast gave way to scattered sun as the afternoon wore on, so we ended up with a nicer day than forecast.
Mom and ducklings on the beach
We had heard good things about the Windrift, which had been renovated within the last year or so. We had one room reserved, as did my sister in law and her family, who would be spending the three days with us. Overall, we were please with the hotel. It was straightforward but clean, and had a decent pool and really good restaurant, which we ate at Tuesday night. There were a lot of good seafood dishes ordered, and everyone was very satisfied.
Morey's Pier, Wildwood boardwalk

After checking in, we changed and headed down to the beach. It was only a cool mid 70's in temperature and overcast at times, but the kids were thrilled to be at the ocean, and wasted no time in getting in to the water. Our in laws showed up soon after us and joined us for a couple hours on the beach before our nice dinner.
Grace getting a "hair wrap"

After dinner we got on the Garden State Parkway south and drove down to Wildwood to spend some time walking the boardwalk (since there wasn't one in Avalon where we were). I'm not sure exactly how I would describe the boardwalk (cheesey money pit?), but the kids did like it very much. They did some rides, won cheap little stuffed animal prizes (which they will likely throw away within a week or two), bought fudge and salt water taffy, and just generally had a great time staying up way past their bedtimes. The highlight of Grace's evening was getting a hair wrap; a series of colored strings braided into a chunk of her hair.  It was around midnight by the time we got back to the hotel and got the girls into bed.

The plan for tomorrow is some pool time in the morning before heading to the beach in the afternoon.

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